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Commercial rabbit production in Zimbabwe set for a major boost as government approves imports of quality genetic pool

Raymeg Consultants Private Limited (Raymeg), a diversified Zimbabwean group, has received a permit to import hundreds of pure breed rabbits to help bolster commercial rabbit production in Zimbabwe, the company said in a statement today.

"We are excited and grateful to the government for granting us a permit to import more than 200 pure breed rabbits from a world renowned and perennial awarding winning rabbit breeder based in South Africa. This is part of our efforts to support the majority of Zimbabweans venture into commercial rabbit production and shore up the country's gross domestic product," the statement said.

The Zimbabwe Commercial Rabbit Breeders Association (Zicorba) Secretary General, Mr. Regis Nyamakanga, confirmed the development, saying this will help in scaling-up commercial rabbit production in the southern African country. Raymeg is a corporate member of Zicorba.

"We are working with the Raymeg Group to introduce the majority of the 1,8 million households in Zimbabwe into the cash-economy, through commercial rabbit production for both the domestic and export market, " Nyamakanga said.

"We are currently signing up farmers, especially women and youth who will work with us on this initiative. The response has been overwhelming," he said.

Zicorba was formed by a group of farmers early this year to help formalise commercial rabbit production among the majority of Zimbabweans, bringing an end to many years where the sector was dominated by a few individuals.

 Nyamakanga said rabbit production was one of the fastest growing sub-sectors of the small-livestock sector because of the health and economic benefits of rabbit meat, which falls under the most sought-after organic food and white meat.

Zimbabwe, Kenya, South Africa and Egypt are among some of the top producers of rabbit meat in Africa. Global rabbit meat production is currently estimated at just over 1 million tonnes worth of over US$ 6,5 billion, with China accounting for 65 percent of global meat consumption, followed by the Democratic Republic of Korea and Egypt

"We anticipate the global rabbit meat market to continue an upward consumption trend over the next decade, with the volume estimated to surge to more than 2 million tonnes worth US $15 billion by the end of 2030," Nyamakanga said.

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Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka
Chuka (Webby) Aniemeka

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