Padenga’s alligator operations rebound as business overcomes legacy double scale drawback

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  • Skin volumes were 27% up
  • Business registered 11% turnover increase
  • FY20 harvest crop continues to improve and targeted quality grades are achievable.

Harare – Padenga’s alligator operations’ full year 2019 performance bounced back from the poor performance registered in 2018 which resulted from the compromised quality of skins.

Skin volumes in the year under review were up 27% compared to the comparable prior period with 17 176 skins being achieved in the year from 13 500 skins in 2018.

The increase in volumes resulted in the company recording an 11% increase in turnover to US$ 3 596 803 from US$ 3 251 345 in 2018.

However, a loss before tax of US$99 338 was registered for the year.

Padenga Chairperson, Mr. Thembinkosi Sibanda said in the year under review, the company achieved significant advances in understanding the cause and nature of the legacy double scale issue that arose in 2017 and although this continued to impact the quality of skins in 2019, the company is working its way out of the problem.

“Knowledge gained in the research into double scale has led to changes in feed formulations and monthly monitoring of metabolic enzyme levels as pathology allows us to track physiological health enabling us to adjust mineral/vitamin levels to eliminate double scale going forward”, Mr Sibanda said.

In order reduce costs, Padenga harvested the carryover crop from FY2018 that was deemed not to meet the required premium quality standards for the alternative market albeit at depressed margins.

The quality of skin grades achieved on the FY19 harvest crop improved over that of prior year but was still not of sufficient quality for the current market.

At the end of the period under review, the operation had a total of 25 128 alligators in pens.

Hatchling procurement was completed in September with a total of 7 867 hatchlings received this being in line with expectations.

An additional total of 5 007 yearling animals were procured for grow-out into both medium and large sized skins to optimize TCR’s future revenue earnings.

Mr. Sibanda said the operation’s FY20 harvest crop continues to improve and targeted quality grades are achievable.

Demand for watchband sized and low-grade skins has declined and is expected to continue into 2020 due to the corona virus which broke out in December 2019.

Padenga has responded to the changes by targeting to only produce medium and large skins.

“We have reduced volumes and reduced stocking densities to achieve the quality grades demanded”, Mr. Sibanda said.

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