Posted: July 5, 2021
Solid progress is being made with implementation of partnership agreements in the poultry and sugar industries. This was noted by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition Ebrahim Patel and Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Thoko Didiza during the Executive Oversight Committee (EOC) meetings held with industry captains, union leaders and government officials on Thursday.
The poultry industry reported an increase in production of chickens locally with about 290 000 additional chickens produced every week compared to a year ago. Soya and maize output have also increased significantly over the past year, with an additional 144,000 hectares of maize and 122,000 hectares of soya planted. The industry reported that more than 2 000 jobs were created across the value-chain. Improved country-of-origin labelling are due to come into operation from 1 September 2021.
The Cabinet Ministers focussed discussion on steps to strengthen entry by small-scale farmers and contract growers into the poultry value-chain. A number of projects involving black poultry producers were highlighted and the meeting agreed to step up efforts to support growth and transformation. A focus-session will be held on ways to unlock export opportunities for SA poultry products.
The sugar industry reported a largely flat local demand market in the first two months of the 2021/22 growing season, with a notable increase in soft-drink manufacturer uptake of local sugar and a decrease in demand for local sugar by wholesalers and retailers.
A small recovery in export sales is expected. This performance is off the significant growth of 15% in demand for local sugar during the prior season, and stakeholders committed to continued efforts to deliver further growth to achieve the target of 300,000 tonnes growth over the three years of Phase 1 of the masterplan.
The EOC discussed ways the sugar industry plans to implement its strategic ambition to strengthen the sector, particularly through new industrial uses of sugar and crop diversification to provide farmers with a better hedge when global sugar prices drop.
One notable possibility currently under investigation is the use of sugar to produce bio -jet-fuel. Efforts to promote the economic viability of smaller local producers were boosted with the decision by the SA Sugar Association to make R60 million a year available as price support to small-scale growers.
Sidwell Medupe-Departmental Spokesperson
Tel: (012) 394 1650
Mobile: 079 492 1774
Issued by: The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic)
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