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Swakara again the black diamond of the south

Jaco van Zyl of Agra assisted by the Customs and Excise crew at Hosea Kutako International Airport loading a consignment of more than 55,000 swakara pelts for auction in Denmark next week.

Jaco van Zyl of Agra assisted by the Customs and Excise crew at Hosea Kutako International Airport loading a consignment of more than 55,000 swakara pelts for auction in Denmark next week.

The weak Namibia Dollar is bad news for the price of fuel but it is good news for local exporters. Given the recent extreme weakness of the currency, Swakara pelts should set new records in local currency, at next week’s fur auction in Denmark. Last week, more than 55,000 pelts were dispatched to Kopenhagen. And despite all the protests from the anti-fur lobby, Swakara as a fashion fur, has made a dramatic comeback as an upmarket commodity. Swakara is known locally as the black diamond, indicating its exclusivity and high value.
Agra’s House of Swakara sent a consignment of 55099 Swakara pelts from Hosea Kutako International Airport (HKIA) to Copenhagen, in Denmark, to be auctioned on 08 September 2013. The consignment has an estimated value of N$ 9 million. Agra serves Swakara producers by marketing their pelts internationally, as mandated by the Karakul (Swakara) Board of Namibia.
A delegation consisting of representatives from Agra and the Swakara producers will attend the auction. The producers are co-funded by the Young Farmers Development Programme under the Swakara Producers’ Fund (SPF), and comprise Johan Hartung, Eevoka de Jager, Andre de Jager and Lucas Apollus. These producers will see first-hand how the auction is conducted as well as interact with international buyers of various types of furs.
At the previous auction in April, Swakara fetched the highest average price in Namibia Dollars ever paid for Swakara pelts. The average price was N$696.68 per pelt, an increase of 6.54% over the September 2012 auction. The value of the total offer of 71,961 Swakara pelts was more than N$50 million.
At that auction, the top Namibian producer was once again Lovedale Farming CC from Keetmanshoop, who sold 444 pelts at an average price of N$1047.64 per pelt. The top South African producer was Hannes Vlok, who achieved an average price of R916.42 per pelt.
Wessel Visser, Agra ProVision’s Manager of Social Business & Services said “for more than 30 years, Agra supported and advocated Swakara pelt production as a viable alternative farming practice, presented training to producers to improve the quality and quantity of pelts, professionally sorted the pelts at the House of Swakara and represented Namibian producers at international platforms such as; fur auctions, trade forums and fashion & design exhibitions.” Agra ProVision is Agra’s professional services division.
In Windhoek, the auction can be followed via live streaming at the House of Swakara on 08 September. This session is arranged by Jaco van Zyl of Agra and is open to the public.

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