The Zimbabwean government has launched a US$300 million Special Livestock, Fisheries and Wildlife Programme to improve livestock production to support the revival of the meat value chain in the country.
The programme was launched in Matabeleland South. The Zimbabwean government has invested US$80 million in the programme, while the private business sector will provide the balance of US$220 million.
“This will enable the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority to demarcate red and green zones (for livestock and zoonotic disease control). The will help control the spread of diseases such as foot and mouth disease and curtail pasture conflicts between livestock and wildlife,” says Co-vice President Dr. Constantino Chiwenga.
The command livestock programme will stimulate growth in the meat sector by expanding the beef, dairy, goat, fish and poultry value chains. As part of the project, private petroleum company Sakunda Holdings has offered US$10 million and 2 million chicks per month to grow the poultry sector.
The Zimbabwe Agricultural Society and platinum miner Zimplats are funding the artificial insemination of 6 000 semen straws into 3 600 cattle. The project has a production target of 1 800 bulls and 1 800 heifers.
The second phase will involve the distribution of 16 000 more semen straws. Participating farmers will be given access to loans with a lifespan of between 3 and 5 years.