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Agriculture News

Macadamia producer to invest millions in new processing facility

By: Anine Kilian     24th July 2017 Macadamia nut processing company Green Farms Nut Company (GFNC) has started construction to expand its macadamia nut processing facility, in White River, Mpumalanga, with Phase 1 set for completion in 2018. According to the Southern African Macadamia Growers Association (Samac), new macadamia... 

With drought threatening food security, farmers turn to drip irrigation 

By: Anine Kilian     21st July 2017 With the recent drought in Southern Africa compounding the unpredictable impact of climate change on food production, local farmers are converting to drip irrigation in an attempt to conserve water, using less to produce more, according to Crookes Brother’s Limited (CBL) MD Guy Clarke. During a... 

With drought threatening food security, farmers turn to drip irrigation

SA committed to increasing trade with Zambia, says DTI minister

By: African News Agency      21st July 2017 South Africa was committed to increasing trade and addressing the trade imbalance with Zambia. This was according to South Africa’s Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies, ahead of a two-day Outward Trade and Investment Mission to Lusaka, Zambia, from 24-25 July. 

SA committed to increasing trade with Zambia, says DTI minister
Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies

Lessons learned underpin multicontinent sugar strategy

By: Robyn Wilkinson     21st July 2017 Specialised polymer manufacturer Vesconite Bearings believes that the experience it has gained from KwaZulu-Natal sugar mills will prove instrumental in ensuring the success of its multi-continent sugar strategy and grow the company’s revenue from new markets. 

Lessons learned underpin multicontinent sugar strategy
EDDIE SWANEPOEL The knowledge gained from hard-wearing African sugar applications has been essential in converting other relatively new markets to using Vesconite Bearings’ products

Sugar industry to make the most of yield recovery

By: Robyn Wilkinson     21st July 2017 As KwaZulu-Natal’s sugar cane growers start to recover from the effects of the drought, the South African Canegrowers’ Association (SA Canegrowers) is urging the industry to remain resilient and look for opportunities to diversify their operations. 

Sugar industry to make the most of yield recovery
BOUNCING BACK The SA Canegrowers board of directors is optimistic about the 2017/18 season, with improved rainfall set to improve production levels

Nakambala sugar mill expansion project completed

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     21st July 2017 During the third quarter of 2017, project management and equipment design company Bosch Projects completed the implementation of the Nakambala Product Alignment and Refinery project in Mazabuka, Zambia. Bosch Projects sugar sector director Steven Rosettenstein, who was the project manager for the... 

Nakambala sugar mill  expansion project completed
NAKAMBALA SUGAR MILL Illovo Sugar appointed Bosch Projects as engineering, procurement and construction management consultants for the mill’s expansion

Industrial IoT platform enables companies to customise solutions

By: Schalk Burger     14th July 2017 Network solutions provider Vula Telematix is inviting industrial and commercial organisations to develop fit-for-purpose industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) systems for their specific needs on an open IoT platform, which will help to stimulate local innovation and use of IoT, says Vula Telematix... 

Farmers still face headwinds despite return to growth

By: David Oliveira     14th July 2017 Despite the recent positive news from Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) indicating that the agriculture sector had increased 22.2% in the first quarter of 2017 and that a record maize harvest is on the horizon for this year, the recent sovereign downgrades by credit agencies and news that the... 

Desalination could be the answer, but financial hindrances remain – DWS 

By: Anine Kilian     13th July 2017 While desalination could be the answer to addressing water crises in South Africa, there are still a number of financial challenges surrounding it, says Department of Water and Sanitation infrastructure and operations CEO Leonardo Manus. Speaking to Engineering News Online at a media roundtable... 

Desalination could be necessary to mitigate S Africa’s water woes 

By: Anine Kilian     13th July 2017 With freshwater resources in South Africa almost fully utilised and heavily stressed – especially in the Western Cape, where drought conditions have left dam levels at 25% – water scarcity conditions are set to increase in the country, especially in winter months, according to engineering... 

Desalination could be necessary to mitigate S Africa’s water woes

Digital innovation, while necessary, comes with risks – Deloitte

By: Ilan Solomons     13th July 2017 While global competition has necessitated technological and digital innovation across all industries, there is legitimate concern globally that innovation could threaten job creation, particularly in traditionally labour-intensive sectors such as mining, manufacturing and agriculture, according... 

Digital innovation, while necessary, comes with risks – Deloitte
Panellists in discussion during Singularity South Africa’s Insider Insight Session

Bird Flu confirmed on new locations in Gauteng and Mpumalanga

By: African News Agency      12th July 2017 The Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) H5N8 virus – commonly known as bird flu – has been confirmed on two new locations on farms in Gauteng and Mpumalanga, the department of agriculture, forestry and fisheries said on Tuesday. “The new locations involved commercial layer chickens on farms... 

