NEW STRUCTURE IN THE PRIMARY RED MEAT INDUSTRY

The Red Meat Industry Cluster
26 January, 2023 by
Corlia Oberholzer

The primary role players in the red meat industry, namely the Red Meat Producers’ Organisation (RPO), the National Emerging Red Meat Producers’ Organisation (NERPO), the South African Feedlot Association and the Red Meat Abattoir Association requested the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy (BFAP) to set a vision 2030 for the red meat industry. The investigation of BFAP also aimed to identify the interventions required for growth in the industry. The new statutory levy is modelled towards the realisation of growth. The RPO supports the new vision 2030.

The process has been completed, with very positive results. The red meat industry is regarded as the sleeping giant in the South African agricultural sector and exports in the beef industry has the potential to grow from the current 5% to 20% of local production. As far as the small stock industry is concerned, there is also great potential in terms of live exports for slaughter purposes to the Middle East, but the same applies to meat exports. In future, it can take up as much as 6% of the market. 

This strategy is extremely inclusive and has the potential to add R12 billion to the nett worth of the red meat industry. It is also in line with the master plan which has been ¬finalised in collaboration with all the role players as well as the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development. 

Given the vision 2030, the primary red meat cluster (RMIS) identified certain functions which must be delivered to the industry, including animal and public health, inclusive growth, market access as well as competitiveness and sustainability. It is of critical importance that meat safety and quality can be guaranteed by means of meat classification and grading.

The services to be rendered by the RMIS include:

    • Animal health
    • Research and development with special attention to innovation
    • Traceability
    • Inclusive growth
    • Meat safety
    • Trade (imports and exports)
    • Production development
    • Consumer matters
    • Issues in the red meat industry

All these services will be delivered by the RMIS, and it will be done internally or be outsourced to contractors.

The new statutory levy is only deducted by the abattoir where the animal is slaughtered. An amount of R13.00 per head will be payable on cattle and an amount of R2.53 per head on small stock. Given the size of the red meat industry, it is a very small levy. 

The implication of the new strategy and implementing model is that the RPO will still be reliant on a voluntary contribution of 0.15% on turnover for trade (R1-50 on R1 000) which will be paid by our members. Farmers are requested to regard this initiative in a positive light. The relevant contribution is collected on provincial level and a small part of it are paid over to the national RPO. 

There is unbelievable potential in the red meat industry. It is clear that some of the functions will have to be managed by the industry itself. It is a well-known fact that the national and provincial departments of agriculture are experiencing serious capacity constraints. Cooperation on both provincial and national level will be required to realise the potential of the red meat industry


 



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Corlia Oberholzer 26 January, 2023
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