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Strong Growth Forecast in Mozambique's Poultry

by 5m Editor
21 October 2011, at 9:34am

MOZAMBIQUE - Poultry output is forecast to increase 23 per cent to 2014/15, according to a new market report.

According to the newly published Mozambique Agribusiness Report Q4 2011 published by Business Monitor International (BMI), over the next few years, there will be strong production growth for Mozambique's sugar industry and poultry meat sectors; both sectors are benefiting from new investments and rising consumption demand.

In the five years to 2015, BMI envisages a steady expansion in output for Mozambique's two leading grain crops, corn and sorghum. These and other agribusiness sub-sectors are currently benefitting from increased investment by both the government and private companies.

One development that is expected to help drive production growth in the sugar and corn sectors is a growing commitment by the Mozambican government to developing biofuels.

Meanwhile, the main downside risks to our grain production forecasts include the sub-sector's continued vulnerability to variable rainfall and associated problems such as drought and flooding. With regard to poultry, the greatest downside risks for production include rising feed costs and disease. Our five-year forecasts also envisage positive demand growth for the consumption of all agribusiness produce; growth will be underpinned by rising incomes and by population expansion.

Key forecasts

  • Corn consumption growth to 2015: 27 per cent to 2.4 million tonnes. Strong consumption growth will occur on the back of a rapidly expanding population, as well as a steady increase in the use of corn as a feed for livestock and poultry.

  • Corn production growth to 2014/15: Nine per cent to 2.11 million tonnes. Weaker production growth reflects the influence of base effects and a 2.8 per cent contraction in output in 2010/11. The fall in output in 2010/11 was due to excessively dry weather followed by rains and floods in southern and central Mozambique. Despite the weaker forecast, corn will remain Mozambique's most widely produced and consumed grain.

  • Sorghum production growth to 2014/15: Nine per cent to 413,000 tonnes. Unlike corn production, unfavourable weather conditions did not seriously affect sorghum output. However, although 2010/11 saw positive production for sorghum, the report expects corn to outperform Mozambique's second most important grain through to 2014/15.

  • Sugar production growth to 2014/15: 65 per cent to 432,000 tonnes. New data from Mozambique's sugar producers and the USDA suggests that the country's sugar industry was on track to produce around 292,000 tonnes of centrifugal sugar in the 2010/11 agricultural year (ending December 2011); this was up by an impressive 11.6 per cent compared to the previous year. As one of Mozambique's key cash crops, long-term production growth will reflect an increase in export-driven demand and the opening-up of new markets; sugar production is also expected to benefit from investment in biofuels.

  • Sugar consumption growth to 2015: 15 per cent to 223,000 tonnes. We have downwardly revised our demand forecast to reflect a more moderate rate of consumption growth through to 2015. Although rising demand for sugar will be driven by rising incomes and by an expanding population, sugar will nevertheless remain a luxury food for many Mozambicans.

  • Poultry production growth to 2014/15: 23 per cent to 52,200 tonnes. BMI holds the view that poultry production increased by a modest 0.2 per cent in 2010/11 to 42,700 tonnes. However, stronger production growth from 2011/12 will be fuelled by rising domestic demand and ongoing investments in improved production techniques. However, poultry consumption will increase by 32 per cent over the same period, reflecting improved living standards and an expanding population.

Key macroeconomic forecasts

  • Mozambique real GDP growth 2012: 7.5 per cent (unchanged on the previous year); predicted to average 7.6 per cent in the five years to 2015. GDP per capita expected to rise to US$1,910 in 2020 (from an estimated US$523 in 2011).

  • Mozambique consumer price inflation 2012: 8.4 per cent, down from an average of 11.6 per cent in 2011; as an importer of significant quantities of wheat, sugar, milk and rice, Mozambique is vulnerable to rising international commodity prices. High prices for these staples inevitably feed inflation, sapping consumer purchasing power.

Key views

Mozambique's agribusiness will continue to benefit from a relatively new wave of 'South-South' investment, which has seen a number of rapidly growing emerging markets – particularly from Asia but also from countries such as Brazil – invest in industries with strong growth potential. In addition, like elsewhere in Africa, Mozambique has begun exploring land leasing opportunities. In August 2011, Brazilian newspaper, Folha de Sao Paulo, reported that Mozambique was preparing to provide large tracts of land at a symbolic price to Brazilian farmers to produce corn, soy and cotton. It is understood that Brazilian farmers will be provided with six million hectares (60,000 square kilometres) in four provinces of northern Mozambique to be farmed under concession for a period of 50 years, renewable for a further 50 years against payment of an annual rent of MZN37.50 (US$1.37) per hectare. According to the newspaper, a delegation of 40 Brazilian farmers was due to travel to Mozambique in September to analyse the land available in Niassa, Cabo Delgado, Nampula and Zambezia provinces.

As global food security becomes increasingly pertinent over the coming years, Mozambique's natural endowment of under-utilised fertile land will become a much more attractive investment proposition. According to the Mozambican government, the country has 36 million hectares of arable land. Only five million of these are currently under cultivation, with the majority by small-scale subsistence farmers. Furthermore, Mozambique has some of the lowest cereal yields in southern Africa. The report expects higher food prices, together with rising domestic demand, to result in new efforts to bring additional land under cultivation. Rising domestic demand will be driven by a young, growing, increasingly wealthy population which will demand ever more goods and services.

Numerous risks and challenges will remain for the foreseeable future, not least in the form of variable weather conditions, according to the report from BMI. Mozambique ranks among the African countries most exposed to risks from multiple weather-related hazards such as floods and droughts. In order to improve the productivity of existing land and bring new land under cultivation, Mozambique's agribusiness companies will need to place an increasing emphasis on new irrigation techniques. Investments in irrigation are expected to result in strong productivity growth for a number of Mozambique's agribusiness sectors over the next few years.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report (fee payable) by clicking here.