The Impact of Foot and Mouth Disease on the Beef Industry in Botswana: The Case of Tonota Village
Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) is a communicable disease found in cloven-hoofed wild and domestic animals. It is one of the major livestock diseases which have a great economic impact on the livelihood of livestock farmers. This study looks at the impact of foot and mouth disease on Botswana's beef industry. The study used primary data collected through survey questionnaires and interviews. Impact studies were done to assess the impact of FMD on the weight of cattle, level of milk production, continued interest in farming after FMD and the control and prevention cost impact to the economy. The findings show that FMD results in loss of weight in cattle (13.2%), loss in milk production (23.1%), a decrease in draught power (27.5%), a decline in fertility (14.3%), the death of newborns and suckling calves (22%). Recommendations to curb this outbreak include public education, frequent vaccinations of cattle coupled with subsidies of medications for the vaccines and the use of restrictive grazing.
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