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Agriculture News

Privatisation, Aids key Growth Summit hurdles

By: nkolola halwindi     6th June 2003 After close consultations among the social partners, investment, employment, skills and equity, and local action will be the key focus areas at the long-awaited Growth and Development Summit (GDS) to be held at the Gallagher Estates in Midrand, Gauteng. 

SA tractor sales down 11% in May

5th June 2003 South African tractor sales fell 11% in May compared to the same month a year ago because of lower crop prices, the South African Agricultural Machinery Association (Saama) said yesterday. 

SA maize prices suspend export plans

2nd June 2003 South African maize prices rose to a two-month high on a weakening randlast week, seemingly ignoring evidence of oversupply and forcing shippers to put plans to export surplus grain on hold. 

Changing profile of SA sugar industry

30th May 2003 The opening of the 2003/4 sugar season was celebrated in a cultural ceremony on April 10, on the Kwazulu-Natal north coast. 

Cane growers seek solutions to land claims and community empowerment

By: zeena isaacs     30th May 2003 South Africa has some 50 000 registered cane growers, comprising of large-scale commercial and small-scale farmers, which produce, on average, 23-million t of sugarcane per season. 

Sugar industry notches up record harvest

By: zeena isaacs     30th May 2003 The 2002/3 sugar season was the best ever, with a record-breaking 2,763-million t of sugar produced, breaking the previous record of 2,729-million t in the 2000/1 season. 

Mpumalanga mills produce half-a-million tons a year

30th May 2003 Two of South Africa’s 15 sugar mills, the Komati mill and the Malelane mill, produce about 495 000 t of raw sugar a year. 

Bark miller’s move into sugar proves to be a sweet deal

30th May 2003 Two new records were set in boilinghouse recovery, as well as overall recovery, by Union Cooperative at its sugar mill during the 2002/3 sugar season. 

2,7m tons of sugar milled a year

30th May 2003 The South African sugar industry generates, on average, a direct revenue exceeding R5-billion a year, of which R2-billion contributes to the country’s foreign exchange earnings. 

E Cape sugar beet project delayed

By: zeena isaacs     30th May 2003 “The proposed R900-million sugarbeet project has been put on ice for six to 12 months, following which a decision will be taken on whether the project will proceed or not,” Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) original manager Eastern Cape Stuart Bartlett tells Engineering News. 

Grant funding for South African floral protection

30th May 2003 The governing council of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) approved $250-million in grants for 35 new projects, including initiatives for protection of biodiversity in South Africa’s Cape floral region. 

Sugar company reports an abundant harvest

By: zeena isaacs     30th May 2003 About 2,3-million tons of refined sugar was produced by Illovo Sugar in the 2002/3 sugar season. 

New MD for sugar company

30th May 2003 Local company Tongaat-Hulett Sugar has appointed a new managing director. 

Sugar cane transport empowerment deal signed

30th May 2003 An R4-million empowerment-focused sugar cane transport venture has been established by Cargo Carriers for small and emergent sugar growers in Mpumalanga. 

Providing the sugar industry’s demanding valve needs

By: zeena isaacs     30th May 2003 A range of valves have been supplied by Heaton Valves Africa and its long-standing partner Hattersley, to two of the largest companies in the South African sugar industry, namely Tongaat-Hulett and Illovo Sugar. 

Freight division records solid growth in Africa

30th May 2003 Every sugar mill in Kwazulu-Natal is served with truckloads of cut cane by the depot network of the sugar division of Unitrans Freight. 

SA maize surplus set to pressure prices

28th May 2003 South Africa finished the 2002-03 marketing year with 2,7-million tons of unutilised maize, official statistics showed, prompting market players to say prices would have to fall. 

Job to retire from Sappi

28th May 2003 Global pulp and paper firm Sappi said yesterday that John Job, the chairperson of its South African operations, would retire at the end of 2003, but would remain group director for technology. 

KZN to unlock agricultural potential

26th May 2003 KwaZulu-Natal premier Lionel Mtshali said his government had a programme to unlock the province's agricultural potential. 

