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Namibia producer lose US $60 million dollars after feedlot closure

WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) -- Namibia’s biggest meat producer, Meatco, has said it is likely to lose about 800 million Namibian dollars (60 million U.S. dollars) because of the closure of a feedlot where zeranol was found.

Zeranol is an anabolic growth-promoting drugs in meat production, and is by far the most potent hormones found in the food supply.

The Department of Veterinary Services detected zeranol in urine samples taken from cattle at Okapuka feedlot, just about 30 kilometers north of Windhoek on Sept. 2.

Since this was the second detection of zeranol within the past 12 months at the same feedlot, the veterinary services closed it indefinitely.

In a statement seen by Xinhua Friday, Meatco said the closure of the feedlot will cost the company anything between 700-800 million Namibian dollars (about 52-60 million U.S dollars) per year as well as about 300 jobs.

The feedlot was supposed to slaughter more than 30, 000 cattle during the 2016/17 financial year but, according to Meatco, this target has already been decreased by 7,000 animals because of the closure.

Meatco also said they spent 50 million Namibian dollars (3.6 million U.S dollars) on Okapuka feedlot where 9,500 cattle, 70 percent of which were for export to the European Union, were being kept.


Namibia declares mussels and shellfish unfit for consumption

WINDHOEK Namibia (Xinhua) -- Namibia’s fisheries and marine resources ministry shut down all outlets that sell mussels and oysters harvested from the Walvis Bay and Swakopmund areas Friday.

Walvis Bay and Swakopmund are about 350 kilometers from Windhoek and this is where Namibia’s main fishing industries are located.

In a statement, the fisheries ministry said tests carried out recently by the Namibia Standard Institute showed that the mussels and oysters from these areas carry the diarrhetic shellfish poison.

Although the ministry did not say when exactly the tests were done, the statement advised the general public not to buy or eat mussels and oysters until further notice.

It said that the discovery was made during routine testing done as part of the National Shellfish Sanitation Program on Mussels and Oysters from the area.

Diarrhetic Shellfish Poisoning produces gastrointestinal symptoms, usually beginning within 30 minutes to a few hours after consumption of toxic shellfish.

Although not fatal, the illness is characterized by diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.

"The Ministry will, therefore, shut down the sales of these products until the further notice and therefore appeal for cooperation to all our stakeholders," the statement said.

In the event that some people consume affected mussels and oysters, the statement further said, they should seek immediate medical attention.

This is the second time this year the fisheries ministry has warned people against consuming mussels and shellfish from the areas.

In June, the ministry also warned about poisonous mussels and shellfish, saying that they had been poisoned by algae.

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