South Africa has removed a two-month ban on livestock sales that halted trade in cattle, sheep, and other animals following an epidemic of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in Limpopo late last year, the agriculture minister stated on Monday.
In January, an auctioneer was arrested on doubt of breaking the ban implemented on December 4 by selling animals from the northern area, the epicenter of the latest epidemic that led neighboring nations along with Zimbabwe to bar South African animal products.
However, exports continued to other vital markets in China and the Middle East. South Africa’s livestock auction sector, which incorporates a game corresponding to kudu, is considered to be valued at some 81 billion rand ($5.44 billion) a year.
The viral illness, which causes injuries and lameness in cattle, sheep, and other cloven-hoofed animals, however, doesn’t have an effect on people, was detected for a second time in November after an earlier epidemic in January 2019.
Announcing the removal of the auction ban, Agriculture Minister Thoko Didiza stated some affected farms remain isolated, and any future livestock auctions would wish the necessary permits and records to trade.