The Indonesian government is making efforts to try to curb beef imports by boosting domestic production capacity, Agriculture Minister Suswono said.
Speaking during a visit on Monday to a cattle ranch in Biromaru, located in the Sigi district of Central Sulawesi, Suswono said that he was optimistic that Indonesia “can reduce beef imports by 15 percent by 2013.”
Suswono said that imports of beef in 2012 were still at around 20 percent of what is needed on a national level, but added that the government was in the process of launching various programs to boost the number of cattle in the region, including in Central Sulawesi.
The government, he said, was also targeting that by 2014 the country could be self-sufficient in its own beef supply.
The government was providing Rp 300 million ($32,000) in aid to each farmer’s group developing cattle ranches in the region, Suswono said.
The minister also expressed his pride over the performance of the local cattle ranch that he was visiting.
The ranch, located in the Boluponto village of Biromaru, has worked on a successful breeding program in which the number of cows on the property has grown from a few to 58.
Central Sulawesi governor Longki Djanggola, said that the cattle population in the province was significantly climbing each year.
In 2009, the cattle population was at 200,000 but in 2010 it rose to 210,000.