Namibia Okays Biltong Imports From SA

Sliced beef biltong.

BILTONG, processed karakul pelts and cooked meat from cloven-hoofed animals are some of the only products that can be imported from South Africa due to the foot-and-mouth disease outbreak.

Acting chief veterinary officer Albertina Shilongo stated this in a second notice issued on Friday.

The ministry on 8 January 2019 suspended the imports and transit of all cloven-hoofed animals and products after a foot-and-mouth disease outbreak was reported in South Africa's Limpopo province.

Reuters reported that Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Botswana have also suspended imports after the disease was detected in cattle in Limpopo.

According to the notice, Namibians can import non-cloven-hoofed animals, products of non-cloven-hoofed animals, cooked, processed meat products from cloven-hoofed animals, dry biltong, heat-treated milk and milk products of cloven-hoofed animals, dry, salted and wet blue hides and skins, as well as fully processed karakul pelts and fully-prepared trophies.

The notice added that Namibians could import from other countries via South Africa fresh, uncooked products of cloven-hoofed animals, as well as semen and embryos of cloven-hoofed animals.

Commercially processed animal feed and hay-approved commercial facilities certified by the South African Veterinary Authority, can also be imported.

"The suspension remains in force, and all previously issued import and in-transit permits are hereby cancelled and recalled. Importers are urged to contact the veterinary import/export office for more information," said Shilongo.

The disease is very contagious among cloven-hoofed animals, and starts manifesting itself in an infected animal by causing it to develop sores on the tongue, gums, nose, udder, and also causes limping, amongst others.

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