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State must get serious this time about agriculture plan

Screen Shot 2021-10-12 at 11.13.30 AM

Source: Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz e-newsletter/Business Day, 8 October 2021, photo credit: Sustainable Food Trust

I am in the Western Cape last week meeting various agribusinesses. We last had such in-person meetings before the pandemic.

The conversations regarding the broad performance of the sector are encouraging, though the Western Cape didn’t experience as robust an agricultural performance as many of the other provinces because of the temporary bans on alcohol sales, which hit two of the province’s core agriculture industries — grapes for wine and barley for beer production — particularly hard.

The focus is on the rebuilding phase, and at national level the agriculture growth strategy revolves around the Agriculture and Agro-processing Master Plan, which has been in the works for more than a year.
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