Camel Meat Could Become Newest Australian Export
April 18, 2011
If an Egyptian businessman is successful with his bid to open a slaughterhouse and meat processing plant in a South Australian town, camel meat could become the newest Australian export, reports Reuters Life! Magdy El Ashram''s ambitions would reduce the feral camel population in the Australian outback that has caused serious ecological problems, and create up to 300 jobs. Originally introduced in 1840, there are currently more than 1 million feral camels roaming over 3 million square km of outback Australia, breeding at a rate that doubles their population every nine years. The Australian Federal Government has provided A$19 million ($20 million) over four years to assist in managing feral camels, and a camel culling program began in 2010. The animals cause more than A$10 million a year in damage to fragile outback ecosystems. El Ashram said he applied to the Port Pirie rural council for permission to develop what would eventually be the largest abattoir in Australia, capable of processing 100,000 animals a year. This would also include donkey and goat meat destined for the Middle East, North Africa and Asia.