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Welcome to the January 2019 issue of the Red Meat Producers Organisation's Newsletter
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SAMIC announces new fees

In terms of section 3(1)(1A) of the Agricultural Product Standards Act, 1990 (Act No. 119 of 1990), the South African Meat Industry Company (SAMIC) announced that the following fees as approved by the members of the Red Meat Industry Forum, will be effective from 1 January 2019:
 
  •  Abattoir service fees:
The abattoir grade service fee per month (VAT excluded) will be R4 665.22 for a high throughput and R2 969.00 for a low throughput abattoir.
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Is red meat really bad for you?


You may remember the kerfuffle a couple of years ago when the World Health Organisation officially classified regular red meat (pork, beef and lamb) as a Group 2A carcinogen, “probably carcinogenic to humans”. So has anything changed since then?
 
Most red meat research focuses on whether it might increase your cancer risk, and here there’s some good news. One theory is that myoglobin, the red pigment that leaks out of your steak (no, it’s not blood) can transform into compounds that can damage your gut lining during digestion – but you can offset the effect by eating green veg with your meat. Another is that the “char” you get from grilling creates gut-damaging chemicals – an effect which, again, you can offset with cruciferous vegetables.
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Bovine meat production forecast to rise


World bovine meat output is forecast to rise to 72.2 million tonnes in 2018, up 2% from 2017, according to the FAO market review.
 
Much of this year’s expansion would stem from increased slaughter, as drought conditions forced increased cattle culling in some major producing countries. Across countries, Brazil, the United States, Australia, the EU and Argentina are anticipated to be the main contributors to this expansion, with contributions also coming from several others among the top-20 producers, including China, South Africa, Canada and Mexico.
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Ovine meat production also up


World ovine meat output is forecast to reach almost 15 million tonnes in 2018, up 0.8% from 2017, according to the FAO market review.
 
This expansion would largely stem from gains in Australia and China with some increases also expected in Pakistan, Algeria, Morocco and New Zealand. The EU, Mongolia and the Islamic Republic of Iran are likely to see production declines.
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Information on CBPP published


The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries released an information document on contagious bovine pleuropneumonia (CBPP).
 
It is a disease of cattle and water buffalo caused by Mycoplasma mycoides subsp. Mycoides (M. mycoides). As the name suggests, it attacks the lungs and the membranes that line the thoracic cavity (the pleura) causing fever and respiratory signs such as laboured or rapid respiration, cough and nasal discharges. Because it is highly contagious with a mortality rate of up to 50%, it causes significant economic losses.
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Perspective 


High intensity grazing in different ecosystems show positive results.

High intensity grazing, with or without quick rotation, is again the topic of discussion and has been implemented by some farmers in the last couple of years. This is not new, as grazing management programs with high stocking density were also propagated in the fifties and sixties. Some farmers had success, others not, and these programs were later phased out because of scientific measurements and arguments suggesting long term damage to the veld and evidence showing less than optimal productivity of livestock, mainly sheep. Nevertheless, researchers on government research farms kept on asking questions and because of confounding annual and seasonal effects designed long term experiments. One such experiment was initiated at the Carnarvon Research Station in the Northern Cape in 1988, the results of which have been documented by Harmse and Gerber cited below.
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Auctions for January 2019

Will Red meat stays on plates?


Targeted marketing based on in-depth consumer insight research has no doubt provided the foundation for red meat’s resilience on the Australian domestic scene.

This year, marketers delved into everything from identifying when the majority of shoppers decide what to have for dinner to exactly what consumers mean when they say “animal welfare”.
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Meat market review released


The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) released a meat market review, outlining the key trends in 2018.
 
Global meat output is forecast to hover around 335 million tonnes in 2018, up 1.5% from 2017, the fastest pace of growth since 2014. The regained momentum coincides with expectations of a strong recovery of the meat sector in China, after three years of contraction, and of sizeable increases in the United States and the EU. At the regional level, the outlook is generally positive, with all regions expected to produce more meat this year. Distinguishing across the various meat sub-sectors, bovine meat output is likely to grow at the fastest rate, followed by pig meat, poultry, and ovine, but in terms of volume, pig meat output is rising the most, followed by poultry, bovine and ovine meat.
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Guidelines for livestock production during drought


In large parts of the central interior available grazing material is scare on veld (natural pasture).
 
Prospects for improvement of the poor grazing conditions in the remaining parts of summer and winter are not favourable. In addition to current poor grazing conditions, low levels of water in the soil during spring and early summer will also have a negative effect on veld production and livestock. Crops are already affected negatively and therefore crop residues which are usually used as livestock feed will also not be readily available.
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Beef market supported by festive season


Local prices receive underlying price support during the festive season and due to lower fuel prices, according to ABSA Agri Trends.
 
International
New Zealand steer prices trade sideways over the week of 7 December 2018 at 5.54NZ$/kg and cows traded 0.25% higher at 3.96NZ$/kg compared to the previous week. In the US, beef prices for the week were traded on a carcass equivalent basis lower.
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Sheep meat prices should stay strong in 2019


Internationally, the strong global demand for sheep meat and limited supply availability are expected to support strong prices through 2019, according to ABSA Agri Trends.

Locally, sheep meat prices start to recover in line with seasonal trends and improved demand for higher quality cuts during the festive season.
International
New Zealand lamb and mutton prices were sideways to higher during the week of 7 December compared to the previous week. Lamb prices were 0,3% higher at NZ$8.00/kg. Ewe prices traded sideways at NZ$5.00/kg.
 
The import parity price for lamb was 1.7% higher at R83.56/kg, while the import parity price for mutton was 1.4% higher at R56.45/kg.
 
Local
Lamb and mutton prices increased when compared to the previous week. Lamb and mutton prices were as follows: The national average Class A carcass lamb price increased by 3.7% to R73.83/kg and the average Class C carcass price declined by 3.09% to R59.54/kg.
 
The average price for feeder lambs traded 5.6% lower at R36.67/kg.
 
The average price for dorper skin traded sideways at R30.56/skin and merino skin prices traded sideways R95/skin.
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Red Meat Producers Organisation · 318 The Hillside · Lynnwood · Pretoria, GP 0204 · South Africa