Laos launches campaign to boost cattle exports to China
Topics: LAOS CHINA
The agriculture and forestry departments across Laos have been told to launch a publicity campaign to inform farmers and producers about the official opening of the Chinese market for Lao cattle, local daily Vientiane Times reported on Wednesday.
Laos has been granted a quota of 500,000 cattle for export to China.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, more than 2,000 cattle were shipped to China from April 28 to May 4 across the border in Sing district of Luang Namtha province, some 360 km northwest of the Lao capital Vientiane, as part of a pilot project.
China has asked for bovines that are four years old or less and weigh at least 350 kg.
It is encouraging entrepreneurs to raise cattle on a large scale in compliance with the specified requirements, such as they must also ensure that their farms are disease free so that livestock can meet the quality and quantity requirements for export.
The agriculture and forestry departments in all provinces have been instructed to provide training for farmers, entrepreneurs and anyone else interested in raising cattle for export to China.
The Department of Livestock and Fisheries has been advised to set up a network of village veterinarians across the country and to teach farmers and producers how to vaccinate their livestock and comply with all the set standards.
The department will inspect and certify the quality of cattle based on the agreement signed with Chinese counterparts.
One of the main challenges facing the government's plan to boost cattle production is the regular outbreak of livestock diseases, especially the foot-and-mouth disease, which is common in Laos.
In addition, the recent outbreak of lumpy skin disease has infected more than 11,000 cattle in 126 villages of seven provinces, according to the report. ■