LNDC seals M250 million piggery deal

LNDC seals M250 million piggery deal

MASERU – THE Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC) has sealed a M250 million piggery deal with a South African company, Number Two Piggeries.
The project is expected to contribute to the development of production and supply chains and create over 1 000 jobs in the agricultural sector.
Preparations for the project are expected to be completed by December this year.

LNDC CEO, Mohato Seleke, said this is the first of many deals they expect to seal which will focus on different aspects of the industry.
Seleke said the partnership is the beginning of an implementation of a strategic plan 2019/2023 that was launched in June.
“We are working at securing more deals in this sector and our target is M800 million worth of deals for this financial year, even though we are aware that time is not on our side,” Seleke said.
He said the corporation is looking at securing M2.5 billion worth of deals for the agro processing sector in the next financial year.
He said this is meant to move towards diversifying products and market access for the growth of the economy.

“Agriculture is a priority sector because of its potential and we are hopeful that as a country we will be able to produce a few products for international markets in this sector,” he said.
Seleke indicated that locals will not only benefit through the creation of jobs but local farmers will get an opportunity to grow and commercialise their operations.
“We are interested in partnering with local farmers, people who are willing to be farmers full time, not subsistence farmers who produce for consumption only,” he said.
“We will prepare a market for them and ensure that they are financeable,” Seleke said.
He said they will also be adopting an out-grower model.

An out-grower model is a system that links networks of un-organised smallholder farmers with domestic and international buyers, according to Jane Abramovic and Samantha Krause in Outgrower Schemes: A pathway to sustainable agriculture.
Also known as contract farming, these schemes provide benefits to players along the supply chain.

Buyers can improve their control over crop supply, often at pre-agreed prices, as well as crop quality standards.
And farmers can access more secure markets, often receiving technical and financial support by cultivating within out-grower schemes. Semethe Raleche, Head of Investments at the LNDC, said locals will also benefit as the LNDC is no longer just buying land or expropriating land but will allow land owners to have a stake.

“Land owners will form land trusts which in turn will hold equity shareholding and be liable to dividends, capital gains and employment,” Raleche said.
Raleche said the agricultural sector needs technology and therefore it is critical to have insurance companies on board to come up with products that will cater for the needs of the industry.
Chris Havenga of Number Two Piggeries said the company was established in 1976 in South Africa.

“Number Two Piggeries currently employs 1 000 people. It has piggeries all over South Africa, as well as one in Namibia,” Havenga said.
The company is said to represent more than 20 percent of South Africa’s national pork production.

The group also has its own abattoirs, with 25 percent of pork production in South Africa slaughtered there.
Havenga said Number Two Piggeries is looking forward to branching into Lesotho.
The Lesotho livestock report of 2013/2014 showed that there were 63 415 pigs out of which 13 242 were large white, 9 054 landrace, 2 385 Duroc while large black were 687.

Lemohang Rakotsoane

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