SAB invests R2.8bn in expanding Gauteng breweries

By: Anine Kilian     11th July 2017 Multinational beverage and brewing company Anheuser-Busch InBev (AB-InBev) subsidiary South African Breweries (SAB) will invest R2.8-billion into brewery expansions, including two new packaging lines for returnable glass bottles, at its Alrode and Rosslyn breweries, in Gauteng. During a media... 

SAB invests R2.8bn in expanding Gauteng breweries
AB-InBev Africa president Ricardo Tadeu

Britain to keep preferential access for poor countries, post-Brexit

By: Keith Campbell     7th July 2017 The British Government has publicly committed itself to maintaining duty-free access to British markets for the world’s least-developed countries (LDCs, as defined by the United Nations) following the UK’s departure from the European Union (EU). London further expressed a desire to increase trade... 

Control system minimises dust escape during grab discharge

By: Simone Liedtke     7th July 2017 Materials handling equipment supplier BLT South Africa’s Samson travelling Eco-Hoppers have an effective dust control system that minimises the escape of dust during the grab discharge cycle. 

Control system minimises dust escape during grab discharge
DUST CONTROL The grab discharge cycle includes transferring materials down the line using handling systems

Filter standard replacement to occur over 18-month transition period

     7th July 2017 The new test standard for International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 16890, for filter testing and assessment, replaced European Standard (EN) 779 as of January this year, with a transition period of 18 months. 

Filter standard replacement to occur over 18-month transition period
SHIFTING PARADIGM This new method for the evaluation of air filter elements represents a paradigm shift

New-generation Sentient hand-held unit for gas detection

     7th July 2017 The new generation Ingress Protection 68 rated Sentient handheld unit is widely regarded as the most cost effective, sophisticated and low maintenance gas detection device in the mining industry today. 

New-generation Sentient hand-held unit for  gas detection
GAS DETECTION SYSTEMS This instrument was developed by Booyco Electronics, specifically to improve safety in any confined spaces

Rustenburg scrubber upgrade project set for completion

By: Simone Liedtke     7th July 2017 Chemicals and process engineering company Lodestone Engineering is set to complete the supply of equipment as part of an upgrade to an existing large wet scrubber for a major platinum producer in Rustenburg by the end of this month. 

Rustenburg scrubber upgrade project set for completion
UPGRADED SCRUBBER Valued at about R10-million the overall project upgrades an existing 3.6-m-diameter scrubber

Thermometer designed and tested for industry use

     7th July 2017 Handheld-products supplier Fluke - represented locally by distribution service provider Comtest - has launched the Fluke 64 MAX IR thermometer with internal memory, unattended monitoring, improved accuracy, increased battery life, as well as the precision needed to do the job accurately. 

Thermometer  designed and tested  for industry use
THERMOMETER APPLICATIONS Applications include the industrial maintenance, the electrical as well as the heating, ventilation and air conditioning industries

Need for accurate designs of dosing systems 

By: Simone Liedtke     7th July 2017 The designs for dosing systems in the gas and fumes industries have to be accurate to ensure safety, says chemical dosing and pumping applications supplier Packaged Metering and Pumping Solutions (PMPS) technical director David O’Neill. 

Need for accurate designs of dosing systems
Packaged Metering and Pumping Solutions’ David O’Neill talks about the company’s strategies with regards to the fracking process. Camerawork and Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Sugar industry strike avoided – Uasa

By: Creamer Media Reporter      6th July 2017 Uasa on Thursday said a strike in the sugar industry had been averted following the conclusion of an across the board wage agreement. The Sugar Industry Bargaining Council and Uasa this week finally agreed to a 7.5% increase, to be implemented from April 1, after hitting an impasse in May with a... 

Commission approves Dow, DuPont merger with conditions

By: Anine Kilian     5th July 2017 The Competition Commission has recommended to the Competition Tribunal that the proposed large merger between DuPont and Dow Chemical Company be approved with conditions.    Both Dow and DuPont are companies incorporated in accordance with the company laws of the US. Dow is the ultimate parent... 

South Africa faces land reform dilemma, partnership is key

By: Natasha Odendaal     5th July 2017 South Africa is facing a land reform dilemma, with the redistribution of land having progressed well below expectations and with much of the land already transferred falling into an economic abyss. Of the estimated 5.9-million hectares of functional farms that had been transferred, up to 90% have... 

South Africa faces land reform dilemma, partnership is key

Learning from, replicating land reform successes a better option than land grabs – Hanekom

By: Natasha Odendaal     5th July 2017 Expropriation of land without compensation will result in serious damage to the economy and is fundamentally unjust, Member of Parliament and former Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom reiterated on Wednesday. Speaking at the Agribusiness Africa conference, in Kempton Park, he said that while the... 

