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Trans-boundary diseases hamper livestock development

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Tuesday, 28 June 2005

Trans-boundary diseases hamper livestock development

Trans-boundary animal diseases have marred developments in the livestock sector in the Southern African region during the 2003/2004, says a SADC annual report released in Gaborone recently. According to the report, four countries reported Contagious Bovine Pleuropneumonia (CBPP) cases in the region in 2003. The worst CBPP or cattle lung disease cases were reported in Tanzania (URT) with 20 outbreaks (314 cases and 125 deaths) and Zambia with 17 outbreaks involving 1 165 cases and 827 deaths.
The disease is also a problem in Angola and Namibia where both morbidity and mortality was reported. The disease threatens more than 30 50 per cent of the 47 million cattle population of SADC. Fresh outbreaks of CBPP continued to invade new areas after losing periods of absence and the reason has always been uncontrolled cattle movements. The CBPP situation in southern Tanzania and Zambia is at very high risk level. SADC is in the process of adopting a regional approach for surveillance and control of CBPP. Foot and mouth disease (FMD) was reported in Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, and Mozambique in the 2003.
According to the 2003 livestock, food and agricultural statistics (FAOSAT), the SADC region had 51.9 million head of cattle, 41 million sheep, 34.6 million goats, 5.5 million pigs, 1.6 equines and about 293 million of poultry. The report says SADC member states have significantly improved their national animal disease surveillance systems and are using information available from the surveillance system to define trends of animal diseases occurrence, determinants and economic impact, determinants and economic impact.
Efforts are under way to establish regional animal health database as part of the global livestock information management system to be established in the course of implementing the Promotional Regional Integration (PRINT) in Livestock project funded by the European Union (EU)." On other issues, the report states an estimated total of eight million metric tonnes of high value food products of animal origin, including beef, mutton, goat meat, pork, milk, and eggs was produced in the region during the year for human consumption.
These had an estimated value of over US$8 billion on the assumption that one metric tonne is worth on average US$1000.
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