THE number of slaughtered pigs decreased by 9,6% in the first nine months of 2017 due to the drought experienced in 2015/16 cropping season as well as unviable producer prices that obtained last year, an official has said.
Pig Industry Board (PIB) director Andrew Shoniwa told NewsDay in emailed responses that producers currently do not have enough pigs to satisfy the market due to 2015/16 drought period.
“The number of pigs slaughtered in registered abattoirs in Zimbabwe during the first nine months of 2017 was 113 979. The number slaughtered in registered abattoirs in 2017 was 9,6% lower than during the same period in 2016,” he said.
Shoniwa said the tonnage of pork produced through registered abattoirs during the first nine months of 2017 was 8 144, giving a 9,2% decline compared to last year in the same period.
“The producers do not, however, have enough pigs to satisfy the market. This development is due to the drought experienced in 2015-16 cropping season and the unviable producer prices that obtained in 2016,” the PIB boss said.
“There is a shortage of soya bean meal. The price of soya bean meal increased significantly in October. There are periodic stock outs of drugs and imported stock feed ingredients due to foreign currency challenges.”
Shoniwa, however, said the shortage of slaughter stock was temporary, as pig producers have started to increase their herd sizes.
He said the good maize harvest and viable producer prices were catalysts for the growth of the pig industry.
“The year will end on a positive note for the producers. The producer prices are likely going to firm during the festive season. The numbers that are going to be slaughtered in registered abattoirs are, however, unlikely going to surpass last year’s figures,” Shoniwa said.