South Africa is currently faced with a wine glut of 289 million litres, due to the ban on the sale of liquor during the lockdown period to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.
Raging wildfires that have destroyed nearly 100 000ha in the western Free State since Sunday, 18 October, are being fanned by strong winds. The fires reportedly started on Sunday when service delivery protesters burned tyres on the R708 road between Hertzogville and Christiana.
According to DA MP Annette Steyn, protest action that took place in Senekal in the Free State, where two men accused of the murder of farm manager Brendin Horner appeared for their bail hearing in the Magistrate’s Court on Friday, 16 October, had been mostly peaceful.
While organised agriculture bodies have welcomed many of the actions and goals set out in the economic restructure and recovery plan announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa this week, they want more details on how it will be effectively implemented.
Police Minister Bheki Cele has undertaken to investigate the allegations of police involvement in the livestock theft that plague farmers in the eastern Free State. This was according to Herkie Viljoen, chairperson of the Bethlehem Agriculture Union and Security organisation.
Due to the ban on wine sales during the national lockdown to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, the South African wine industry has been left with an unprecedented oversupply of wine.
There have been calls for calm as tensions run high after a protest outside the Senekal Magistrate’s Court turned violent last week.
ZZ2, one of the largest farming businesses in South Africa, has vehemently denied reports that farmworkers were given an ultimatum by the company to either remain onsite during the COVID-19 lockdown period, or go home without pay.
The man who was arrested following the protest action outside the Senekal Magistrate’s Court earlier this week, will appear in the same court on Friday, 9 October on a charge of public violence and malicious damage to property.
The South African agriculture sector is advanced, creative and entrepreneurial. This was according to Dan Hennesy, vice president of the Land O’ Lakes member-owned, agricultural co-operative, based in Minnesota in the US.
As things stand, South Africa’s summer crop farmers who hope to benefit from the significant drop in the diesel price from midnight on Tuesday, 6 October, are unlikely to have their orders interrupted or delayed.
The case of the two suspects who appeared in the Senekal Magistrate’s Court in connection with the murder of Free State farm manager Brendin Horner, has been postponed to 16 October when their bail application will be heard, according to Brigadier Motantsi Makhele, spokesperson for the South African Police Service in the Free State.