Quarantine Forces Lamwo Butchers To Hike Meat Prices

1800 Views Lamwo, Uganda

In short
Butchers have hiked meat prices in Lamwo district following quarantine imposed over outbreaks of two cattle diseases in the district. Foot and mouth disease (FMD) and Contagious Bovine Plural Pneumonia (CBPP) broke out in the northern Uganda district in July, killing more than 50 heads of cattle and affecting over 100 others.

Butchers have hiked meat prices in Lamwo district following quarantine imposed over outbreaks of two cattle diseases in the district. 

Foot and mouth disease (FMD)and Contagious Bovine Plural Pneumonia (CBPP) broke out in the northern Uganda district in July, killing more than 50 heads of cattle and affecting over 100 others. 

Lamwo district Veterinary department embarked on mass vaccination shortly after the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries imposed a quarantine to contain the spread of the diseases. 

Dr. Bosco Agena,the Lamwo district veterinary officer, says 15,000 livestock have been vaccinated against the two diseases since the beginning of August 2014. He says some traders from South Sudan have been implicated in violating the quarantine by sneaking in to buy livestock from the border district.  

Dr. Agena says the quarantine effectively banned the sale and consumption of cattle products such as beef and milk. Trade in skins and hides required for making leather also came to a standstill. Butchers in the district have reacted to the quarantine by hiking the prices of goat's meat, pork and chicken that provided alternatives. 

Thirty-two year old Samuel Oketa, a butcher in Lukung trading centre, says a kilogram of goat's meat now sells at 8,500 shillings, up from 7,000 shillings before the quarantine. He says the demand for goat's meat shot up that butchers are having difficulties to access goats for sale.   A goat that used to sell at 80,000 shillings is now fetching a hefty 120,000 shillings. A kilogram of pork has also gone up by 1,000 shillings from 7,000 to 8,000 shillings.  

Hotels and restaurant operators in the district are already feeling the pinch of the increments. Ida Adong, who operates a restaurant in Lukung trading center, tells Uganda Radio Network that they have also adjusted their prices upwards following the increments.  

Adong says the price changes have resulted in to low meat sales in their restaurants as many people prefer beef over goat's meat. She says they are buying chicken at between 15,000 and 17,000 shillings compared to the 10,000 shillings that they used to pay. Dr Agena advised that the ban will be lifted if new cases of the livestock diseases stop manifesting. Ends