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20 Jan 2017

The Management Committee of the Executive of Grain SA met yesterday in Pretoria to discuss, amongst other things, the current production conditions. There is gratefulness amongst farmers for the major turnaround in the general conditions following the severe drought of last year. “The current conditions are looking very good, but it is still very early to do a proper estimate as there are still a lot of things that need to happen before the crop is safely in the silos.” warns Jaco Minnaar, Chairperson of Grain SA.

The perception that is created that all the problems are now solved is premature. Many of the plantings were done right at the end and even after the optimum planting period and all of those crops run the risk of early frost before the plants are ready for harvesting. Earlier in the season the crops experienced a lot of wind damage and it is uncertain as to what extend it has recovered. Follow up rain in February and March will determine the size of the crop. Farmers should consider waiting for the official estimates before making huge marketing decisions. The track record of the National Crop Estimate Committee (NCEC) speaks for itself. The next area planted estimate of the NCEC will be released on Thursday 26 January 2017.

Grain SA is also aware of some investigations to establish if the devastating army worms are in South Africa as well. These worms caused substantial damage to the Zimbabwean and Zambian maize crops this season. Farmers should keep a close look at their crops to prevent damages.


Issued by:
Grain SA Communications

Further enquiries:
Jannie de Villiers, CEO, Grain SA
086 004 7246 | pretoria@grainsa.co.za | www.grainsa.co.za