Court prevents approval of KZN energy project

By: Deborah Spicer     23rd May 2003 The Durban high court put a spanner in the works of Mondi’s proposed multi-fuel bed combuster by forbidding the MEC of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs from making a decision on the project until it becomes clear whether an environmental-impact assessment (EIA) exemption granted to the... 

R44m coater plant for Cape paper mill

By: Zonika Botha     23rd May 2003 South African paper and pulp giant Sappi is installing a R44-million coater plant at its Cape Kraft Mill to add value to the operation’s current product portfolio. 

EU’s GM labelling law may affect SA exporters

By: Deborah Spicer     16th May 2003 Namibia’s stance on meat which comes from animals which have been fed on genetically-modified (GM) grain may be out of date if the labelling requirements being discussed in the European Union (EU) become law. 

Wine trade body established

16th May 2003 A prominent labour law and relations consultant, Nicky Taylor, has been appointed the first chief executive officer of the Wine Industry Ethical Trade Association (Wieta), Wines of South Africa said in a statement today. 

Altech in R559m purchase of NamITech

By: Terence Creamer     16th May 2003 Technology group Altech – which has been sniffing out telecom, multimedia and information technology (IT) acquisition opportunities for well over a year – has announced a R559-million purchase of secure technologies and solutions company NamITech from packaging group Nampak, and it... 

Zambia seeks to produce 3mt maize in 2003/4

15th May 2003 Zambia said yesterday it hoped to boost white maize output to three-million tons in 2003/4 by opening up more land and providing new farmers with inputs. 

SA food likely to be impacted by maize losses

12th May 2003 Several South African food companies report results in the next two weeks and will shed some light on how much money was lost during a collapse in maize futures prices earlier this year. 

Wine sector anticipates a sparkling 2003 harvest

9th May 2003 THE 2003 harvest is expected to deliver one of the finest vintages in several years says a report from Wines of South Africa (Wosa).?A 7,5% increase in total yield is forecast, equalling an estimated total of 1 160 715 t with all the major wine-growing regions contributing to the increase. 

Modern pet-food factory opens

By: Joanne Delaurentis     9th May 2003 International dog- and cat-food manufacturer Royal Canin has opened a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in North Riding, north-west of Johannesburg. 

Sappi earnings up, but predicts lower Q3

9th May 2003 Shares in South African pulp and paper giant Sappi fell yesterday after it reported a modest improvement in second-quarter earnings, but warned third quarter results would be lower because of currency volatility. 

Mondi’s KZN project given enviro approval

8th May 2003 The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Agriculture and Environmental Affairs has given approval for the expansion and modernisation of Mondi’s Richard’s Bay mill, following the completion of an environmental-impact assessment study. 

GM cotton gives more for less for local farmers

7th May 2003 Genetically modified crops have advocates and detractors, but for South African cotton farmer TJ Buthelezi, the technology is a godsend. 

SA grain sector works to avert state intervention

7th May 2003 Players in South Africa's grain trade are working to head off government plans to stockpile maize to be used to stabilise prices of the grain. 

West African cotton growers expect bigger crops

5th May 2003 Key West African cotton producers expect bigger harvests for the 2003/04 season, after a crop hampered by patches of drought and disruptions from a war in Ivory Coast, a Reuters survey showed last week. 

Sappi likely to report flat earnings

30th April 2003 The world's largest producer of fine paper, Sappi, is expected to post flat second-quarter earnings next week, with the outlook for 2003 still uncertain for the weak industry, analysts said yesterday. 

SA maize price climbs, but still set to fall

29th April 2003 South Africa's maize market rose yesterday in a technical move, but was still braced for a fall, with a production surplus due and prices sitting well above export parity. 

EU to draft GMO crop mix guidelines within months

28th April 2003 European farmers should see their first official guidance in a few months on how they might grow genetically modified (GM) crops alongside traditional plants in the future, the EU's farm chief said. 

Cheaper SA maize attractive to buyers – WFP

28th April 2003 Falling prices have made South Africa's white maize increasingly attractive for buyers at the UN's food agency, offering the country a possible outlet for an almost certain surplus in the current year. 

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