Learning from, replicating land reform successes a better option than land grabs – Hanekom
Photo by Duane Daws
Derek Hanekom

Research is crucial for agricultural growth – ARC

By: Natasha Odendaal     4th July 2017 The expansion of public–private partnerships to develop innovation and research networks that are critical to the sustainable growth of the agricultural sector, should be considered more deeply. With Africa’s population explosion, and the ever-pressing need to accelerate food production, more... 

Fly-farm venture mulls two more SA sites, appoints heavy hitters as it expands

By: Irma Venter     4th July 2017 Waste-to-nutrient group AgriProtein will expand its presence in South Africa with two new fly-farming sites, while also growing its research and development function in the country, says CEO Jason Drew. AgriProtein started operations in Cape Town in 2015, launching the world’s first... 

Fly-farm venture mulls two more SA sites, appoints heavy hitters as it expands

Research, technology key to surviving next drought – DuPont

By: Natasha Odendaal     4th July 2017 Research and technology will be key to surviving the next drought, with investments equal, at minimum, to the cost of drought required to mitigate the impact of the changing environment. Droughts cost some $6-billion to $8-billion globally every year, with 80% of the drought-related losses in... 

Agriculture sector needs to take a more futuristic approach for survival in a digital world 

By: Natasha Odendaal     4th July 2017 Technology has the potential to change the future landscape of the agriculture sector if used effectively and if participants are willing to “think bigger”, FutureWorld futurist and entrepreneur Craig Wing said on Tuesday. With ever-changing technologies in the fourth industrial revolution, it is... 

Agriculture sector needs to take a more futuristic approach for survival in a digital world
FutureWorld futurist Craig Wing discusses how technology can benefit the agriculture sector. Video and editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Forestry sector joins forces to mitigate impact of wildfires on plantations 

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     4th July 2017 Following the recent wildfires that swept across the Southern and Eastern Cape areas, industry bodies Forestry South Africa (FSA), Sawmilling South Africa (SSA) and the South African Forestry Contractors Association will mobilise additional contractor capacity to ensure that the interests of... 

Forestry sector joins forces to mitigate impact of wildfires on plantations

DTI to implement policy interventions to curb poultry industry losses

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     28th June 2017 Rather than make findings on the current state of the poultry industry and the ongoing challenges it faces owing to the dumping of imported chicken products, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), together with the government-led Poultry Task Team, which was established in January, would... 

Govt launches R1bn agroprocessing investment support programme

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     28th June 2017 Government’s R1-billion agroprocessing support scheme (APSS), aimed at supporting brown- and greenfield investments in the local industry, was launched by Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies at the Africa Big 7 Food Forum and Saitex, in Midrand, on Wednesday. The APSS further seeks to... 

Omnia FY17 results pinched by tough economy

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     27th June 2017 Chemicals producer Omnia on Tuesday reported a drop in headline earnings a share to 881c for the year ended March 31, from 944c in the prior financial year, owing to a tough economic environment. This resulted in an 8% drop in its profit before tax, to R856-million. 

Omnia FY17 results pinched by tough economy
Photo by Duane Daws
Omnia chairperson Rod Humphris

NAMC appoints new board members

By: Anine Kilian     26th June 2017 Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minster Senzeni Zokwana has appointed ten new members to the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC). The new NAMC board includes agribusiness specialists and entrepreneurs Sindile Faku, Fezeka Mkile, Happy Mohane, Boikanyo Mokgatle, Nonie Mokose, Diale... 

Kaap Agri lists on JSE

By: Anine Kilian     26th June 2017 Agricultural retailer Kaap Agri has listed on the JSE’s main board. “Listing on the JSE helps make Kaap Agri visible to a wider investor audience, which will draw in additional liquidity. The listing will also provide a platform for Kaap Agri to use its script for accretive merger and acquisition... 

Deep-sea trawling association appoints more representative executive committee

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     22nd June 2017 The South African Deep-Sea Trawling Industry Association (Sadstia) on Thursday said the existing members of its executive committee (Exco) have stood down, with four new executives, who are more representative of the ownership of the deep-sea trawling industry, having been elected to take their... 

Deep-sea trawling association appoints more representative executive committee

Rooibos Limited faces abuse of dominance charge

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     19th June 2017 South Africa’s largest rooibos producer Rooibos Limited has been referred to the Competition Tribunal for prosecution, for allegedly abusing its dominance and engaging in uncompetitive behaviour. Historically, rooibos tea processors obtained their supply from farmers through one-year supply... 

Rooibos Limited faces abuse of dominance charge

Company aims for positive impact on environment

By: Simone Liedtke     16th June 2017 Environmental management company I-CAT Environmental Solutions aims to deliver a product and service offering that impacts the environment favourably when compared with traditionally used products. 

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