South Africa’s agricultural sector has an auspicious outlook, albeit, challenges such as policy uncertainty and climate change remain dark clouds over the sector. In 2017, South Africa’s agricultural exports grew past US$10.0 billion for the first time, boosted by growth in exports of edible fruits, beverages, spirits, vegetables, grains and other agricultural products. This is a 15 percent increase from 2016 – a year that was characterised by El Niño induced drought - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz Economist and Head Agribusiness Research
They say an apple does not fall far from the tree, this seems to hold when comparing the current and old policies developed in the agricultural sector. Some policies such as land, marketing, infrastructure and training have been repealed and replaced over the past two decades to correct the structural imbalances caused by historic laws between commercial and emerging farming. However, their design and implementation processes tend to either maintain or exacerbate the situation leading to more marginalized emerging farmers and increasing rate of food insecure households in the country - Sifiso Ntombela, Trade economist and Agbiz Head International Trade and Investment
Agbiz is verheug dat Nene en Pravin terug is, maar is spreek sy kommer uit oor die nuwe minister van grondsake en landelike ontwikkeling, Me Maite Nkoana-Mashabane wat voorheen minister van internasionale verhoudinge en samewerking was. Dr Purchase sê hy vind dit interessant dat minister Nkwinti van grondsake en landelike ontwikkeling aangestel is as minister van water en sanitasie.
Standard Bank will again be the main sponsor for the 2018 Agbiz Congress, themed “Uncertain Creates Opportunity”, which will be held at the Boardwalk International Convention Centre in Port Elizabeth, on Thursday 7 June and 8 June 2018. To take advantage of the early-bird rates, please register and pay before 10 March 2018.
“Agbiz has noted with deep concern the principle resolution on expropriation of land without compensation that was agreed to in Parliament yesterday,” Dr John Purchase, CEO of Agbiz, said today.
South Africa’s grain and oilseed market could be well supplied in the 2018/19 marketing season owing to expectations of relatively large maize and soybean harvest. The National Crop Estimates Committee placed its first production estimates for maize at 12.2 million tonnes, which is well above our estimate of 11.2 million tonnes, albeit having declined by 27% from the 2016/17 production season – this is still above the annual consumption of 10.5 million tonnes - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist
Food and non-alcoholic beverages inflation have been on a downward trend since mid-2017, following a robust output from the agricultural sector. In January 2018, food inflation further decelerated to 4.5% y/y, which is the lowest levels in more than two years. With that said, the food basket remains mixed. The livestock products (meat, milk, eggs and cheese) are slightly elevated, whereas the rest is on a slowing path - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist
Agbiz strongly welcomes the State of the Nation Address by newly elected President Cyril Ramaphosa today, and especially welcomes the general thrust of his SONA’s focus on revitalising the economy and the commitment to root out corruption. The new approach in the 2018 SONA of instilling a changed vision of hope, unity, service and prosperity is necessary to turn South Africa around to achieve Nelson Mandela’s dedication to a fair, just and decent society - John Purchase, Agbiz CEO
Food security remains a topical issue in many African countries, where maize is, by and large, the staple food. Kenya remains a net importer of maize, following a harsh drought in the 2016/17 production season. The thin resources available in Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe remain stretched as drought and fall armyworms threaten the 2017/18 maize production season. South Africa also started the 2017/18 production season on a bad footing, as I highlighted in this column the difficulties brought by extreme dryness in the western sections of the Free State and North West provinces at the beginning of the year - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist
Where do these chocolates come from? (Hint: not your significant other) - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist