Livestock farmers are reluctant to pay animal tax, a situation which has negatively affected the supply of beef in Manicaland, as buyers face difficulties in acquiring clearance letters.
Molus Meats manager Mr Artwell Mwagura said the beef shortage would remain until farmers started paying taxes which would then expedite the clearing of livestock for the market.
Mr Mwagura said tax evasion by livestock farmers was also compromising the quality of beef being produced.
“Shortages are always there despite the outbreak of diseases that we have been experiencing lately,” he said. “Some farmers do not pay their annual taxes on livestock and it is a challenge to off takers to get livestock cleared into the market.
“Quality is also a problem as farmers normally want to sell old and used up cattle which have poor quality beef. It would then become a challenge to get good quality like superior beef.”
Recently, Manicaland provincial livestock production and development officer Mr Joshua Zvoutete was on the record as saying beef supply now hinged on communal livestock farmers.
Mr Zvoutete said most communal livestock farmers were failing to acquire inputs, especially vaccines for their cattle, which has affected both beef supply and its quality.