Ban lifted on fresh ostrich meat exports

By the end of August, South African producers will again be able to export fresh ostrich meat to the EU.

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Exports were banned following a break-out of highly pathogenic avian influenza four years ago. Since then the industry has implemented numerous measures to prevent future outbreaks and has also started exporting cooked ostrich meat.

The industry has satisfied the European Commission that the area is free of the disease and it’s complying with regulations to prevent a future occurrence, and the Commission has now agreed to lift the ban.

Minister of Economic Opportunities Alan Winde said the trade of fresh ostrich meat will help to boost economic growth and create new job opportunities. The industry will, however, continue to export processed meat, to lessen the impact if a ban on fresh meat should be introduced again.

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The industry is estimated to currently employ about 50 000 and contribute R1 billion to the economy