Welcome to the July 2019 issue of the Red Meat Producers Organisation Newsletter
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Statutory levy under scrutiny

The 2020/21 red meat industry statutory levy application came under the spotlight during the recent Red Meat Abattoir Association’s 2019 conference and congress, which took place outside Stellenbosch. It was agreed that the association will participate in the process of finalising a new levy.
The application must be finalised for recommendation to the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC) by November 2019 with the aim of implementing the new levy by November 2020.
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Brucellosis survey to be conducted

Gauteng Veterinary Services will be conducting a Brucellosis Prevalence Survey in the province between July and September 2019.
A total of 300 randomly selected farms will be visited to bleed cattle for Brucellosis. A blood test will be used to determine possible infection on a provincial basis. This data will be used by the Directorate Veterinary Services to assess ongoing efforts at control and to improve strategies in the fight against the disease in the province.

Producers are requested to assist Veterinary Services on the ground in the conducting of the survey. Officials will be identifiable by way of an ID card with their photo and will have a letter of introduction from the Director, Dr D Nemudzivhadi. Stock owners can be assured that the info received will be dealt with confidentially and personal information will not be made public.

Red meat prices may rise

Consumers have been spoiled with lower meat prices in recent times, which also contributed to lower inflation rates, but it is not a foregone conclusion that your meat will in a few months’ time still be affordable.
Wandile Sihlobo, chief economist of Agbiz wrote in a market report the lower meat prices are partly due to an expected increase of the local meat supply after the food and mouth disease outbreak resulted in a ban on the export of South African beef to various markets.
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Red and white meats are equally bad for cholesterol

Contrary to popular belief, consuming red meat and white meat such as poultry, have equal effects on blood cholesterol levels, according to an international study by the Oakland Research Institute.
The researchers were surprised with the discovery that consuming high levels of red meat or white poultry resulted in higher blood cholesterol levels than consuming a comparable amount of plant proteins. Moreover, this effect was observed whether or not the diet contained high levels of saturated fat, which increased blood cholesterol to the same extent with all three protein sources.  
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Methane from livestock ‘not to blame’ for climate change

Methane produced by burping cows and other livestock is not responsible for increasing global temperatures, according to an expert in air quality.

Frank Mitloehner, professor of animal science at UC Davis in California, warned claims that livestock production is causing global warming, ignored the true impact of methane on the environment.

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EU to launch livestock programme in Zimbabwe

THE European Union is going to launch a €40 million four-year agricultural growth programme to improve Zimbabwe’s livestock sector.
According to the Zimbabwe Agricultural Growth Programme (ZAGP), the four-year agricultural growth programme will pave the way for increased livestock development in the country. It seeks to transform Zimbabwe’s livestock sector and develop a diversified and efficient agriculture sector that promotes inclusive green economic growth.

The programme consists of five outcomes each addressing key constraints that include increased production and productivity of the livestock sector. Livestock products have better access to markets and are more competitive, increased public and private investment in targeted livestock value chains and improved agricultural education systems and extension services.

Plant-based patty “tastes like the real thing”

A plant-based patty is masquerading as a real burger patty on restaurant menus in parts of South Africa – and it is just as good as the real thing, if you can afford it.
Called the Beyond Burger, it offers an alternative, vegan-friendly burger option made from 100% stuff that is not meat. Instead it is made from a rather interesting mix of ingredients that include pea protein isolates, expeller-pressed Canola Oil and beetroot used as a colouring agent to give it a juicy 'bloody' look.
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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), according to the monthly report on livestock disease trends as informally reported by veterinarians belonging to the Ruminant Veterinary Association of South Africa (RuVASA).
Prospects for improvement of the poor grazing conditions in the remaining part of summer and winter are not favourable.
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Introduction to the SIMPL

SUSTAINABLE, INTEGRATED MANAGEMENT of PARASITES of LIVESTOCK (SIMPL) in SOUTH AFRICA [adapted from a document written by Prof Gareth Bath]


Control of both internal and external parasites is vital to the wellbeing of ruminant livestock, yet in spite of the widespread knowledge that overuse and / or incorrect use of dips and doses will inevitably lead to increasing parasite resistance to the drugs available, farmers and many advisors are still clinging to the outmoded and dangerous practice of relying almost exclusively on drugs to control parasites.
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July 2019

A new vision for genomics in animal agriculture

A research team designed a new vision for animal genomics research into the next decade. The blueprint they created could help scientists and farmers meet the needs of a growing global population while improving livestock welfare and production.

Genomic technology took great strides in the last decade, but the blueprint calls for further progress that accounts for how other factors can work with genomics to improve production, he said. Future research should help livestock producers - particularly in the pork, beef, poultry and aquaculture industries - more accurately predict how their operations will perform based on a range of variables.

The blueprint predicts genomic technologies will play an increasingly central role in global livestock production.

“Ultimately, animal genome technologies will become part of mainstream agricultural production strategies used to improve animal health, well-being, production efficiency and product quality in ways that meet the demands of growing global populations," the document concludes.

High-risk areas for lumpy skin disease in cattle identified

Researchers have combined two separate computer models to identify areas at highest risk for outbreaks of lumpy skin disease virus (LSDV) in cattle.

The models could help officials determine where to send resources ahead of outbreaks and serve as a potential early warning system for cattle farmers in affected areas.

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Livestock farming has an important role to reverse climate change

It's not often you hear people refer to "livestock farming" and "climate change" in a positive context. And even less so among tech entrepreneurs, as increasing numbers look to create meat-free, alternative food products with the hope of reducing the impact of the meat industry on the environment.

But David Perry, CEO of Indigo Agriculture, a startup out of Boston and one of few agtech 'unicorns,' says certain farming practices, including raising livestock, are the solution to reversing climate change in a major new initiative launched by the company.

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The world's first vaccine for humans and livestock is being developed

From rabies and Zika to Ebola and bird flu, many deadly diseases around the world can pass between animals and people.

Currently, we have three options when trying to protect people from such zoonotic diseases. We can vaccinate the animals that can pass them on, the humans that can contract them, or take steps to help the two avoid contact. But what if there were a simple, inexpensive way to protect both people and other species at the same time, using the same vaccine?

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Beef market trends

In the international markets the New Zealand beef market is expected to continue to experience strong export demand which will support prices although supply is expected to decline to winter low levels, while the US beef market is expected to continue experiencing high levels of volatility, according to ABSA Agri Trends.
The US market is hopeful that the 4th of July will bring a spike in domestic demand. Continued wet weather is adding pressure to the market as increased US feed costs will impact their livestock markets. In the local market, beef prices are expected to remain relatively stable in the next three months. Class C prices should increase due to increased seasonal domestic demand due to winter that will provide support for prices.
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Sheep meat market trends

The New Zealand market for lamb and mutton is expected to continue experiencing strong export demand which will continue to provide support for prices, according to ABSA Agri Trends.
In the domestic market, prices are expected to be under pressure in the short term due to increased grains prices. Increased seasonal demand for class C meat is expected to provide support for prices in the next three months with class A prices also expected to experience an improvement. The price of feeder lambs is expected to continue along an increasing trend.
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Meet our new “Lambassador”, The Lazy Makoti

Lamb and Mutton SA launched a new “cooking with lamb” video series in June with South African food celebrity, Mogau Seshoene, also known as The Lazy Makoti.
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