31 March 2016
Agbiz Congress Update
The Agbiz Congress 2016, themed "Fit for the Future" is taking place on 1 - 2 June 2016 in Somerset West, Cape Town.

Keynote speaker:  Governor of the South African Reserve Bank 
We are delighted to announce that Mr Lesetja Kganyago, Governor of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) will be the keynote speaker at the Agbiz Congress on Wednesday, 1 June 2016.  He will be addressing challenges faced by South Africa in terms of real economic issues, such as GDP growth rates, policy impact on the investment environment and the depreciation of the Rand and food inflation.

Thank you to our sponsors: Standard Bank, Absa AgriBusiness, John Deere Financial, Afgri, Voermol, VKB, Obaro, NWK, Senwes, KLK, FNB, Signa, Engen, Syngenta, Kaap Agri, Monsanto, SSK, Overberg Agri, TWK, Talent Africa, Suidwes, Santam Agriculture, Sanlam, Nedbank, BKB, GWK, Mutual & Federal Agri, Bathopele Agri Development Institute, Pamodzi Unique Engineering.
Policy and Legislation
Business meets with Minister Gordhan

Business Unity South Africa (BUSA), including Agbiz as BUSA  member, yesterday met with Minister Pravin Gordhan in a frank and straight-talking engagement on the economy and the various political, social and environmental influences impacting negatively on South Africa's GDP growth rate. Media release»
Agbiz participates in Africa Energy Indaba

Agbiz, as represented by Dr John Purchase, participated as a panellist on the Energy-Water-Food Nexus Session of the Africa Energy Indaba, held at the Sandton Convention Centre in Sandton, Johannesburg, on 16 and 17 February 2016. Please find attached the official Africa Energy Indaba Conference Proceedings detailing the outcomes of the event dialogue for your perusal.
DRDLR presents to Parliament on Agri-Parks

This past week the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform (DRDLR) presented on agri-parks to the Portfolio Committee on Rural Development and Land Reform in Parliament.

DRDLR, working together with the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries; the Economic Development Department; the Department of Science and Technology; Department of Trade and Industry, the Department of Cooperative Governance, the Department of Small Business Development, the Department of Water Affairs and Sanitation, the Department of Environmental Affairs, their respective agencies and the private sector have embarked on rolling-out agri-parks to all 44 districts in South Africa, including the Thaba Nchu area in the Mangaung Metro. The project will kick start the Rural Economic Transformation for identified rural regions, creating an estimated 89 340 jobs in production, farmer support, and processing by 2019. Please click on agri-parks to peruse full submission.
Agribusiness Intelligence
Agbiz/IDC Agribusiness Confidence Index 2015 Q4 

The Agbiz/IDC Agribusiness Confidence Index for the 4th Quarter of 2015 remained virtually unchanged from the relatively low level of the 3rd Quarter. However, on a Year-on-Year basis, the Confidence Index has dropped significantly (25%) from the 4th Quarter of 2014 and the Index is well below the neutral 50.0 points line, indicating that overall confidence in the agribusiness environment is currently low to very low.  More information»
Industry News
Revised area planted estimate and third production forecast for summer crops for 2016

As a result of the continued drought in the western and central parts of the
Free State, as well as in the western and northern parts of the North West province, the size of the expected commercial maize crop has been set at 7,065 million tons, which is 2,63% tons less than the previous forecast.  Read media release»

Grain & Oilseeds Supply & Demand Estimates Report 

NAMC Food Basket Price Monthly

The NAMC monitors food prices at retail level and releases regular authoritative reports. The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries established the Food Price Monitoring Committee (FPMC) at the NAMC to track and report on food price trends in South Africa and also to provide explanations on the
observed trends and advise the department on any possible action that could be taken when national and household food security is threatened.  Read the monthly report»
Maize imports running smoothly thanks to grain handlers

By March this year more than a million tons of South American yellow maize had already been imported through South African harbours, and white maize imports from the USA and Mexico will follow soon. In addition, the grain traders, harbour authorities, Transnet and transport companies are still handling the normal imports of commodities like wheat, grain sorghum, soybeans, sunflower seeds and oilcake for the stock feed industry.  "The gigantic task is being carried out excellently and the grain-handling chain deserves to be complimented on this," said Annatjie Loio, president of the Grain Handling Organisation (GOSA) at their 33rd annual symposium recently held in Langebaan in the Western Cape.   Read media release»
Members' News
Foundation for a turnaround in South Africa 

Old Mutual Emerging Markets CEO, Ralph Mupita, played an active role in the recent engagement between SA's leading CEOs and government, aimed at drafting the eight-point plant to prevent a damaging sovereign ratings downgrade.  Read more»

The linked infographic shows how Old Mutual added value to SA in 2015 through growing the economy, investing in infrastructure and developing communities.
Sundays River Citrus Company Transformation Times

Find linked Sundays River Citrus Company's (SRCC) Transformation Times which keeps interested parties updated on empowerment projects and activities within the SRCC organisation.
Monsanto one of the 50 Best Workplaces for Flexibility

Great Place to Work® Institute and Fortune® magazine have recognised Monsanto as one of the 50 Best Workplaces for Flexibility, ranking the company No. 11.  Great Place to Work selected companies for this list based on responses to the Trust Index, Great Place to Work's employee assessment survey, as well as an analysis of respondents' anonymous comments. Survey questions assessed co-workers' feelings on work-life balance, in addition to factors like communication, fairness and leadership that affect employees' ability to accommodate their personal lives without compromising their careers.  Read more»
Upcoming Events
FERTASA Congress 2016
18 - 19 April 2016 | 
Birchwood Hotel, Boksburg
For more information, contact Hermien Wouda 012 349 1450.
Crop Estimates Liaison Committee (CELC) Seminar
The Crop Estimates Liaison Committee is hosting a seminar to introduce the Crop Estimates Consortium and showcase the cutting-edge Earth Observation technologies used in the SA crop estimate.
21 April 2016 | 
Centurion Country Club, Centurion
17th Annual Road Transport Legislation Workshop
24 May | Spier, Stellenbosch
26 May | Protea Hotel Edward, Durban
7 June | CSIR, Pretoria
Agbiz Congress 2016
1 - 2 June 2016 | Somerset West, Cape Town
IFAMA 26th Annual World Conference
19 - 23 June 2016 | Denmark
The IFAMA world conference will focus on three major issues crucial to the
food challenge:
People: Flow of Talent in the Food and Agribusiness Sector
Climate: Climate-­Smart Food and Agribusiness Systems
Big data: Better Analytics and Deeper Insight Management
Media release
Farmbiz Agribusiness Africa Conference 
27 - 28 July 2016 | Gallagher Convention Centre, Midrand
Enquiries: Marianna du Plessis,  africa@farmlinkafrica.co.za or 082 337 6127
Tropentag International Conference on Research in Food Security, Natural Resource Management and Rural Development
18 - 21 September 2016 | Vienna, Austria
Social Media
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Agricultural Business Chamber | P.O.Box 76297 | Lynnwood Ridge | Pretoria | 0040 | South Africa