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Agriculture News

Bell posts R57m full-year loss, but says order books healthy in most regions

By: Schalk Burger     15th April 2021 A 14% year-on-year decrease in sales for the financial year ended December 31, 2020, has led to JSE-listed materials handing equipment company Bell Equipment reporting a loss after tax of R57.2-million. Additionally, following several years of large expansions in Europe and the US, Bell finds... 

80 students to gain forestry sector skills as part of master plan rollout

By: Schalk Burger     14th April 2021 Under the Forestry Sector Masterplan, which emphasises forestry skills development, about 80 students will participate in the programme at the Fibre Processing and Manufacturing Sector Education and Training Authority (FPM Seta) and the universities of the Witwatersrand and Pretoria. They will... 

Ngqura Container Terminal mobilises to offload reefers in anticipation of citrus season

By: Donna Slater     13th April 2021 With South Africa’s citrus season looming and a global shortage of mobile refrigerated shipping containers (otherwise known as reefers), the Ngqura Container Terminal (NCT), in Port Elizabeth, is mobilising offloading equipment to assist in the offloading of reefers that have been diverted by... 

Ngqura Container Terminal mobilises to offload reefers in anticipation of citrus season

Increase in tanks demand presents challenges

By: Darren Parker     9th April 2021 Despite a global increase in stainless steel tanks production over the past 12 months – particularly for the food and beverage sectors – some subsectors are facing challenges, says stainless steel supplier Columbus Stainless market development manager Lerato Mashigo. “The food and beverage sector... 

Increase in tanks demand  presents challenges
AGES LIKE A FINE WINE Over the recommended life span of a structure, stainless steel becomes more economical because of reduced maintenance and refurbishment required

TWK posts interim profit growth on the back of diverse revenue streams

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th April 2021 Diversified agricultural company TWK says the diversity of its income streams has provided resilience amid the Covid-19 pandemic, resulting in the company posting a 41% year-on-year increase in profit after tax to R90-million for the six months ended February 28. CEO André Myburgh points out... 

For South African agriculture, 2020 was a very good year

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd April 2021 South African agriculture had a “remarkable year” last year, the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Production (BFAP) has reported. This was despite the Covid-19 pandemic, which caused all other sectors of the South African economy (except government services) to contract. While the national... 

Two Wits students focus on agritech for cannabis industry

By: Creamer Media Reporter      1st April 2021 Two master’s students at the University of Witwatersrand (Wits), Constant Beckerling and Anlo van Wyk, are developing new technologies aimed at disrupting the booming cannabis, or so called ‘green gold’, industry. Their novel cannabis cultivation technologies, developed for the African climate,... 

Two Wits students focus on agritech for cannabis industry
Constant Beckerling and Anlo van Wyk

Western Cape launches e-booklets to fast-track climate change resilience in agriculture

By: Yvonne Silaule     31st March 2021 The Western Cape provincial government has launched e-booklets that will help to fast-track climate change resilience in agriculture. The e-booklet on climate change entitled The Mercury Rises is based on the popular award-winning radio series Die Kwik Styg. The e-booklets are available in the... 

Moody's withdraws all ratings of South Africa's Land Bank for 'business reasons'

By: Reuters     30th March 2021 Ratings agency Moody's said on Tuesday it was withdrawing all ratings of South Africa's cash-strapped state-owned Land and Agricultural Development Bank, citing "its own business reasons" for the move. Moody's did not elaborate on why it had taken the decision in the statement, but policy... 

Afgri Animal Feeds completes acquisition of pet food facility

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th March 2021 Afgri Animal Feeds, has completed its acquisition of the Martin & Martin dry pet food facility, a South African pet food manufacturing facility based in Isando. Afgri Animal Feeds is a division of Philafrica Foods and QSA Holdings, which is in turn a Queally family European holding company.  

Fruit SA appoints Titi-Msumza chair

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th March 2021 Industry organisation Fruit South Africa (Fruit SA) has appointed Vangile Titi-Msumza chairperson, while Anton Kruger will take up the role of vice chairperson, effective April 1. Titi-Msumza is succeeding Justin Chadwick.  

Transnet Port Terminals gearing up for successful citrus season

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th March 2021 Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) says it is gearing up for another successful citrus season this year, following a 16% year-on-year increase in the volumes handled last year – the highest ever recorded. This comes despite disruptions within the supply chain brought about by Covid-19. 

