Buy local

One of the reasons behind the SA poultry industry’s strong growth in recent years is that dumping of frozen chicken from the US was downscaled drastically by the anti-dumping policy which Brazil is now challenging.

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I believe that if Botswana dumps their excess red meat on our doorstep, our own industry will be hard-pressed to maintain economic integrity and farmers may find it harder and harder to market their products, especially the less desirable B and C grade carcasses. The only way in which I see South African agriculture growing as an entity is if market focus is on locally produced items and if gross imports of cheaper products are minimised.

Meat landing here from other countries at cheaper prices than South African farmers can produce it puts unbelievable strain on local farmers. As if farming in this country isn’t hard enough with all the taxes on fuel and electricity usage, high feed costs and the astronomical losses of stock due to predation and theft. I believe that if we want the South African agricultural sector to succeed, we as consumers should try to buy only local produce and hope that some legislation is passed to strictly control the level of imported products on our shelves.