Meat into Botswana & Namibia



At the Pont Drift border post nobody wanted to inspect the vehicle or asked for details of any food in the vehicle.

  • Vet Control Gate (foot & mouth disease check point) 14 km from Pont Drift border post on the Transit road. He noticed the small cooler box through the side window and wanted to see the contents. Our sosaties and bread for dinner were inside. He did not ask to see the freezer, and we think he assumed that this was the only meat inside the vehicle.
  • Vet Control Gate when we entered Selebi Phikwe town from the east. They waved us through.
  • Vet Control Gate 10km north of Serule on the A1 to Francistown. This control post was manned by police, who just waved us through.
  • Vet Control Gate at Dukwi – 50 km before Nata on the A3. Two officials manning the gate and the one came to us and just stated that he is very thirsty and would really appreciate a Coke. We gave them each a Coke and they waved us through.
  • Vet Control Gate near Elephant Sands entrance – 50 km north of Nata on the A3. All traffic coming from the north were inspected. They waved us through.


No vet control points on the road between Kasane and Katima Mulilo

At the Ngoma border post nobody inspected any vehicle.



There are a lot of questions regarding taking meat for own consumption into these two countries from South Afica.

There are two issues here:

* Border post allowance without needing a permit
* Veterinary fences for outbreaks of foot and mouth diseases and other infectuous diseases that may threaten the country lifestock – also fruit and vegetables in some cases confiscated due to fruit flies.

It is easy to get hold of the border allowances on the internet, but the ‘red line fence’ information is not easily obtainable. Reports from people travelling where the vet line inspectors confiscate meat and fresh goods are all over the forums, and the question is how does it work, and where may we transport these foods for own consumption.

Bottom line understanding of our research:

* Both countries have an area marked as infected and the rest of the country is not infected.
* One may NOT transport meat from the infected area into the non-infected area. At these vet line border controls (if travelling in direction towards non-infected area) they WILL confiscate meat and other fresh food. If travelling towards the other direction there will normally not be an issue.   Generally people explain that you may not take meat from north to south and from west to east. The maps below explain it better – also visible on T4A maps.
* Moving around within the infected area, they should not confiscate anything, but reports are that it happens frequently, also when there are no outbreaks of diseases.  However, during any disease outbreak, fresh food WILL be confiscated within the infected areas

Botswana red line:


Namibia red line:


What we did:

Our challenge is that we want to take meat from South Africa into the red line area of Botswana and from there (Kasane) into the red line area of Namibia ( through Caprivi) and out into Zambia.

From the information we gathered we decided to fill our freezer with the meat of our choice and to minimise the risks we did the following:

We phoned the relevant government department (veterinary) of Botswana as well as Namibia and asked them to confirm

* That the official border allowance list is still valid
* No current disease outbreak situation that prevents us from taking the allowed fresh food through the specific area of our trip
* Whether it is permitted to take the food through from Botswana red line area to Namibia red line area
* Name and telephone number of official we spoke to and whether we may quote them if we encounter problems with the vet inspection posts.

We also printed copies of the official documents from the websites stating what foods may be taken in or out of these areas as reference should we encounter problems.