News archive

News archive - September-2012

Highs and lows on the economic front

Increase input and political influence will put a damper on the relief provided by high commodity price in 2013. Briennne van der Walt, managing executive of Absa AgriBusiness, said that 2013 will be a good year for a agriculture, as global commodity prices would hold due to sustained  demand. To download this article, click here.

SA investor image up in flames as Cape burns

THE Western Cape farm strike took a dramatic turn on Thursday as the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) said it had "exhausted its social and political capital" in trying to find a solution to the upheaval, and that the protests were now effectively "out of its hands".

Less than 10% of farm workers in the province, thousands of whom have embarked on violent action in support of their demand that their wages be doubled to R150 a day, belong to unions.

As with the strikes that swept the mining sector last year, organised labour has found itself wrong-footed in its attempts to negotiate on behalf of the workers and end the violence.

11.01.2013 / Agbiz in the news


Quo vadis South African agriculture?

The National Development Plan (Vision 2030) presents a way forward for agriculture, recognising the importance of commercial and smallholder farming and advocating a pragmatic, engaged approach, explains John Purchase, CEO of Agbiz.

South African agriculture again finds itself at a particularly challenging crossroads. While certain sectors and value chains may be in distress and declining (the wheat sector springs to mind), South African agriculture, from an economic perspective, has performed relatively well since the previous major crossroads of deregulation and liberalisation in the mid-1990s.

08.01.2013 / Agbiz in the news


Make sure of demand, aquaculture project warned

TRADE and Industry Minister Rob Davies needs to ensure that there is a potential growth market for the fish products that will be produced by fish farming initiatives launched at the weekend, the Agricultural Business Chamber (Agbiz) said on Monday.

This appeal by Agbiz follows the launch of the aquaculture development and enhancement programme announced on Sunday by the Department of Trade and Industry and the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

The programme aims to promote investment in fish production and to support infrastructure development in an aquaculture industry through active farmer support and management programmes.

11.12.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Agri-sector Unity Forum (ASUF) response to Minister of Labour and COSATU/FAWU press statements

Agri-sector Unity Forum (ASUF), as representative of all major agricultural unions, has noted the statement of clarification by the Minister of Labour, Minister Mildred Oliphant, on the farm worker sectoral determination, as well as noted with concern the responses by COSATU and FAWU.

ASUF again emphasizes its commitment to engage all relevant parties to address the labour unrest and demands with the necessary urgency and responsibility, while working within the prescribed legal and regulatory framework.

ASUF Media Statement»
COSATU & FAWU media reports»
Minister of Labour’s statement»

Minister of Labour’s statement

In the last few months, South Africa has had to contend with a wave of strikes – legal and illegal – in different sectors. Sadly, one of the defining features of these strikes has been the unacceptable and unjustifiable level of violence.

Let me take this opportunity first and foremost and condemn violence in any industrial action. Violence has no place in our society whose foundation as a democracy is based on intensive social dialogue. Nothing yet has proven to work better than the ability to negotiate and reach consensus.

Besides, violence helps neither the strikers nor the employer. Workers would still have to go back to the same workplace they thrash. In fact, even the legitimacy of the strike is called into question when violence is involved.

29.11.2012 / Media Releases


COSATU & FAWU media reports

Cape Town - Failure to meet a deadline for a review of the sectoral determination

for agriculture could result in a repeat of violent strikes, Cosatu said on Tuesday.

29.11.2012 / Media Releases


ASUF Media Statement

Agri-sector Unity Forum (ASUF), as representative of all major agricultural unions, has noted the

statement of clarification by the Minister of Labour, Minister Mildred Oliphant, on the farm worker

sectoral determination, as well as noted with concern the responses by COSATU and FAWU. ASUF

again emphasizes its commitment to engage all relevant parties to address the labour unrest and

demands with the necessary urgency and responsibility, while working within the prescribed legal

and regulatory framework.

29.11.2012 / Media Releases


Dr John Purchase, Agbiz CEO, announced as National Agriculturalist of the Year

Many South African agriculturalists can boast that they are leaders when it comes to either

genetics or economics or policy creation. However, only a few have distinguished

themselves in all of these areas. Dr John Luscombe Purchase (53) is one of these rare jewels

and that is why he deserves to be the Agricultural Writers SA's Agriculturalist of the Year

for 2012. To download this article, click here.

12.11.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Plans to make insurance accessible to small holder farmers

Making crop and livestock insurance accessible to small holder farmers could improve this sectors sustainability.


26.10.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Fewsnet Price Bulletin Novemeber 2012

Most households in Southern Africa depend on maize as their main source of food and energy, given the high volumes and ease with which it is produced. Alternative food crops that are consumed as substitutes include rice, wheat, sorghum, millet, and tubers such as cassava and potatoes. Consumption of these substitutes occurs mainly when maize is not available or among those households in areas where such substitutes are more easily available (for example, cassava in northern Mozambique).


26.10.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Confidence levels in agribusinesses increases

CONFIDENCE levels in the agricultural business sector have increased by 6% in the third quarter despite the political euphoria towards the Mangaung congress of the African National Congress and the Marikana shooting, according to the Agricultural Business Chamber (Agbiz) and the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) released on Monday.