Industry can grow with diverse solutions – institute

By: Cameron Mackay     26th March 2021 The best growth scenario for the local sugar industry is to diversify its products to create multiple revenue streams, says research organisation the Sugar Milling Research Institute NPC (SMRI) strategic research group leader Dr Kitty Foxon. Biochemicals and bio-materials from sugar cane-derived... 

Company plays maintenance role

26th March 2021 Engineering solutions specialist BMG plays a critical role in the sugar sector, not only during the operational period of sugar production, but also in off-crop seasons, when maintenance and refurbishment on sugar farms and at mills is essential. BMG works closely with sugar farmers and engineers... 

Company plays maintenance role
INDUSTRY BACKING BMG works with sugar farmers and engineers at mills by providing components and support services to enhance production, minimise downtime and extend equipment service life

Master plan to help industry diversify

By: Cameron Mackay     26th March 2021 The implementation of South African Sugarcane Value Chain Master Plan can help the sugar industry diversify its revenue streams and build support for local sugar production, according to local sugar producer Tongaat Hulett’s Sugar MD Simon Harvey. The sugar master plan seeks to create diversified... 

Master plan to help industry diversify
MAKING ENDS SWEET This creation of new revenue streams will help sustain the local sugar industry and can potentially increase employment

Master plan boosting limping industry

By: Cameron Mackay     26th March 2021 With the sugar industry starting to show signs of recovery after years of decline, South African Sugar Association (Sasa) executive director Trix Trikam says the implementation of the South African Sugarcane Value Chain Master Plan to 2030 will further help the industry stabilise. The master plan... 

Company designs, manage transloading station

26th March 2021 Project engineering, construction and operations management group Bosch Holdings was appointed as the consulting engineer for the design and project management of a new cane transloading station in Mkuze, after the completion of a feasibility study. The new facility will assist small-scale... 

Company designs, manage transloading station
IMPROVING TRANSPORT EFFICIENCY The new cane transloading station facility will assist small-scale sugarcane farmers in the Makhathini region

Industry master plan supported

26th March 2021 Non-profit trade organisation FairPlay Movement enthusiastically supports the South African Sugar Master Plan as a mechanism to stabilise and rebuild the industry after devastating and predatory imports have gained market share and killed local jobs for years. “Like the poultry sector master plan... 

Agriculture seen as key just transition enabler in Mpumalanga, but arable land needs urgent safeguarding 

By: Terence Creamer     25th March 2021 Transitioning Mpumalanga’s coal-heavy economy to higher levels of agricultural output could help create new businesses and jobs and improve the long-term economic resilience of the province as mines close and Eskom begins decommissioning power stations in line with the Integrated Resource Plan of... 

Agriculture seen as key just transition enabler in Mpumalanga, but arable land needs urgent safeguarding

Changes to water-use licence issuing powers to help agricultural industry, says AgriSA

By: Schalk Burger     23rd March 2021 Agricultural industry organisation AgriSA has welcomed the decision by the Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) acting director-general Deborah Mochotlhi to give regional DWS offices and catchment management agencies the power to issue water-use licences for low-risk and low-volume... 

Agriculture bodies call for increased access to growing Brics markets

By: Schalk Burger     23rd March 2021 The Agricultural Business Chamber of South Africa (Agbiz), industry organisations Agri SA, the African Farmers’ Association of South Africa (Afasa), the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy (BFAP) and the National African Farmers’ Union (Nafu) have met with the Department of Trade, Industry... 

USAID provides four investment funds with capital for SME, emerging farmer growth in Southern Africa

By: Schalk Burger     19th March 2021 The US Agency for International Development (USAID) has awarded catalytic funding to four investment vehicles to drive inclusive economic growth in Southern Africa. As a result, R357-million ($24-million) in private sector investment will go towards supporting small and medium-sized enterprises... 

Biogas holds great power generation potential

By: Halima Frost     19th March 2021 South Africa has the potential to generate upwards of 10 000 MW of power if it were to harness and capitalise on all biogas opportunities, however, the greatest challenge is not a lack of capacity but more the lack of market opportunity, says Southern African Biogas Industry Association (Sabia)... 

Biogas holds great power generation potential
POWER-TENTIAL Biogas has the potential to contribute significantly to the power mix in South Africa and globally

Gas can decrease emissions in power generation

By: Halima Frost     19th March 2021 With power generation being accountable for 41% of current global carbon emissions, which amount to about 33.7 Gt/y of carbon dioxide (CO2), multinational conglomerate General Electric Company (GE) believes that gas can play a vital role in decreasing carbon emissions. “Gas burns at less than... 

