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BizDay Zimbabwe

Demand for crocodile skin products on the rise

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Harare, April 01, 2013 – The demand for luxury products which use crocodile skins remain high with Padenga, the company involved in such products, expecting to cull and sell 43 000 skins starting this month.

Padenga operates three farms located on the shores of Lake Kariba in Zimbabwe, producing premium quality skins and meat for export to Europe and Asia. We are one of the largest Nile Crocodile farming operations in Africa and currently supply approximately 33% of the world’s demand for large, high-quality skins.

Crocodiles are sourced from eggs collected from the wild and from the company’s own breeding stock.

“We have developed infrastructure, systems and animal husbandry techniques that allow us to produce a consistent quality and size of skin that differentiates us from other producers and secure our position in the market,” noted the company on its website.

According to the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, Padenga’s interim results including Lone Star Alligator Farms which Padenga acquired in July 2012, the group recorded turnover of USD 3.9m and an operating loss before tax of USD 1.7m.

The results are in line with expectations because of the seasonality of the business.

Padenga received a quality bonus of USD 2.1m from their customers against skins delivered. The operation recorded an operating loss before tax of USD 2.7m. The results are better than anticipated by management as expenses were 3% lower than forecast.

Padenga is still expected to meet full year budgeted profit.

The Zimbabwe operation has seen the company putting focus on egg collection and incubation as well as refurbishment of pen floors and construction of breeder pens at Ume Crocodile Farm.

The annual egg collection and incubation was consistent with the group’s production requirements yielding 58,899 hatchlings. This brought the total grower stock to 168,737 animals, with an additional 4,995 breeders in pens across the three farms.

At Lone Star Alligator Farm the skin quality attained was praiseworthy as the quality grade attained was better than anticipated consequently the price achieved per skin was higher than budgeted.

The annual hatchling procurement programme conducted in August and September 2012 yielded 9,623 animals inducted into pens and these will be culled in October 2013.
The group has managed to double the pens capacity, pens that held 10,000 animals will accommodate 20,000 animals this is in anticipation of volume growth in 2013/14.

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