The Lonmin wildcat strike in the Marikana area, close to Rustenburg, attracted international attention in August following a series of violent incidents between the South African Police Service, strikers, non-striking workers and union representatives, which resulted in the deaths of about 50 people and the injury of an additional 78 workers. In addition to the Lonmin strikers, there has since been a wave of wildcat strikes across the South African mining sector that seem not to have affected Agribusiness decision makers who have come up slightly more confident with the environment of doing business in the country.

22.10.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Dr John Purchase acknowledged for outstanding achievements in agriculture

Farmers and Agriculturists acknowledged for outstanding achievements in agriculture
Boere en landboukundiges ontvang erkenning vir uitstaande prestasies in die landbou
News release by the Agricultural Writers SA North on the regional awards for the Farmer, New entrant into
commercial agriculture and Agriculturalist of the Year, 2012
Sponsored by: Monsanto and ABSA.


19.10.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Agbiz Centenary Bursary 2013

The Agricultural Business Chamber, Agbiz has called for applications for its annual bursary of R25 000.

It is available to a South African student registered for a Masters or PhD degree in either agricultural economics or agribusiness management, at any recognised South African university.



18.10.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Agbiz backs World Food Day

THE Agricultural Business Chamber (Agbiz) on Friday supported the declaration by the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) that Tuesday October 16 be dedicated to World Food Day to highlight the challenges of more than 800-million people facing chronic food shortages.

With the theme "Agricultural co-operatives — key to feeding the world", Dr John Purchase, CEO of Agbiz, called on all South Africans not just to celebrate this World Food Day, but also to become more involved in the agro-food industry, which has a significant role in ensuring food security in the country.

12.10.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Agbiz supports World Food Day

The Food and Agricultural Oranization (FAO) of the United Nations has declared 16 October 2012 as World Food Day, with the theme “Agricultural Cooperatives – Key to feeding the world”.

11.10.2012 / Media Releases


Higher SA maize yield puts prices under pressure

With over 1,1 million tons more maize expected from South Africa’s 2011/2012 crop than for the preceding season, local prices have been put under pressure.

The Agricultural Business Chamber (AgBiz) reported that current maize prices dropped from around R2 700/t earlier in the year to about R2 200/t over September 2012. AgBiz CEO Dr John Purchase said that there was a carryover stock of just under 1 million tons of maize from SA’s previous marketing season.

03.10.2012 / Agbiz in the news


AgriSEB beweeg flink

Swart ekonomiese bemagtiging in die landbou (AgriSEB) beweeg nou flink vanaf “die voorneme om te verander” na “gereguleerde verandering” sê dr. John Purchase, hoofbestuurder van die Landboubesigheidskamer (LBK).’’

Purchase het op die SA Varkvleisprodusente-organisasie (Savpo) se simposium gesê die huidige sektorkode is so naby moontlik aan ’n generiese kode vir goeie praktyke omdat dit die speelveld gelyk maak, dit voorspelbaar is en die belofte van ’n gladde oorgang inhou.

Landbou-ondernemings (wat die handelsbanke insluit) sal hul klante (landbouprodusente) voortaan verplig om SEB-telkaarte te voorsien.


28.09.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Bamboo farmers need representation

SOUTH African bamboo farmers should establish a representative body to lobby government departments and to involve them in the development of a bamboo industry development plan, agricultural economics lecturer at the University of Stellenbosch, Dr Daan Louw said last week.

Most successful agricultural and agri-processing industries have organised themselves in organisations, such as Grain SA, Potatoes SA and the Agriculture Business Chamber, among others, to engage authorities about issues, such as policy, that affect their sectors.

27.09.2012 / Agbiz in the news


Landbou se inkomste verbeter

Die produksiewaarde van die akkerboubedrywe het skerp gestyg, maar die intensiewe vee- en tuinboubedrywe kou harde bene omdat produksiekoste vinniger as produkpryse styg.

Die netto inkomste van die landbousektor het in die 12 maande tot einde Junie aansienlik verbeter teenoor die vorige jaar, aldus die nasionale Departement van Landbou, Bosbou en Visserye. Luidens statistieke wat die departement uitgereik het, het die landbousektor se bruto inkomste gestyg tot R161 miljard met ’n sogenoemde netto inkomste van sowat R56,9 miljard.

Dit is die hoogste syfer nog, maar dit weerspieël eerder die skerp stygings in pryse teenoor 2010/’11 as wat dit stygings in produksie verteenwoordig. Juis daarom moet ’n mens die syfers versigtig interpreteer, want inflasiegroei is nie produksiegroei nie.

Die prysstygings van landbouprodukte sou natuurlik ook die landbou se geldelike posisie verbeter deurdat dit sogenoemde ou skuld meer diensbaar maak. Rentekoerse is op die laagste vlak in sowat 40 jaar, wat meebring dat die landbou se skulddelgingsvermoë relatief verbeter het.

21.09.2012 / Agbiz in the news


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