Gas can decrease emissions in power generation
TURNING GAS TO POWER The HA turbine supplied by GE has made significant inroads into the energy sector since its introduction

Drone merger expands group offering

19th March 2021 The merger between Israeli drone safety company ParaZero and international drone services provider Delta Drone South Africa has resulted in the relisting of drones-as-a-service company Delta Drone International, based in Australia, on the Australian Securities Exchange to begin trading again from... 

South Africa launches fund to boost Black farming

By: Reuters     18th March 2021 South Africa has set up a R5-billion fund to help Black farmers gain access to capital and boost their role in commercial agriculture, state-owned Industrial Development Corporation and the government said on Thursday. The joint Agri-Industrial Fund is aimed at easing the funding constraints and... 

South Africa launches fund to boost Black farming

South Africa sets up R1bn fund to assist black farmers 

By: Bloomberg     18th March 2021 South Africa announced the establishment of a R1-billionfund to help small-scale Black farmers enter commercial agricultural production. The Department of Agriculture will provide money and it will be run by the Industrial Development Corp., a state-owned development bank. The IDC will also... 

Higher first-quarter confidence reflects green shoots in agri sector

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th March 2021 The Agricultural Business Chamber (Agbiz)/Industrial Development Corporation Agribusiness Confidence Index (ACI) improved to 64 in the first quarter of 2021, compared with 61 in the fourth quarter last year. Agbiz says these results likely reflect the robust performance of South Africa's... 

South African agriculture continued to enjoy good results during 2020’s last quarter 

By: Rebecca Campbell     16th March 2021 In addition to its review of the South African agricultural sector during the whole of last year, the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Production (BFAP) also included, in its latest report, an overview of the sector’s performance during the last quarter of 2020 (4Q20). In terms of the national... 

For South African agriculture, 2020 was a very good year

By: Rebecca Campbell     16th March 2021 South African agriculture had a “remarkable year” last year, the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Production (BFAP) has reported. This was despite the Covid-19 pandemic, which caused all other sectors of the South African economy (except government services) to contract.  While the national... 

Sugar Master Plan contributing to industry’s growth – Patel

By: Donna Slater     15th March 2021 Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel last week told farmers, millers, retailers, food producers and trade unions that the implementation of the Sugar Master Plan is resulting in signs of growth during a virtual briefing. Detailing the progress in implementing the master plan,... 

Motsepe Foundation's agricultural development project working towards sustainable land reform

By: Schalk Burger     12th March 2021 Sustainable agricultural development and land reform is hobbled because of the challenge to acquire and provide title deeds and other land security, which makes it difficult for banking and other financial institutions to partner, co-fund and finance agriculture and land reform projects, the... 

TATA International Africa sets up finance offering, uptime strategy supports growth

By: Schalk Burger     12th March 2021 Trading and distribution company TATA International Africa's uptime strategy has allowed it to improve turnover and profitability over the past year. It also supports the pursuit of its growth and expansion objectives, says TATA International Africa CEO Len Brand. 

Food systems ‘integral’ to Covid-19 recovery, says AfDB

By: Simone Liedtke     12th March 2021 The strengthening of food systems must be an integral part of efforts to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic and to build resilience in Africa, said African Development Bank (AfDB) director general for Southern Africa Leila Mokaddem. In a statement on March 12, she lamented that “hunger is a... 

Five predictions driving transformation in industry

12th March 2021 The unforeseen disruption experienced in 2020 has prompted food and beverage producers to futureproof their businesses as far as is possible, says business cloud software solutions provider Infor Europe, Middle East and Africa solution consulting VP Phil Lewis. 

Five predictions driving transformation in industry
PHIL LEWIS New technologies such as the Internet of Things will become crucial in facilitating the granularity required to minimise waste while maximising output

Stable exports despite bans, owing to great market support

12th March 2021 The 2020 export volumes of wine, at 319.2-million litres, echo those of a challenging 2019, despite a five-week-long ban on exports and huge challenges at the Cape Town Port terminal owing to the global Covid-19 pandemic. 

Stable exports despite bans,  owing to great market support
INTERNATIONAL FOOTPRINT The overall value of the country’s wine exports increased by 7.7% to R9.1-billion in. 2020

Proactive maintenance solutions prevent inefficiencies

12th March 2021 Engineering components manufacturer Danfoss has strengthened its Alsense Internet of Things (IoT) services with a holistic store-level software suite – moving store maintenance from reactive to proactive. 

Proactive maintenance solutions prevent inefficiencies
TECH-FORWARD APPROACH The Internet of Things services enables food retailers to prioritise and reduce their maintenance efforts across stores and critical events
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