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Elements Programme 3

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ANTICIPATION AND MITIGATION OF AGRICULTURAL RISKS TO CREATE A RESILIENT RED MEAT SECTOR

P3 Elements for anticipation and mitigation of agricultural risks to create a resilient red meat sector

ELEMENTS/CHALLENGES

OUTCOMES/OUTPUTS

INDICATORS

1. Predation


A functional management information system (MIS) that is functioning as a national asset and available to all users

Information is updated in real time on issues related to biological, physical, economic and social factors to ensure coordinated predation management

A coordinated system of predation management is developed and implemented 


Relevant information regarding predation and predation management methods is collated, analysed and disseminated to guide the specialists in predation management

Research needs are prioritized and communicated with all relevant role players

A reduction in the cost of predation, indirect (prevention of predation – non-lethal/lethal methods) and direct costs (losses of livestock and wildlife/game) that increase profitability.

2. Livestock theft prevention


Baseline database and relevant information on the extent and impact of livestock theft in South Africa. The institutional memory will serve to inform a system of coordinated livestock theft prevention.


A national database is available for use by all role players and stakeholders to inform strategic and tactical planning for livestock theft prevention management. This can result in reducing the impact of livestock theft


Technology and services available to assist in livestock theft prevention, e.g. animal identification, traceability and DNA Technology
Animal identification systems that are cost effective, easy to use, robust, reliable and secure (e.g. RFID ear tags). 

Appropriate software systems for accessibility by industry and relevant institutions (e.g. SAPS) to expand management possibilities associated with animal identification, that can monitor unauthorised movement of animals.

DNA technology that can be a deterrent for stock theft (e.g. Lid Cat) and for forensic investigations


3. Climate-smart livestock production (adaptation and mitigation  for sustainable livestock production)

Understanding of the behavioural and physiological climate-related effects such as heat stress on livestock reproductive efficiency and overall productivity

The effect of climate change on production (weaning weight and post-weaning performance) and fertility is quantified

The effects of climate change on production and reproduction are understood and mitigation strategies are developed

4. Breeding for adaptation and to reduce the environmental impact

Breeding and release of new forage and pasture cultivars with higher nutritive quality, less CH4 emissions during rumen fermentation, resistance to diseases and pests, and tolerance to limiting conditions (soil fertility, drought and low water availability, high temperatures)

New forage and pasture cultivars available, with higher nutritive quality and resistance to diseases, insects and tolerances to limiting conditions (low fertility, drought and low water availability, heat stress etc.) and competition from other plants (weeds and mixtures) to optimise the efficiency of utilisation of veld by livestock

Breeding objectives/selection criteria that (1) improve cow-calf efficiency, (2) increase production per animal unit by improving productivity, and (3) result in less CHG per unit of product.

Alternative feedlot traits (breeding objectives) that will improve efficiency and reduce the environmental impact

Early-in-life and other indicator traits and selection criteria/breeding objectives to improve fertility in beef cows

Reduction in the carbon and water footprint from livestock due to improved productivity including fertility.

5. Manipulation of nutrition/ nutrients to reduce methane/ nutrigenomics

Prediction models developed to estimate methane production from feed quality and nutritive characteristics

Use of feed additives (e.g. Ionophores) and other methods to enhance propionate production in the rumen at the expense of methane as hydrogen acceptor

Long-term strategies to suppress methane production, without detrimental effects on the performance of the animal, have been developed.

Methane production by ruminants is reduced via natural nutritional approaches.

6. Baseline information – carbon and water footprint; effect on biomes and land cover

Techniques to accurately measure GHG, carbon sequestration and the water footprint

Database of national and regional emission figures that is regularly updated according to international (IPCC) specifications in order to evaluate carbon sequestration and the water footprint

Methane results primarily from enteric fermentation of plant material in the digestive tract of animals and its emission is a concern and its should be reduced in livestock farming.

 The livestock sector understands the release of GHG (i.e. the carbon footprint) and water use (i.e. the water footprint) and has developed strategies to ensure future sustainability

Effect of climate change on the biomes, land cover, nutrition and food security in terms of ruminant feed availability, and stability of human food supplies is understood

Effect of climate change on food security is understood, since climate change is associated with changes in temperature, relative humidity, rainfall distribution, etc.

7. Effect of climate change

Seasonal/early warning systems are developed that can inform farmers in time of the prospects of the coming year/season

Farmers adapt the strategies according to the expectations of the coming year/ season, and thereby mitigate the effects of climate change

8. Creating an enabling environment – policy/legislation, programmes, implementation plans

The implications of a carbon tax and offset system for the red meat industry in South Africa are quantified

Proper evaluation of policies and trade agreements to measure the possible implications for the industry

Policies are developed that are conducive to growth and wealth creation in the red meat industry, as well as protecting the environment

Models and systems are in place to determine the impact of exogenous and policy changes

Support to government during trade negotiations that involves the red meat industry