An update from B+LNZ and the MIA: Livestock processing capacity changes

// Industry

We want to give you an update on how the global supply chain issues caused by COVID-19 are impacting the red meat sector.

There remains significant port congestion, vessel schedule changes and a shortage of containers, which is causing bottlenecks and increased costs across the supply chain. 

This disruption has implications for farmers and red meat processors/exporters.

Processing companies must always ensure the volume of livestock inflows to their plants matches their ability to secure available shipping containers, ship the products to global markets and manage their inventory.

These global supply chain issues have forced some processors to adjust processing capacity in some areas until the situation improves.

The situation is compounded by the shortage of labour at some plants and the ongoing dry weather in parts of the country. We know some farmers are under pressure with limited feed conditions.

Some meat processing companies have the ability to manage livestock flows in areas affected by extreme dry condition including moving animals to other plants for processing.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand and the Meat Industry Association are encouraging farmers to talk to their processor to understand exactly how it will affect them.

Farmers can also download Beef + Lamb New Zealand resources on managing through extreme dry conditions. Making use of tools such as Feedsmart ( to allocate and budget feed is important.

Farmers also need to look after themselves, their families and their staff. It’s a good idea to make time to get off-farm and also ask others for help. That could be the accountant, bank manager, vet or the Rural Support Trust.

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