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Agriculture News

Agribusiness Confidence Index jumps to 61 in the fourth quarter  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     Updated 6 hours ago The Agricultural Business Chamber/Industrial Development Corporation Agribusiness Confidence Index has rallied to 61 points in the fourth quarter – its highest level since the third quarter of 2014. This followed a notable recovery to 51 points in the third quarter of the year, implying that... 

Invicta’s strategy paying off, says CEO

By: Simone Liedtke     30th November 2020 Investment holding and management company Invicta Holdings is starting to see its strategy, which focuses on lowering debt levels, optimising return on equity, simplifying structures and focusing on key operational areas, pay off. This is despite the negative impact of Covid-19 and related... 

Agri SA calls for govt aid as Land Bank is too important to fail

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th November 2020 Industry organisation Agri SA has warned that the action by Moody’s Investor Service to lower the Lank Bank and Eskom’s respective ratings pose a risk to food security and overall economic recovery in South Africa. It says Moody’s downgraded the State-owned Land Bank as a result of ongoing... 

First group of Western Cape agriculture drone pilots receive their wings

By: Yvonne Silaule     27th November 2020 The first group of Western Cape Department of Agriculture drone pilots received their wings this week. The department assisted the group to successfully sit for the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) examination to obtain their remote pilot licences. Training was provided by Drone-X,... 

Awaiting South African bailout, land bank locks out farmers

By: Bloomberg     19th November 2020 One of the biggest lenders to South African farmers can’t take on new clients or meet half the needs of existing customers until it gets another government bailout to keep operating. The state-owned Land and Agricultural Development Bank has asked the National Treasury for R7-billion to ease its... 

Sapa acknowledges Master Plan progress

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     17th November 2020 The South African Poultry Association (Sapa) has noted “positive gains” that have been made towards increasing South Africa's exports of poultry. This is one of the key objective of the Poultry Industry Master Plan, aimed at growing the industry, which is being driven by Trade, Industry and... 

IFC invests in Mali quicklime, agriculture lime producer

By: Creamer Media Reporter      17th November 2020 The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has invested in Malian quicklime and agriculture lime producer Carrières et Chaux du Mali (CCM) to help the company increase production of these products, which are essential inputs for the country's agriculture and... 

Govt, industry sign the sugar master plan

By: Creamer Media Reporter      17th November 2020 Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel, Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza and sugar industry stakeholders have signed the Sugar Industry Master Plan. As part of the master plan, industrial users and retailers have agreed to minimum offtake of... 

Govt, industry sign the sugar master plan
A sugarcane plantation

Digital network launched to support wine sector

13th November 2020 The Western Cape government, in partnership with agency for tourism, trade and investment promotion for Cape Town and the Western Cape, Wesgro, as well as wine marketing specialists Wines of South Africa (WoSA), have announced the launch of the Cape Export Network (CEN). Launched in September,... 

Digital network launched to support wine sector
TECH TALK The Cape Export Network uses technology to introduce producers and buyers on a secure platform

Pumping with flavour for multiproduct lines 

By: Halima Frost     13th November 2020 Industrial equipment supplier Verder Group has recently redesigned the structure of its hygienic brands – this included rebranding and adding sanitary pump supplier JEC JR’s series of pumps to its diverse pumping portfolio under Packo.  The Packo JRZS series of twin-screw pumps are suited to the... 

Pumping with flavour for multiproduct lines
Verder Pumps Hygienic Product manager Kenneth Demeulemeester discusses the growing demand for multi-product lines in the brewery and winery industry. Camerawork: Halima Frost. Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 19.10.20

Didiza gives update on release of State-owned land

By: Donna Slater     10th November 2020 Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza says her department, on October 1, advertised 529 000 ha of land, amounting to 894 farms across South Africa for release on October 15. “The advert was to run for a month ending November 15,” she says. This forms part of the... 

Greenpeace urges African countries to lead climate developments on the continent

By: Sane Dhlamini     9th November 2020 Not for profit environmental organisation Greenpeace has called on African countries to lead the development of new climate databases and models rather than depend on other countries as future average temperatures on the continent are projected to increase at a rate faster than the global average... 

Greenpeace urges African countries to lead climate developments on the continent

Shift in strategy to maximise offering

By: Halima Frost     6th November 2020 Bearings manufacturer and distributor SKF held a virtual webinar last month to discuss the company’s three-pronged strategy shift to better meet client requirements.  “The strategy has encouraged every part of the company to rethink the way it works, especially SKF’s core research and development... 

