News archive

News archive - November-2017

SA agricultural trade balance increased to R38.6 billion in October 2017

South Africa’s agricultural exports increased to a cumulative value of R123.8 billion by end of October 2017 driven by solid performance from fruits, sugar, dairy and grains products. By end of October 2017, agricultural exports recorded a positive growth rate of 1.6 percent whereas imports decline by 4.1 percent as compared to the corresponding period last year - Sifiso Ntombela, Agbiz Head: International Trade and Investment Intelligence

01.12.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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PPI UPDATE: SA food products price inflation decelerates to 0.4% y/y

After slowing to 1.3% y/y in September 2017, the headline food products’ price inflation further decelerated to 0.4% last month. This reflects the benefits of a large harvest in the 2016/17 production season, particularly grain related products - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist

30.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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High level panel on key legislation reveals challenges in the implementation of land reform legislation

A high level parliamentary committee headed up by former President Kgalema Mothlante released their highly-anticipated report this past week. The committee was tasked at investigating the implementation of key legislation aimed at catalyzing fundamental change in South Africa. The issue of land reform was central to its study - Theo Boshoff, Agbiz Head: Legal Intelligence

30.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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Major trends in the agro-food system in South Africa

We live in a world of constant change, but one thing that remains a constant is that people must eat daily to meet their dietary needs for an active and healthy life. For this reason people across the world need to have physical, social and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food. Key to this access to food is the issue of affordability. This is the reason governments across the world introduce policies to develop agro-food systems in their respective countries that ensure food security for the population - Dr John Purchase, Agbiz CEO

30.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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Was Zimbabwe the breadbasket of Africa before its land reform programme?

There is a commonly held view that Zimbabwe used to be the breadbasket of Africa, although the specific timeframe is unclear.  This vague narrative gives an impression that Zimbabwe lost its “breadbasket” status during former President Robert Mugabe’s tenure. While Mugabe’s land reform programme seemingly contributed to a decline in Zimbabwe’s agricultural output, there’s limited evidence to suggest that the country was a dominant player in Africa’s food production prior to that period - at least from a staple food production perspective Wandile Sihlobo & Sifiso Ntombela

29.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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Communal land and expropriation without compensation

2017 has seen an unprecedented number of policy proposals to accelerate land reform in South Africa. Some of the proposals have been bold and progressive, such as giving title to communities living communally on state land, and one must give credit where credit is due. Sadly, these positive strides could be undermined by potentially harmful proposals such as amending the constitution to allow for expropriation of land without compensation - Theo Boshoff, Agbiz Head: Legal Intelligence

09.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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Western Cape drought weighs on broader agricultural economy

When it comes to agriculture, the Western Cape province is essential - not only because of its production of fine wines, but also because of its contribution to South Africa’s agricultural labour market and the broader economy - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist (*This column first appeared on Business Day, 09 November 2017).

09.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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UPDATE: SA tractor sales at the highest level in 20 months

After declining by 5% m/m in September 2017, the South African tractor sales increased by 28% m/m in October 2017, recorded at 704 units - the highest monthly sales since February 2016. This is somewhat unsurprising given that it is a planting season and farmers need reliable tractors - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist

06.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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25 000 job cuts recorded in SA agriculture in Q3, 2017

After cutting 84 000 jobs in the first half of 2017, South Africa’s agricultural sector saw a further 25 000 jobs lost in the third quarter. This puts the combined agricultural job cuts for the past three quarters of this year at 109 000. About 84% of the third quarter job losses were in the Western Cape, which reflects the impact of the continued drought on agricultural activity in the province - Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist

02.11.2017 / Agbiz in the news

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