With the current fiscal constraints, the rebuilding process will likely have to be led by private sector players as the state has the limited financial muscle to do so. And this is where the challenge begins.
The positive news of good agricultural production in South Africa is not limited to summer crops and horticulture but extends to winter crops – wheat, oats and canola. The driving force of optimism is favourable weather conditions.
Amid an abundant harvest, high agricultural commodity prices have been an ironic windfall for South African farmers, particularly the grain and oilseed growers. However, farmers should manage their portfolios well, as input costs have also been rising, namely: oil, herbicides, and fertilizer. Such higher costs have the potential to erode these price gains when farmers embark on the 2021/22 production campaign, commencing in October this year.
Food shortage is unlikely to be a reality in South Africa. This is why consumers should avoid panic buying as this creates a self-fulfilling prophecy and deepens anxiety. There are large food supplies following a good agricultural season. Also, the resilience of South Africa’s food supply chains will likely withstand the current shock.
I share some reflections on South Africa’s food supply chains amid the rioting and looting in KwaZulu-Natal province.
The sub-Saharan Africa region holds potential for expansion for South African agribusinesses, but the approach to doing business will have to adapt to country-specific practices at the start.