Addis Ababa July 29/2020(ENA) Despite the huge hurdles the Ethiopian meat and dairy Industry has been facing, it has reportedly earned 72 million USD from export of meat and dairy products during the just ended budget year.
Ethiopian Meat and Dairy Industry Development Institute Director-General, Haile Selassie Weres told ENA that the majority of the income was secured from beef, goat and sheep meat.
The remaining income was obtained from other animals and byproducts as well as milk, honey, wax and fish export, he added.
According to him, demand for meat in April and May showed increase in Ethiopia’s major export destinations, namely Dubai and Saudi Arabia.
Before Ethiopian cargo stopped flying, the demand for meat was 100 tons in a day and countries were showing interest to import meat from Ethiopia.
However, the closure of flight cargo due to the pandemic and shortage of live animals supply impeded the nation from achieving its target in the sector, which was 124 million USD.
On top of that the increase in local demand and contraband of live animals have been among the challenges.
“We lack cattle supply while local demand is very high when compared to low price in export. For example, the price of one kilogram beef meat exported to a Middle Eastern country is 4 USD at a maximum whereas the local price goes up to 10 USD. So, investors are targeting the local market rather than export,” Haile Selassie explained.
The director-general stressed that attention should be given to improving market oriented animal production, veterinary services as well supply value chain in order to exploit the country’s huge potential in the sector
.In doing so, the shortage of livestock will be solved as meat products will be supplied in quality and quantity, helping the country earn significant amount of foreign exchange.
The government is therefore constructing five quarantines across the borders of the country to ensure adequate supply of live animals that fulfill the required standard for export and local market, he revealed.
Investors are also encouraged to build their own ranches and other facilities.
Ethiopia has the largest livestock population in Africa, a young rural workforce, and close ties to one of the world’s largest meat markets, the Middle East.