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Agriculture News

Namibian economy contracts for fourth consecutive quarter

By: , Bloomberg     19th September 2019 Namibia’s economy contracted for the fourth consecutive quarter in the three months through June, dragged down by mining and agriculture. Gross domestic product shrank by 2.6% from a year earlier, compared with a revised 2.9% decrease in the first quarter, Statistician General Alex Shimuafeni... 

Poultry producers positive about engagement with Patel

By: Simone Liedtke     19th September 2019 Following a recent meeting with the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition and other stakeholders, the South African Poultry Association on Wednesday said it was feeling “positive” about the progress made in addressing the crisis threatening the industry. Trade and Industry Minister... 

Poultry producers positive about engagement with Patel

From farm to cup, big coffee taps blockchain to lure Millennials

By: , Bloomberg     18th September 2019 Sustainability-minded millennials are increasingly demanding to know where their morning cup of joe comes from, and some of the world’s top coffee companies are turning to technology for help. Roasters including JM Smucker and Jacob Douwe Egberts are joining a blockchain initiative by Farmer... 

From farm to cup, big coffee taps blockchain to lure Millennials

Tongaat Hulett announces its project with Zimbabwe is on track

By: African News Agency      18th September 2019 KwaZulu-Natal based agroprocessing business Tongaat Hulett on Tuesday announced that Project Kilimanjaro, which will result in the development of a significant portion of land to sugarcane, is on track.  The project, which is supported by the government of Zimbabwe and a consortium of banks led... 

Nigeria’s biggest tomato facility idle again as farmers dump crop

By: , Bloomberg     16th September 2019 Nigeria’s biggest tomato plant is counting on the government’s restriction of food imports to sustain operations after going idle again six months after it resumed operations from an almost three-year shut down. When Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man, decided to set up the plant, it was with... 

Nigeria’s biggest tomato facility idle again as farmers dump crop

Policy uncertainty continues to subdue agri-sector confidence

By: Marleny Arnoldi     16th September 2019 The Agbiz/Industrial Development Corporation Agribusiness Confidence Index marginally improved to 46 points during the third quarter of the year, compared with 44 points in the second quarter. However, with the level remaining below the neutral 50-point mark, Agbiz says agribusinesses are still... 

Policy uncertainty continues to subdue agri-sector confidence
Photo by Creamer Media's Simone Liedtke
Agbiz chief economist Wandile Sihlobo

Pan-African conference seeks to bolster OHS on the continent

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     13th September 2019 OSHAfrica’s inaugural Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Conference – triennial conferences that will be held across the African continent – is a Pan-African, collaborative endeavour that is aimed at bringing together stakeholders from South Africa, the rest of Africa and beyond to discuss the... 

Pan-African conference seeks to bolster OHS on the continent
Photo by Creamer Media's Tasneem Bulbulia
Thuthula Balfour

Land Bank posts healthy results for agriculture sector, despite difficult times

By: Schalk Burger     13th September 2019 State-owned development finance institution the Land and Agricultural Development Bank of South Africa (Land Bank) grew its transformational loans to R7.9-billion and maintained a strong balance sheet in the 2018/19 financial year, despite challenging conditions in the agricultural sector, Land... 

Land Bank posts healthy results during difficult times in agriculture sector 

By: Schalk Burger     2nd September 2019 State-owned development finance institution (DFI), the Land and Agricultural Development Bank of South Africa (Land Bank), grew its transformational loans to R7.9-billion in the 2018/19 financial year. Transformational loans as a percentage of the total loan book increased from 12% in 2017/18 to... 

Grindrod sells NWK stake for R204m

By: Marleny Arnoldi     2nd September 2019 JSE-listed freight and logistics company Grindrod on Monday signed an agreement to sell its 20.3% stake in grain services provider NWK Limited to NWK Holdings Limited for R204-million. The transaction is expected to be finalised by the end of this month. 

Tereos Commodities to shut sugar operations in Kenya, South Africa

By: Reuters     30th August 2019 French sugar maker Tereos said on Thursday Tereos Commodities would close its offices and halt sugar trading in Kenya and South Africa by the end of March 2020 as part of a global review of its strategy. Tereos, which has reported a sharp drop in profits in the last fiscal year due mainly to a... 

SA agriculture needs the right decisions, actions and plans to grow

By: Rebecca Campbell     30th August 2019 The future of the South African agricultural sector is dependent on the country and industry making the right policy and investment choices. So cautioned Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy (BFAP) Board of Directors member Professor Ferdi Meyer, speaking recently at the launch of the “BFAP... 

Post-harvest tech expands to fire sector

By: Cameron Mackay     30th August 2019 While on-site industrial gas generation solutions provider Gas at Site has traditionally focused on the post-harvest sector using technology – referred to as controlled atmosphere – that controls the concentration of atmospheric gases to store fruit at low oxygen levels, this technology can also... 

