This year less than half Zambia's beef requirements are expected to be met from domestic sources and already shortages are beginning to make themselves felt.
Various shots at petrol stations as cars fill up; cattle; butchers' shops; milkman delivering milk.
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Background: This year less than half Zambia's beef requirements are expected to be met from domestic sources and already shortages are beginning to make themselves felt. The situation has become aggravated since compulsory sanctions were introduced against Rhodesia, formerly Zambia's main source of external supply, and Rhodesia stopped supplies.
Attempts to get supplies from other sources have met with difficulty. A drought in Botswana has meant that supplies from there have fallen far short of the amount needed to fill the gap, and carcasses shipped on Rhodesian railways have, in same cases, rotted because of the recent embargo on goods bound for Zambia.
Local producers, many of whom are leaving Zambia, have been selling non-beef cattle to butchers and dairy herds are gradually being run down for slaughter, resulting in another shortage -- milk. With the "national herd" dwindling the Zambian Government is taking steps to establish state ranches.
Although short of meat the Zambian motorist may soon have cause for celebration. Period rationing may be eased next month and by July disappear altogether. Private motorists are at the moment limited to ten gallons a month and with many of them living considerable distances from their work it has proved a real hardship.
Public transport is virtually non-existent and with Zambia's trade routes already overloaded, bicycles are not considered an essential import.