19 August 2016
Policy and Legislation
Agbiz meets with Danish Embassy 

Denmark is well-known for providing cutting-edge technology solutions in especially the Energy-Water-Food Nexus. The CEO of Agbiz, Dr John Purchase, this week met with senior Danish Embassy personnel on greater collaboration in the fields of water, energy and food technology, as well as on enhancing bilateral agricultural trade between the two countries. This initiative also follows on the Royal Danish visit to South Africa in November 2015, and an engagement that Agbiz then had with the Danish Minister of Agriculture and various Danish companies. Please peruse the Action Plan for South Africa of the Danish Embassy for further detail.
Agbiz participates in AGRA Panel on Drought Resilience in southern Africa
The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) this past week held a roundtable discussion on drought resilience in light of the unfolding drought-related developments in the Southern Africa region this past year especially. Dr John Purchase, CEO of Agbiz, was one of the panel discussants. Southern Africa is experiencing the worst drought witnessed in 35 years, with widespread crop failures exacerbating chronic malnutrition and likely the result of a very strong El Nino. The UN Food and Agricultural Organization has projected that almost 40 million people could face food insecurity by the peak of the coming lean season, between January and March 2017, when the effects of the drought are expected to peak. SADC has declared this drought a regional disaster and launched an appeal for about US$ 2.7 billion. The UN Food and Agricultural Organization warns that some 23 million people are in need of urgent support to be able to produce enough food to feed themselves and avoid being dependent on humanitarian assistance until mid-2018. Yet, some farmers, for instance in some parts of Malawi, who are planting more drought-tolerant crops-cassava, sweet potato and pigeon pea-and using better agricultural practices are not only surviving the drought, they are expecting to generate a good income on this year's harvest.  In the build up to the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) 2016 to be held in Nairobi next month (Agbiz will moderate a session on Value Chain Development) and  which will explore ways of securing gains made in the agricultural sector, AGRA and partners convened a breakfast roundtable on drought resilience on Thursday in Johannesburg, South Africa. The roundtable's discussions were primarily through the lens of resilience programming-how to anticipate crises like Southern Africa's current drought and prepare the people on the ground for the worst impacts-to ensure that it is embraced by most development initiatives. It highlighted best practices and explored opportunities for their replication across the continent. Click for more information»
Economic and agribusiness intelligence
Fuel price to ease in the coming month

Preliminary estimates from the Central Energy Fund suggest that petrol and diesel prices could decrease by 65 cents per litre (c/l) and 89 c/l, respectively, on 7 September 2016. This could bring the retail price of petrol (95 unleaded) to R11.70 per litre from the current level of R12.35 per litre. At the same time, diesel price (0.05%) could decrease to R10.07 per litre from the current levels of R10.96 per litre.  Wandile Sihlobo, Head of Agribusiness Intelligence at Agbiz, provides more information in the linked update»
Long-term agricultural growth and resilience strategies needed

The current drought has arguably been the most pronounced factor to have negatively affected the South African agricultural and agribusiness landscapes in recent history. The impact on crop and livestock production has been devastating and these industries are expected to continue to bear the brunt of the drought for years to come. Read full article written by Wandile Sihlobo»

Daily market viewpoint on agri-commodities 

South Africa is very much integrated into a dynamic global market, which is characterised by rapid changes.  To support decision makers in this environment, Agbiz members receive daily commentaries on agricultural commodity markets and macro-economic trends via e-mail.
The latest and historic commentaries are available on the Agbiz website www.agbiz.co.za
Weekly wrap of agri-commodities 

In addition to Agbiz's daily commentaries on agricultural commodity markets and macro-economic trends that members receive via e-mail, Agbiz will on Fridays consolidate all the weekly key events in the South African agricultural markets in a RSA Agricultural Commodities Weekly Wrap.   
The latest wrap is available on the Agbiz website www.agbiz.co.za
Agbiz Grain
Agbiz Grain Mini Symposium feedback

Some 120 delegates attended the Agbiz Grain Mini Symposium at the Centurion Country Club on Wednesday 10 August. This industry-wide event brought a wide range of role players together to discuss issues of importance in grain handling and storage. This year's theme was TRIPLE BOTTOM LINE: People, Profit, Planet. Some highlights of the day are linked»  

The presentations are available to download here»
Members' news
Old Mutual reveals plans for further African investment through Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority deal

Old Mutual Investment Group (OMIG) has announced its plans to expand its commercial real estate and agriculture footprints in Africa through a partnership with Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), Nigeria's sovereign wealth fund. The partnership will allow for the establishment of two separate investment vehicles, one focusing on agriculture investment and one on real estate investment in the region. Read more»
Source: Old Mutual media release

Find also linked OLD MUTUAL's FINANCIAL RESULTS for the six months ended 30 June 2016
New postgrad diploma for agronomists launched at SU

A new postgraduate diploma in Agronomy at Stellenbosch University (SU) will now be on offer for those wishing to expand their knowledge of crops and fertilizer management, from 2017 at the SU Department of Agronomy. It specifically offers in-depth training to people who did not acquire their post-matric agronomy background at a university, but at an agricultural college or university of technology. Read more»
Source: www.bizcommunity.com
Industry news
Toyota New Harvest of the Year Competition entries closing 26 Aug 2016
News around the web
South Africa ranked 30th in IP ranking

South Africa was ranked 30th in the 2016 International Property Rights Index (IPRI), moving down one place from the previous year.  The index, entirely dedicated to the measurement of intellectual and physical property rights, covers 128 countries which represent 98% of world gross domestic product and 93% of world population.  For more information, click the following links:
IPRI full report»
ENSO Update

La Niña is slightly favoured to develop during August - October 2016, with about a 55-60% chance of La Niña during the fall and winter 2016-17.  Read more»
Genetic modification of crops

In an open letter addressed to Greenpeace, the United Nations and the world's governments, a staggering 110 Nobel-winning scientists called upon the organisation to cease its campaign against genetically-modified organisms and biotechnology in agriculture. Read more»
Upcoming Events
24 August 2016 | Umhlanga, KwaZulu-Natal
This event will offer local business leaders and farmers the opportunity to learn about Israeli innovations in a wide variety of agriculture techniques and water management. Topics to be covered include irrigation, climate control, aquaculture, greenhouse technology, dairy farming and technology, undercover farming, poultry, advanced fertilizers, bio-pesticides and control, chemicals and much more. More information: Charmaine.Hirshowitz@israeltrade.gov.il
Jacaranda Agricultural Show
24 - 28 August 2016 | Tshwane Events Centre, Pretoria
This year the show will offer a feast of agriculture, wildlife farming, agricultural machinery, livestock, agricultural business development, technology, organic farming and much more.  Click for more information
Are property rights really under threat?
8 September 2016 | Standard Bank offices in Rosebank, Johannesburg
Reserve your seat by 2 September 2016
E-mail: StrategicIssuesManagement@standardbank.co.za
Food & Drink Technology Africa
14 - 15 September 2016 | Gallagher Estate, Midrand
Tropentag International Conference on Research in Food Security, Natural Resource Management and Rural Development
18 - 21 September 2016 | Vienna, Austria
AMT Agri-Outlook Conference
28 September 2016 | CSIR Convention Centre | Pretoria
Africa Fertilizer Agribusiness Conference
10 - 12 October 2016 | Dar es Salaam | Tanzania
Members of AGBIZ who register for the conference can use the code AGBIZ1 to save 15% on the final delegate rate. Read more»
Africa Agri Investment Indaba
28 - 30 November 2016 | Cape Town International Convention Center
Social Media
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