Shift in strategy to maximise offering
LEARNING CURVE The ability to re-look at the company's research and development strategy has been important to SKF during the Covid-19 pandemic

New bearing brand well received

By: Halima Frost     6th November 2020 Bearings and accessories distributor Bearings International (BI) says the range from bearing manufacturer Craft Bearings has drawn a positive response across different sectors, with notable successes in the food and beverage, agriculture and mining sectors. “BI was granted the status of exclusive... 

New bearing brand well received
COMPREHENSIVELY CRAFTY The comprehensive range of Craft Bearings is now being distributed in South African and it's neighbouring countries

Bearings supplier awarded distributorship  

By: Halima Frost     6th November 2020 Bearing manufacturer and distributor ISO Bearings South Africa has launched a substantial marketing drive to announce its being a distributor of bearing manufacturer FYH Bearings in Southern and South Africa. ISO Bearings GM Bennie van Niekerk tells Engineering News that the new brand was... 

Bearings supplier awarded distributorship
ISO Bearings GM Bennie van Niekerk discusses the company’s becoming a distributor of the FYH brand of bearings in South Africa. Camerawork: Halima Frost. Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Sappi Verve, Birla collaborate on forest-to-garment traceability solution

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     3rd November 2020 Sappi Dissolving Pulp has partnered with viscose manufacturer Birla Cellulose to provide a forest-to-garment traceability solution for brand owners. Through this collaborative partnership, its dissolving pulp brand, Sappi Verve, continues to strengthen its sustainability credentials within the... 

Sale of Tongaat's starch business to Barloworld subsidiary completed

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd November 2020 Tongaat Hulett Limited (THL) successfully disposed of its Starch business to Barloworld’s KLL Group on October 31, after KLL paid an initial amount of over R4.9-billion as the purchase consideration. About R4.5-billion of this amount has been paid to THL lenders to reduce its South African debt. 

The Wine Farmer project launched to combat damaging effects of lockdown on industry

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd October 2020 The Southern African Agri Initiative (Saai) has launched a new wine marketing project, The Wine Farmer, which is an online wine shop aimed at making family farm wines available to consumers across South Africa at cellar door prices. The project is based at the Marianne Wine Estate, in Stellenbosch. 

The Wine Farmer project launched to combat damaging effects of lockdown on industry

Furniture Industry Masterplan to be finalised in coming months – DTIC

By: Simone Liedtke     22nd October 2020 The Furniture Industry Masterplan (FIMP) has been submitted to all relevant stakeholders and will be finalised and implemented in the coming months, Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) agroprocessing and forestry-based industries chief director Ncumisa Mcata-Mhlauli confirms. The... 

South Africa moves to soothe investor fears over land grabs

By: Bloomberg     21st October 2020 As South Africa revises its legal framework to make it easier to take property without paying for it, the nation’s land minister has given assurances that the contentious process won’t degenerate into a free-for-all. The ruling African National Congress decided in December 2017 to change the... 

South Africa moves to soothe investor fears over land grabs
Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza

Exxaro continues its role in ensuring food security, nutrition in communities

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th October 2020 JSE-listed miner Exxaro Resources’ executive head of sustainability Mongezi Vetti has reiterated the company’s commitment to transferring its rehabilitated land to communities toward establishing agro-economies. This follows after President Cyril Ramaphosa on October 5 spoke about government’s... 

Exxaro continues its role in ensuring food security, nutrition in communities
Exxaro Resources’ executive head of sustainability Mongezi Vetti

Economic recovery plan will protect jobs in vulnerable sectors - Ramaphosa 

By: Sane Dhlamini     19th October 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa has assured South Africans that the economic recovery plan he presented last week will protect jobs in vulnerable sectors that have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. The Presidential Employment Stimulus announced last week involves a public investment of... 

Economic recovery plan will protect jobs in vulnerable sectors - Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Omnia intends to sell Oro Agri business

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th October 2020 JSE-listed chemicals group Omnia Holdings has reached an agreement to sell its Oro Agri business to Rovensa – a European-based business that procures and distributes biocontrol, bionutrition and crop protection solutions. Omnia in June received a nonbinding offer for the business, which... 

Omnia intends to sell Oro Agri business
Omnia CEO Seelan Gobalsamy

Africa’s economic recovery lies in agriculture – minister 

By: African News Agency      15th October 2020 South African Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Thoko Didiza said on Thursday that the agricultural sector should be at the centre of the country’s and Africa’s economic recovery post-Covid-19. Didiza was speaking during a virtual address, commemorating rural women in... 

