Concern about continued cases of Foot & Mouth Disease (FMD) being diagnosed in Limpopo has prompted the national and provincial departments of agriculture to embark on an awareness campaign in the province.

Stock theft

Interestingly, this highly contagious and fatal disease in cattle is spread in a number of ways, including through stock theft (the thieves don’t check the health status of the animals before stealing them).

Thus, stock theft, as well as other infectious livestock diseases, constitute part of the departments’ awareness campaign as well.

Curtailment of exports

The danger of FMD (and certain other livestock diseases) is that widespread outbreaks can lead to curtailment of South Africa’s meat export trade. This has devastating effects on farmers as well as the economy in general.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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