Business & Finance
Farmer's Weekly

Farmer's Weekly 15 May 2020

Farmer’s Weekly is an agricultural magazine based in South Africa, targeting the whole of Southern Africa. The magazine is committed to advancing the interests of the region’s farmers and its agricultural industry by serving as a mouthpiece for the industry and by keeping its readers informed of the latest developments in the agricultural sector.

South Africa
Caxton Magazines
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R 21,50

in this issue

2 min.
covid-19 lessons for agriculture

As the South African economy limps its way through the various lockdown levels, all of which are aimed at slowing the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection rate, we’re getting to learn more about the fragile links that enable the various sectors to trade and operate. Here are a few of those lessons we can already take from the lockdown’s impact on agriculture: • The importance of the informal market The lockdown and its restrictions on movement and trade has illuminated the critical role of the informal market in the local farming sector. Not only does the informal market represent a significant share of demand for fresh produce sold via the municipal fresh market system, informal trade plays an equally important role as a supplier to rural and lower-income customers. Restrictions banning informal traders…

6 min.
covid-19 and sa’s risky dependency on agri imports

“COVID-19 has caused turmoil and volatility since the start of 2020 and the measures implemented to contain it have sent shockwaves throughout the global economy. Investors’ appetite for risk has declined drastically, resulting in a major sell-off in financial markets, as well as a depreciation in many emerging market currencies. In South Africa, the situation has been exacerbated by consecutive downgrades to the sovereign credit rating: by Moody’s to sub-investment level for the first time, followed by Fitch to a level further into sub-investment grade. The rand has also depreciated significantly against the US dollar and other major currencies. At the same time, reduced economic activity, especially in mining and manufacturing, the grounding of commercial airliners, and the ongoing price war in major oil-producing countries, have caused the largest oil price…

1 min.
farmer’s diary

CANCELLED EVENTS 19 TO 20 MAY IFU Fruit Juice Conference, Spier Wine Farm, Stellenbosch. Visit ifu-fruitjuice.com/event/ JuiceConference2020. 24 JULY TO 2 AUGUST The Royal Show, Pietermaritzburg.Visit royalshow.co.za. POSTPONED EVENTS 11 TO 14 AUGUST (Previously 12 to 15 May) Nampo Harvest Day, Bothaville.Visit grainsa.co.za/pages/nampo. 11 TO 14 AUGUST (Previously 12 to 15 May) Farmer’s Weekly Tour to Nampo 2020, Bothaville.Visit farmersweekly.co.za/ tour-and-events. 20 AND 21 AUGUST (Previously 13 and 14 April) The Solar Power and Wind Renewable Energy Show, Cairo. Email Prima Castelino at prima.castelino@terrapinn.com. 20 AND 21 AUGUST (Previously 31 March to 1 April) The Water Show Africa, Sandton Convention Centre. Email Brian Shabangu at brian.shabangu@terrapinn.com. 10 AND 11 SEPTEMBER (Previously 14 and 15 May) Smart Livestock Farming Conference, Prague, Czech Republic. Email Olga Aulasko at olga.aulasko@bcfgroup.eu. 6 AND 7 NOVEMBER (Previously 26 and 27 March) Environmental Waste and Landfill Management, Emperors Palace, Johannesburg.Email admin@maphosam.co.za. POSTPONED (Previously 8 to 13 April) The Rand Show, Johannesburg Expo…

1 min.
important announcement!

Due to the global coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, South Africa’s National Coronavirus Command Council has announced a nationwide lockdown until 30 April, resulting in many events in the Farmer’s Diary being cancelled or postponed. At the time of going to print, Farmer’s Weekly could not confirm whether some of the listed events had been officially cancelled. However, most of the organisations hosting these events are due to make announcements in this regard shortly. Readers will be kept up to date. Farmer’s Weekly urges its readers to contact the relevant organising body before attending any course or event to confirm whether the event has been cancelled or postponed.…

3 min.
archives from our

7 OCTOBER 1981 Prospect’s pastures pay 39 YEARS AGO Keith Murray, a Merino farmer, improved his pastures by making the most of the local irrigation scheme. The 1 350ha farm Prospect, owned by Murray, at Fish River now carries 2 500 sheep and 70 head of cattle. By improving the pastures and making the most of the water from the Fish River Irrigation Scheme, he hopes to increase this during the next two years to 5 000 sheep and 100 head of cattle. Murray is a member of one of the 13 minor water boards that operate under the Fish River scheme, the water for which comes from the Grass Ridge Dam and in turn via the Orange Fish River Tunnel from the Verwoerd Dam. He and five other farmers draw their water from the…

4 min.
land reform: time to dust off the partnership plan

It looks as if the drastic lockdown measures against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have, to some extent, doused the hottest flames of the expropriation without compensation (EWC) discourse in South Africa. Perhaps Moody’s Investor Service’s long-expected downgrading to ‘junk’ status and Fitch Ratings’ further downgrading into sub-investment grade, together with the record lows in the value of the rand, have also played a role. ‘NINETY PERCENT OF LAND REFORM PROJECTS HAVE FAILED’ One gets the impression that a growing number of the ANC’s decision-making elite are beginning to better understand the disastrous consequences of EWC, halfheartedly driving the ANC’s resolution in this regard as if they are discreetly putting it up to be shot down either through parliamentary process or in the Constitutional Court. It would, in any case, not have been the…