Business

Southern Province to get cattle mobile auction centres

TRYNESS MBALE, Lufwanyama
MUSIKA is in discussion with various stakeholders to establish cattle mobile auction centres in Southern Province to encourage farmers to keep animals for commercial purposes.
Last year, the company launched a cattle auction centre in Choma which was not successful due to lack of sensitisation and distance from the villages to the market, hence the introduction of mobile centres.
Musika managing director Reuben Banda said the centres will be more community-based and will enable farmers get good prices for their animals, as well as exchange ideas on how to keep their cattle.
“The livestock auction programme we launched last year failed due to several challenges that we faced as a result of  little sensitisation to both the buyers and farmers. Many stakeholders that were supposed to take an active role in the programme were not prepared.
“We are looking at ways of coming up with mobile auction centres that will be more community-based by talking with various stakeholders in the livestock sector. We are going to roll out the programme within the next few months,” he said in an interview recently.
He also said the centres will accord farmers a chance to sell their animals without pressure because they will have adequate time to negotiate for a good price.
The centre will also allow farmers access to good breeds, genetic, as well as training to farmers on how to keep their animals, vaccinate, take care of the health of the animals and artificial insemination services.
Mr Banda said improved breeds will enable farmers raise their animals within the shortest period as opposed to the current situation where it takes about four years to take them to the market.

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