Irish farmer back for KZN meat

2014-03-21 00:00

AN Irish meat buyer, impressed with the quality and taste of South African beef, travelled all the way to Sweetwaters in Pietermaritzburg, to learn and share information on the cattle industry.

Inkosi Nsikayezwe Zondi was greeted with a bottle of Jameson Irish whiskey from Karl Strehlow, a farming director and fresh-meat buyer from Pettipas SuperValu in south-sast Ireland.

Strehlow shared his Irish tradition with Zondi at the Mpumuza royal palace in Sweetwaters.

He had been invited there by Zondi’s son, Thubelihle Zondi, who is also a cattle breeder, to share his knowledge so they can develop the area that has more than 12 000 herds of cattle.

“I have been producing meat for our supermarkets for 25 years and my visit to Durban two years ago made me realise that meat in this region was tastier. So I decided to come back so that I can learn how things are done here,” said Strehlow.

He said they have always wanted to improve how they produce their beef so that customers return.

“Therefore, it is important to travel around the world to find and share the best practices to improve the product. That is why I will keep coming here to teach and to learn about cattle farming.”

Strehlow said this region had high quality meat and was cheaper than the prices they sold for in Ireland. He said it was also important to teach the community on how the value chain worked so they could also make money out of the cattle they produced.

Zondi said it was his duty as the traditional leader of the Mpumuza Tribal Authority to always find ways of improving the lives of the people.

“Our people have been keeping cattle for years but only selling them per head, and therefore never breaking into the supermarkets, where the money is made,” he said.

• thobani.ngqulunga@witness.co.za

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