FIJI - There is a shortage of dairy cows, says Fiji Cooperative Dairy Company Ltd CEO Sachida Nand.
According to The Fiji Times Online, he said the number of dairy stock in the country had reduced significantly in 2015.
"The biggest issue in terms of dairy farming is dairy animals," he said.
"Recently we had an influx of Bovine Tuberculosis in dairy animals. We lost quite a significant stock to Bovine TB. So we are still springing back from that loss. This was in 2015 to 2016. Our stock shrunk by almost 22 to 23 per cent.
"That's a very important factor to note. The primary thing you need is the animal."
He said it was difficult to import the farm animals.
"Apart from the shortage, at the moment, we can't import out of our neighbouring countries because of disease issues," Mr Nand said.
"You may be able to get the land. You may be able to get the labour or people to work with, but identifying the animals and getting those animals here is the biggest problem at the moment."
He said a dairy animal in the local market was an expensive commodity.
"A dairy cow and a beef animal are two very different commodities," Mr Nand said.
"A beef cow is only sold for its meat value. A dairy cow is in production between seven and nine years.
"It produces milk between that period and by the ninth year it still has a residual value for its meat.
"If a beef animal is worth a $1000 then a dairy animal would be $1250 to $1300."
TheCattleSite News Desk