Post-harvest tech  expands to fire sector
FIRE SUPPRESSION ACCEPTANCE The challenge lies in presenting this solution, which cannot be seen, compared to solutions which can be physically seen such as foam or sprinkler systems

Namibia’s central bank forecasts deeper economic contraction in 2019

By: Reuters     28th August 2019 The Bank of Namibia said on Tuesday it expected the domestic economy to fall into a deeper contraction of 1.7% during 2019, down from its initial estimate of 0.3% positive growth in April. The central bank said the economy was expected to recover to positive growth of 0.8% and 1.2% in 2020 and... 

AGH appoints new Agri Services CEO

By: Simone Liedtke     27th August 2019 Investment holdings company Afgri Group Holdings (AGH) CEO Chris Venter on Tuesday announced the appointment of Jacob de Villiers as the new CEO of Afgri Agri Services, following the retirement of the division’s former CEO, Tinus Prinsloo, at the end of July. De Villiers, most recently acted in a... 

Trade Deputy Minister hears emerging farmers' concerns

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th August 2019 The red meat value chain had the potential to unlock employment and entrepreneurial opportunities, Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Nomalungelo Gina told farmers at the Uthukela Beef Value Chain workshop, in Estcourt, KwaZulu-Natal, earlier this week. The workshop was held to assist emerging... 

Trade Deputy Minister hears emerging farmers' concerns

Zambia introduces maize price cap to keep it affordable

By: Reuters     26th August 2019 Zambia has introduced a cap on the price of maize to keep the staple food affordable, sparking protest from commercial farmers who accused the government of bringing back price controls. Agriculture Minister Michael Katambo said on Sunday that millers, stockfeed manufacturers, chain stores and... 

Task team assembled to tackle swine flu

By: News24Wire      26th August 2019 The Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, along with MECs of three affected provinces, has set up a task team to urgently address the spread of African swine flu among pig stocks, the ministry said on Saturday. Since April, there have been outbreaks of swine flu in North... 

Bread industry campaign to increase S Africa’s fibre consumption

By: Tracy Hancock     23rd August 2019 Nonprofit industry association the South African Chamber of Baking is working on a joint campaign with the Consumer Goods Council of South Africa and the Department of Health (DoH) to encourage South Africans to consume more fibre as part of a healthy eating plan. South African Chamber of Baking... 

Bread industry campaign to increase S Africa’s  fibre consumption
WHITE OR BROWN? The chamber is working on a campaign to increase local consumption of brown and whole-wheat bread by South African consumers

Interest growing in cultivation of plant-based protein alternatives

By: Tracy Hancock     23rd August 2019 Plant-based food is the new hi-tech agritech, with research and development investment in plant-based protein alternatives at a high, while infotech and biotech are leading the future advancements of food production and farming, says Tzaneen-based multi-accredited tree nursery Red Sun Hortitech... 

Interest growing in cultivation of plant-based protein alternatives
FARM SMARTER, NOT BIGGER South Africa needs agriculture centres of excellence through which business, government and tertiary institutions collaborate on world-leading innovations in food production

Artisanal cheesemaking tough sector, says award winning cheesemaker

By: Tracy Hancock     23rd August 2019 There is a constant flow of new entrants in the local artisanal cheesemaking sector, but it is a tough world that requires much dedication, fortitude and courage, says Gauteng-based Belnori Boutique Cheesery co-owner Rina Belcher. “Owing to this, growth is really slow as many new cheesemakers... 

Artisanal cheesemaking tough sector, says award winning cheesemaker
BIG CHEESE Belnori Boutique Cheesery’s St Francis of Ashisi cheese was named South Africa’s 2019 Dairy Product of the Year in March

Brexit concerning, but wine demand growing

By: Tracy Hancock     23rd August 2019 The consequences of Brexit remain a significant concern for South Africa’s wine producers, nonprofit industry organisation Wines of South Africa (WoSA) communications manager Maryna Calow tells Engineering News. This is owing to the uncertainty regarding future exports to the UK, which remains... 

Brexit concerning, but wine demand growing
PRICING PARITY South Africa’s wine industry needs to continue increasing the value of its wines to ensure the industry’s sustainability

JIT is key to optimising the FMCG supply chain

23rd August 2019 The ability to manufacture just enough stock to cover orders and deliver ‘just enough’ product to every retailer is the optimal supply chain scenario in the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) industry, says supply chain software company MACMobile commercial director Andrew Dawson. 

JIT is key to optimising the FMCG supply chain
ANDREW DAWSON In an industry where all parties are fighting for every cent in the value chain, the ability to streamline and optimise processes is a huge competitive advantage

Agricultural initiative builds bridges between stakeholders

By: Marleny Arnoldi     22nd August 2019 A transformative and replicable broad-based initiative within the agricultural sector has come on-stream through the conclusion of a transaction between citrus and grape farmer Schoonbee Landgoed and black-owned company Thebe Investment Corporation. The initiative, called Project Change, has... 

