Windhoek — The Chinese Meat Association, represented by 20 delegates, visited the Meat Board of Namibia and the Meat Corporation of Namibia (Meatco) recently to familiarise themselves with the Namibian meat industry.
Namibia is in the process of obtaining access to the Chinese market for its beef products. The current signed protocol between China and Namibia indicates that no beef may be exported within 12 months of the last confirmed case of lumpy skin disease. Discussions between the minister of agriculture, water and forestry and the Chinese ambassador in Namibia led to an undertaking to revise the protocol, and specifically the stipulation on lumpy skin disease. The industry further requested that the export of bone-in beef and mutton, as well as offal and processed meat products from the NCA, should be added to the protocol.
The Chinese delegation was led by Li Shuilong, president of the China Meat Association and vice-president of the International Meat Secretariat of which the Meat Board is also a member. China could be an important market for Namibia as it imports 6.5 million tonnes of beef, 250,000 tonnes of mutton, 2.3 million tonnes of pork and 1.7 million tonnes of chicken per annum.
Meanwhile parliamentarians of the Kwazulu-Natal legislature also visited the MBN to explore the performance of the Namibian meat industry, as well as the traceability and farm-assured scheme systems Namibia deploys to export livestock to South Africa and in particular, to Kwazulu-Natal. The delegation gathered information on the structure of the meat industry and FAN Meat.