07 September 2018

Earlier this week, Agbiz had the opportunity to make an oral submission to the Constitutional Review Committee (CRC) on its position in terms of the review of section 25 of the Constitution. The Agbiz delegation was led by the chairman, Francois Strydom, and further comprised the CEO of Agbiz, Dr John Purchase, Wandile Sihlobo and Theo Boshoff, who presented the submission to the CRC. Please  click here for the press release stating the position of Agbiz as summarised in the presentation.  Click here to listen to a radio interview with Moneyweb, where Dr John Puchase, elaborated on this issue.
Andries van Zyl of  RSG Geldsake spoke to Theo Boshoff, Agbiz head of Legal Intelligence, about issues related to land expropriation without compensation following the start of oral submissions to Parliament's Constitutional Review Committee earlier this week. Boshoff warned that if  government embarked on a plan to expropriate land without com- pensation, recklessly and in an arbi- trary manner, food prices could double Click here   to listen to the interview in Afrikaans.  
More opposing voices are emerging in the battle over whether South Africa should change its Constitution regarding the expropriation of land without compensation. One of those opposing voices is the Agricultural Business Chamber (or Agbiz), which has provided a very cogent argument against ELWC.  Click here to read Gareth van Zyl's article following Agbiz's presentation to the Constitutional Review Committee.
After contracting by 33.6% q/q in the first quarter of this year, the South African agricultural economy entered a technical recession in the second quarter following a further 29.2% q/q contraction. This far exceeded our expectations of a modest shrinkage of around 19% q/q. This data partially reflects the tail-end negative effects of the Western Cape drought, as well as the delayed harvest in the summer crop growing areas of South Africa, particularly the grain and oilseed production regions. This is on the back of a late start of the summer crop season due to unfavourable weather conditions earlier in the year.  Read the full article by Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz head of Agribusiness Research or watch  an interview with SABC News, where Wandile Sihlobo discussed this issue.
With Nedlac's Jobs Summit fast approaching, agriculture is once again back on the spotlight as one of the sectors that could potentially play a role in job creation. There is hope that at the end of the summit, there will be some actionable plans to reignite growth in the sector, albeit, shrouded in uncertainty and diverging views regarding land policy. Wandile Sihlobo provides more insight in the linked article.
"Free State Agriculture (FSA) wants to make it clear that as a result of discussions our members and the future of agriculture are our highest priority. It is also important that all role players in agriculture keep talking about the industry challenges, because this challenge is now greater than any individual or organisation," said Francois Wilken, President of FSA. Press release
Click here for the newly gazetted grazing capacity map for South Africa as required under the Conservation of Agricultural Resources Act, 43 of 1983 (CARA). CARA is far reaching and provides for control over the conservation and utilisation of the natural agricultural resources of South Africa by the maintenance of the production potential of land, by combating and prevention of erosion in order to promote the conservation of the soil. The objectives of this Act are to also to combat the weakening or destruction of the water sources, the protection of the vegetation and combating weeds and invader plants. Read more.
It is the time of year again when a vast number of fruit exporters are in Hong Kong to attend Asia Fruit Logistica. The dti (Department of Trade and Industry) is again funding a South African National Pavilion at the event.  After the event, a FruitSA delegation will travel from Hong Kong to Hanoi, Vietnam in an effort to assist with the market access applications for South African table grapes and citrus. Read more in the Fresh Produce Exporter Forum's newsletter.
In 2018 the Department of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) have designated the entire month of September as National Arbor Month. Previously Arbor Week (1-7 September), this period is designated for the recognition of trees and the benefits they provide.  Chris Wild, Executive Director of Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA) comments, "DAFF is one of FTFA's longest standing partners. We're excited that they have heeded our calls to designate the entire month of September to tree planting interventions." Read more about FTFA's tree planting activities this month. 
The African Livestock Trade Fair (ALFA) is built around a number of priority projects and during this year's expo, which will take place from 18 to 20 September at the Afridome in Parys, these priority projects will be showcased as part of several special events, competitions, workshops and awards. 
Press release.
Following the success of the previous Agbiz Information Sessions, two half-day information sessions for members and other role players are planned for 1 November in Pretoria and 15 November in Paarl. The sessions will focus on current challenges in the policy and legislation environment, as well as developments and opportunities in the agribusiness sector. Please save the dates; more information on registration and the programme will follow.
PMA Webinar
Join the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) webinar on 25 September for a deeper dive into blockchain. Could blockchain really be all that for our industry? Join PMA for a free webinar as we discuss how blockchain is being explored today by retailers, grower-shippers and tech companies. PMA's Ed Treacy will be joined by other industry thought leaders to explain blockchain, how it could address today's supply chain issues and how you can get started. Registration is free; advance registration is required.

AGRI 5 Commodities Workshop and Expo
20-21 September 2018  East London Show Grounds
Contact info: 011 056 6856

Africa Fertilizer Agribusiness Conference
24-26 September  | Cape Town
More information

56th Annual Conference of the Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA)
25-27 September 2018 | Lord Charles Hotel | Somerset West
Media release

Urban Agri Africa 2018 Summit
25-26 September 2018 | Sunnyside Park Hotel | Parktown
More information

2018 IRMSA Annual Conference
3-4 October 2018  | Gallagher Convention Centre | Midrand
Keynote speaker: Pravin Gordhan, Minister of Public Enterprises

Second African Congress on Conservation Agriculture
9-12 October 2018 | Johannesburg

Science Forum 2018
Theme: Win more, lose less: Capturing synergies between SDGs through agricultural research
10-12 October 2018 | Stellenbosch

Second International Conference for Food Safety and Security
St George's Hotel, Pretoria
15-17 October 2018 | St George Hotel | Pretoria

First Bi-annual International Soy for Human Health Conference 2019
11-13 March 2019 | St George Hotel | Pretoria
Why join Agbiz?
  • Agbiz is the only organisation that serves the broader and common over-arching business interests of agribusinesses in South Africa.
  • Agbiz addresses the legislative and policy environment on the many fronts that it impacts on the agribusiness environment.
  • Agbiz facilitates considerable top-level networking opportunities so that South African agribusinesses can play an active and creative role within the local and international organised business environment.
  • Agbiz research provides sector-specific information for informed decision-making.
  • Agbiz newsletter publishes members' press releases and member product announcements.
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