23 February 2018

With government debt and budget deficits at concerning levels, weak economic growth levels prevailing, populist promises around "Fees must Fall" demands and rating agencies hovering over  a spluttering economy, Minister Malusi Gigaba delivered the 2018 Budget Vote Speech on Wednesday this week. "Endless analysis is possible, but suffice to say that that the Minister and National Treasury have come up with a budget that under the trying circumstances and conditions can be deemed to be tough but acceptable," said Agbiz CEO, Dr John Purchase. He said Agbiz is however of the opinion that greater investment needs to be made into the economic sector of the country, including agriculture/agribusiness, to stimulate growth. Only then will jobs be created and transformation be realized. Prof Raymond Parsons from North West University Business School also emphasizes this point in his excellent 2018 Budget analysis, while VinPro released a statement on what the impact of the increased excise duty will be on the wine industry. BUSA also released a BUSA press statement on the 2018 Budget Vote that deserves attention. Fact remains that all, rich and poor, will be harder hit and paying the price for poor economic growth during the Zuma administration years.

Someone, somewhere, pays the price for expropriation without compensation - often it is the entire country.  

The ANC made a landmark decision in the December 2017 conference, where it indicated that it would start the process towards a constitutional amendment of Section 25 to make possible land redistribution without compensation.  This is a marked shift in policy, and comes at a time when land reform (through the state and the market) has made more progress than experts and policy makers care to admit.

Prof Johann Kirsten and Wandile Sihlobo shares their opinion in a column published in the Business Day, today.  Download and read the opinion piece here»
*Theo Boshoff, Wandile Sihlobo and Sifiso Ntombela (Researchers at Agbiz)

Over the past couple of days, we've  heard what political leaders think about the 'expropriation without compensation' policy approach that the African National Congress (ANC) announced at its 54 th National Conference in December 2017.   However, it is still unclear exactly what such a policy approach would look like and what the implications thereof will be as the ANC hasn't released any detailed documents on the subject. One encouraging thing that ANC leaders have been consistent in emphasizing that 'expropriation without compensation' will only happen in a manner that is sustainable and does not harm the agricultural sector or the economy.
Read more in the  linked blog post»

Food and non-alcoholic beverages inflation have been on a downward trend since mid-2017, following a robust output from the agricultural sector. In January 2018, food inflation further decelerated to 4.5% y/y, which is the lowest levels in more than two years. With that said, the food basket remains mixed. The livestock products (meat, milk, eggs and cheese) are slightly elevated, whereas the rest is on a slowing path. We expect this trend to persist in the comings months cushioned by large grain stock from the previous season, and expectations of a good harvest in the summer crop growing areas. 
Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz economist provides more information in the linked update»

Click here to read the daily market view on commodities and the weekly wrap.  

The South African Cheese Festival is a water-wise festival. Fans of this annual institution, held this year over the Freedom Day long weekend from Friday, 27 April to Sunday, 29 April 2018 at Sandringham, outside Stellenbosch, are invited to support the 17 th  festival SA Cheese Festival in a water-wise manner.   Johan Ehlers, Chief Executive Officer of Agri-Expo, says the agricultural society, along with its partners, will present the 2018 SA Cheese Festival without any impact on the already depleted water sources in the Western Cape.      Read more»
2018 Agbiz Congress Media Partners

Agbiz is proud to have the following media partners: Landbouweekblad, Farmer's Weekly, FarmBiz and Agri-orbit.   Please take a moment to learn more about them by clicking here»

If you have any questions or are interested in becoming a media partner, please contact Jennifer Roets at  jennifer@agbiz.co.za . Our media partner packages can put you directly in touch with potential advertisers and subscribers, as well as provide you with fantastic brand exposure.

Agbiz Congress: 7-8 June 2018
Welcome Function: 6 June 2018
Gala Dinner: 7 June 2018
Agbiz AGM: 8 June 2018

The congress theme is: Uncertainty Creates Opportunity. We encourage you to visit the congress website regularly for updates. To obtain more information, please  click here»

SPONSORS:   All our sponsors are important to the success of this prestigious event.  Please  click here  to see who our confirmed congress sponsors are.
DELEGATE REGISTRATION:   Click here to register»
Enquiries:   Natasha Swanepoel
+27 12 807 6686 or  natasha@agbiz.co.za

Enquiries:  Jennifer Roets
+27 12 807 6686 or  jennifer@agbiz.co.za
Agbiz Information Session
1 March 2018 | Pretoria - Closing date for registration is 23 February 2018
AgriSETA / QCTO Training Workshop for the Grain Industry
6  March 2018 |  Auditorium, Grain Building, Pretoria
RSVP by 26 February 2018 -   annelien@agbizgrain.co.za

Skills Development Summit
6-7 March 2018 | Gallagher Convention Centre | Midrand

Undercover Farming Expo
7-8 March 2018 | CSIR | Pretoria
Enquiries:  suzanne@pop.co.za

Glenconnor Agricultural Association Agri Info Day
14 March 2018 | Mayogi Bomas, R75 onroute to Kirkwood
Aimed at promoting information-sharing among farming disciplines in the Eastern Cape region, The Co-op is proud to announce its involvement as main sponsor of this event. The programme lineup of this Agricultural Information Day is extraordinary with inspiring speakers that are synonymous with the global agricultural industry.

Bakery Legislation - Regulatory workshop by SA Chamber of Baking
15 March 2018 | Sorex Estate | Centurion

Landbouweekblad konferensie
Herlewingslandbou is boere se kostedoeltreffende wapen teen stygende insetkoste en klimaatsverandering
19-20 March 2017 | Reitz

GOSA Symposium 2018
22-23 March 2018 | Mossel Bay
More information

International Sorghum Conference 
9-12 April 2018 | Cape Town
More information

MATON 2018
4-5 April 2018 | Pretoria
More information

FERTASA Annual Congress
19 April 2018
Premier Hotel OR Tambo | Johannesburg
15- 18 May 2017 | NAMPO Park | Bothaville 
More information

21 to 25 May 2018
The Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), The World Academy of Sciences Regional Office for sub-Saharan Africa (TWAS-ROSSA) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) are seeking candidates to participate in the inaugural regional training workshop on science diplomacy to be held in South Africa.  More information

World Potato Congress
27-31 May 2018 | Peru | South America

FW Agribusiness Africa Conference
18-19 July 2018 | Emperors Palace
Enquiries: Marianna du Plessis, e-mail  africa@caxton.co.za
Agbiz membership
Being a member of Agbiz provides various benefits and opportunities

- 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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