November 10, 2008

Meat processing factories to be constructed by Norwegians in East Africa


Two meat processing factories are to be set up in Nakaseke and Lyantonde districts, East Africa, with the help of Nortura, a Norwegian agricultural cooperative.


The cooperative operates slaughterhouses, meat and eggs processing plants in Norway.


State minister for animal husbandry, Maj. Bright Rwamirama, said that the equipment is ready and they are finalising technicalities to have them shipped into the country.


He, however, did not disclose the cost of the machinery. He said work would commence next year.


Rwamirama said the country has been divided into four zones, adding that each zone would get a meat-processing plant, and that they have been restocking livestock in the east and northern districts.


He decried the poor beef handling and the low animal stocks, saying they were a big challenge to the country's beef export prospects.


He said Uganda's quantity and quality of beef was still too low to meet the demands of both the domestic and export markets.


Rwamirama however, commended Nortura for a one year feasibility study which they conducted about developing an export oriented meat industry. The one-year study was funded by the Norwegian Agency for Development Corporation and was conducted by Nortura.


Uganda Beef Producers' Association (UBPA) Chairman Sam Kizito said Uganda currently has a stock of about 7.3 million cattle, compared to Tanzania, which has over 33 million and Kenya's 40 million.


Meat production in Uganda stands at 142,000 tonnes, with beef contributing 107,000. The national per capita consumption of meat has stuck to only 6 kg, which is below the 50 kg recommended by Food and Agriculture Organization and World Health Organization.

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