Africa’s economic recovery lies in agriculture – minister
Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Thoko Didiza

Violent crime a threat to community safety, food security – Ramaphosa 

By: Sashnee Moodley     12th October 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday called for greater coordination and better communication between the South African Police Service, business, farming organisations and communities, as well as integrated communications technologies to increase the success of the rural safety strategy.... 

Violent crime a threat to community safety, food security – Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Dewatering solutions suited for versatile applications

9th October 2020 Industrial equipment manufacturer Atlas Copco’s WEDA electric submersible pump series offers dewatering solutions for the construction, industrial, agriculture, emergency and maintenance sectors, featuring unrivalled performance, efficiency, reliability and flexibility. 

Dewatering solutions suited for versatile applications
DEWATERING SOLUTIONS WEDA D drainage pumps are designed to pump water containing abrasive solids of 4 mm to 12 mm diameter

Agricultural transformation a Presidential imperative, says Ramaphosa

By: Simone Liedtke     8th October 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa has highlighted access to agricultural land for subsistence farming and commercial production as a national priority, stating that the transformation of patterns of ownership “are fundamental in addressing not only food security, but also historical injustices”. In his... 

Environment department suspends eight officials

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     8th October 2020 The Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries has placed eight officials on precautionary suspension, effective October 8, following a forensic investigation into contracts alleged to have been irregularly awarded by the department's Waste Management Bureau (WMB). During the audit of the... 

Agri SA zones in on cohesion, inclusive change in industry

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th October 2020 Industry organisation Agri South Africa (Agri SA) will, for the next 12 months, prioritise ways to ensure new farmers are able to successfully enter the agricultural sector. Agri SA president Pierre Vercueil delivered the keynote address at the organisation’s yearly conference on October 8,... 

Agriculture presents myriad of opportunities for Africa, but challenges must be faced

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     8th October 2020 Agriculture is an integral part of African economies, but it is faced with many challenges and requires greater investment to further the continent’s growth. This was indicated by speakers at the Africa Brand Day Summit on October 7. 

Nedbank commits to planting 100 trees a year in Western Cape

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th October 2020 Nedbank Agriculture Western Cape has committed to planting 100 trees a year in the province in line with the objectives of the Boland Trees for Bees Pledge Fund. The fund was created by bee food diversity company The Bee Effect and Boland Cellar, which is a winemaking client of financial... 

Nedbank commits to planting 100 trees a year in Western Cape

Agri SA welcomes availing of State land for agricultural purposes

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd October 2020 South African agricultural industry association Agri SA has welcomed the announcement by Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza that over 500 000 ha of State land will be made available for agricultural purposes. Agri SA Centre of Excellence for Land chairperson... 

Govt announces new application process for available agricultural State land  

By: Simone Liedtke     1st October 2020 Members of the public who want to apply for available agricultural State land as part of the government contribution to the land reform programme, will need to follow a new process set out by Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza on October 1. The adjudication and... 

Govt announces new application process for available agricultural State land
Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza

Fair Cape brings in bees to pollinate canola on cattle farm

By: Marleny Arnoldi     1st October 2020 Commercial dairy brand Fair Cape Dairies has introduced 21-million African Honey Bees on canola crops at its Welgegund cattle farm in the Western Cape. The canola is grown as part of the farm’s crop rotation, which is known to help improve soil health, optimise nutrients in the soil and combat... 

Fair Cape brings in bees to pollinate canola on cattle farm
Canola at Fair Cape Dairies' Welgegund farm

Repurposing of mining land could help create farming jobs at scale

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th September 2020 While the viability of rehabilitiating mined land for agricultural purposes is still being debated and researched, there are success stories in the making, where mining companies are helping their host communities develop sustainable agricultural economies as mining activity winds down. These... 

Repurposing of mining land could help create farming jobs at scale

Tongaat's sale of its starch business to Barloworld to proceed

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     22nd September 2020 An independent expert Rothschild & Co has determined that a material adverse change (MAC) has not occurred in the proposed sale of Tongaat Hulett's starch business to Barloworld subsidiary KLL Group. Tongaat in February agreed to sell the starch business to the Barloworld subsidiary for... 

Agri SA value chain services company grows to fully fledged status

By: Marleny Arnoldi     18th September 2020 Agricultural organisation Agri SA’s new company Agri SA Enterprises has evolved into a fully fledged company with a focus on food value chain services. Agri SA in 2015 appointed an executive management member Omri van Zyl to incubate the company and solidify its service offering, which... 

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