Agricultural initiative builds bridges between stakeholders

South African blueberry industry sets its sights on key export markets

By: Simone Liedtke     22nd August 2019 The South African Berry Producers Association (Sabpa) expects South Africa’s blueberry production to reach a record high of 17 000 t this year, up from the 11 300 t produced in 2018. It expects production to increase further to 50 000 t/y by 2023 and says this will help to grow employment in the... 

South Africa’s wool industry has $325m question for China

By: , Bloomberg     21st August 2019 South Africa’s wool industry is on tenterhooks as exporters seek clarity on a Chinese ban on imports of the fiber following an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease earlier this year in the world’s second-biggest producer. At issue is whether China has fully reversed rules governing shipments of... 

Land Bank funding model needs work

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     20th August 2019 While the Land Bank’s mandate is good in its current form, its funding model needs work if it is to provide adequate funding for black business in the agricultural sector, Land Bank strategy and communications executive manager Sydney Soundy said during a Black Business Council (BBC) roundtable... 

KAP lifts full-year revenue, but profit tracks lower

By: Schalk Burger     20th August 2019 Diversified industrial company KAP Industrial Holdings has grown its revenue for the financial year ended June 30 by 12% year-on-year to R25.6-billion, but operating profit decreased by 13% to R2.5-billion. In a SENS announcement that contained extracted financial information from the audited... 

Zoo farm conserves wildlife, breeds endangered species

By: Simone Liedtke     16th August 2019 The Johannesburg Zoo has set up 694 ha of arable land amid a World Heritage Site in the Free State to breed and conserve rare species of animals and pilot extensive crop farming systems. Named the Rietkuil Wildlife Conservation Farm, which was acquired in 2006 and is headed by Johannesburg City... 

Specialist moves to diversify into agriculture, food & bev

By: Nadine James     16th August 2019 Gauteng-based material transfer specialist Weba Chute Systems is diversifying its client base, officially venturing into the agricultural, food and beverage and paper and pulp industries, says Weba MD Mark Baller. He explains that while Weba had often received and acted on inquiries from... 

Specialist moves to diversify  into agriculture, food & bev
SMOOTH TRANSITION Weba Chute Systems is officially diversifying its client base, having infrequently participated in non-mining projects over the years

Legislation, waste diverting can drive biogas growth

By: Cameron Mackay     16th August 2019 Changing legislation and the continued strain on landfill space in South Africa is causing a significant drive in the country to divert waste, particularly organic waste, away from landfill sites. Alternative waste solutions provider GCX Zero Waste manager Hein Fourie says this can help to... 

Legislation, waste diverting can drive biogas growth
COMPLEX MARKETS Growth of the biofuels sector is slow, as the sector is slowly learning how to accommodate and adapt to South African market conditions

Broiler industry’s slow growth not a consequence of unfair foreign competition – economist

By: Nadine James     15th August 2019 A report commissioned by the European Union-South Africa Strategic Economic Partnership, shows that contrary to the local broiler industry’s assertions, the industry's slow growth was not caused by unfair offshore competition, says lead consultant and independent economist Mike de Klerk. De Klerk... 

Tetra Pak’s innovation engendering sustainability, efficiency in packaging industry

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     15th August 2019 With sustainability at the core of its business, processing and packaging solutions company Tetra Pak says it is implementing a number of technological innovations and solutions that engender the lowest carbon footprint and highest efficiency. Tetra Pak Southern African MD Stefan Fageräng,... 

Tetra Pak’s innovation engendering sustainability, efficiency in packaging industry
Stefan Fageräng

South African agriculture, with certain exceptions, faces slow growth in coming years 

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th August 2019 The Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy (BFAP), a nonprofit organisation, has warned that it expects the gross value of South Africa's agricultural production this year to be similar, in real terms, to that of 2015. It stated this in its 'BFAP Baseline Agricultural Outlook 2019-2028' report,... 

South African agriculture, with certain exceptions, faces slow growth in coming years

Right choices essential for the future of South African agriculture

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th August 2019 The future of the South African agricultural sector is dependent on the country and industry making the right policy and investment choices. So cautioned Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy (BFAP) Board of Directors member Professor Ferdi Meyer on Wednesday. He was speaking at the launch of... 

Astral CEO to take leave of office

By: Simone Liedtke     14th August 2019 Poultry producer Astral Foods CEO Chris Schutte will be taking leave of office to recuperate from a cardiovascular surgery later this month. The date of his return to office will be announced at a later stage. 

Foskor board to finalise sustainability plan within six months  

By: Terence Creamer     13th August 2019 Foskor chairperson Bobby Godsell reported on Tuesday that the company’s board was conducting a comprehensive review of the group’s underperforming operations with the aim of developing a sustainability plan within the coming six months. Foskor, which mines phosphate rock and magnetite in Limpopo... 

Foskor board to finalise sustainability plan within six months
Foskor chairperson Bobby Godsell and IDC CEO TP Nchocho on prospects for turning around the company. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 13.7.2019
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