Wandike Sihlobo, chief economist, Agbiz
The underperformance of South Africa’s agricultural sector in 2019 was largely caused by two factors; drought and biosecurity (specifically foot-and-mouth disease and African swine fever). This was through two channels, namely 1) lower agricultural output because of drought, and also 2) subdued trade activity because of a ban on the exports of animal products following the outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease.
Will 2020 be any different? It is hard to tell at this point as the drought and foot-and-mouth disease remain a challenge in the country. Exhibit 1 highlights the areas of South Africa that are currently experiencing drought, and also rainfall expectations over the next two months.
The South African Pork Producers’ Organisation (SAPPO) coordinates industry interventions and collaboratively manages risks in the value chain to enable the sustainability and profitability of pork producers in South Africa.