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This is why...

August 2015


JANNIE DE VILLIERS, uitvoerende hoofbestuurder/CEO

The other day I read a very interesting quote which made me think anew about the condition in which our country and its people are finding themselves. Freely translated it went something like this: “The new world order is not formulated through political processes or economic powers, but by individuals who get together, take a collective decision, start doing it and spread the process.”

Is that not what Grain SA is doing? I experience it almost daily. Our Working Groups get together, discuss the problems of their members, decide what the solution would be and then start implementing it. The end-result is a country with food security and sustainable producers.

Our eye must remain on the ball! Election fever has started early; especially if we listen to all the comments about land reform. Fortunately there are always those who also realistically consider everything, and yes, everyone in the country is not politicians.

In the past month we had to hear from people who know that South Africa does not have the money for the many plans randomly announced in parliament. Another remarked in passing that: “South Africa deserves a better president. The courts will not allow him to get away with everything.” With regard to this last remark, we will just have to wait and see.

Even in conjunction with the poor crop results in the north it does seem that we will pass the 1 million ton mark for the soybean crop for the first time – another sign that the market is working properly. The demand and price was there and production followed. The expected improvements in genetic material will undoubtedly give a further boost to this sector of the industry. We trust that the late rains in the Cape will continue, thus enabling the region to harvest a good crop. Weather prophets are seemingly again forecasting dry spells for next year. Should that happen it will be more than merely a disaster, but as the faithful we must persist in our faith: Prosperity and not adversity – that is God’s promise.

Recently, I’ve been reading a lot about what experts have to say about difficult times in leadership. One thing is certain – character outperforms capacity every time. To remain resolute is not for sissies.

We have reached the 250 m mark of the 400 m land reform race. The men and women who have not practiced and have not trained their muscle endurance, are now going to hit the wall. A well-known boxer once said that if you cheat in the dark, early morning practice sessions, you will be exposed in front of many people under the bright lights of the boxing ring.

The pressure is on, all over, and our real motives and character will now begin to show. I have come to know Grain SA’s members as a group of producers who are not satisfied with the status quo; who get together, search for solutions and start doing something about the circumstances around them.

Our leaders are taking a heavy toll and have to support one another continuously to remain steadfast. “Why?” do you ask. For the sake of our children and grandchildren and because we now have to show the character of Him who for our sakes persevered and endured until all was fulfilled. That is why.

Publication: August 2015

Section: Features