On June 23rd and 24th entrepreneurs will gather together to discuss issues such as modernization, breeding and feeding of the cattle herd.
With the expected participation of about 450 farmers from across the country and the aim of promoting new techniques and presenting successful experiences for development of efficient and competitive livestock, the V National Livestock Congress will be held from 23 to 24 June in the country, as a prelude to the XXI Central American EXPICA Fair to be held from 17 to 28 July this year.
Entrepreneurs in the meat industry believe that the increase in exports of live cattle will affect the future of the herd.
"The industry's concern is that Guatemala has already imported 3437 tonnes of cattle, where a large amount of the animals have not met the technical criteria set out in the Ministerial Decree number 027-2007, issued in September 2007 by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (Magfor) and the Ministry of Development, Industry and Trade (Mific)", reported Laprensa.com.
After a year and a half of not exporting, Mexico has approved in principle the entry of Nicaraguan meat for six months.
During the month of May, Mexican animal health authorities, inspected slaughterhouses and industrial plants in order to determine the validity of the authorizations for exportations for the next two years.
The cattle farming sector requires a $40 million investment over five years in order to implement the national traceability program.
Nicaraguan cattle farming association (CONAGAN), the Association of Producers and Exporters (APEN) and the Chamber of Meat Producers (Canicarne) are collaborating on a search for a cheaper alternative to the program.
Nicaraguan cattle ranchers have increased their meat and milkexports to Venezuela by up to 35% of their production.
By selling at a price slightly lower than usual, Nicaraguan cattle farmers have found the palliative in the Venezuelan market for the shrinkage of their traditional markets, especially the United States. However, it is unknown how stable this new market will be.
Sales of beef products fell in both volume and foreign currency earnings.
René Blandón, President of the National Livestock Commission, informed Elnuevodiario.com.ni: "According to published figures, the results of Nicaraguan meat sales to the world in 2008 totaled about $220 million, and a 25% reduction of that total is expected in 2009. However, cattle farmers do not seem to be so pessimistic because they assert that this situation that is affecting the country's ability to earn foreign currency could begin to normalize at the end of the year. "
Markets for Nicaraguan beef have increased rapidly in recent years, expanding beyond traditional buyers like the United States and Central America to the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Taiwan and Venezuela. About 500 tons a month are being exported to these destinations from four local meat processors.
Venezuela is the newest market. Next week the first shipment of beef from Nicaragua to Venezula will be made. It is based on a commitment made at the end of 2007 between the Venezuelan and Nicaraguan governments, according to René Blandón, Director of the National Livestock Commission and of the meat processor Carnic.