The Western Cape has received good rainfall since 2018 following a prolonged period of limited precipitation. However, it is expected that the increased water availability will boost agricultural production.
According to the province’s Minister of Agriculture Ivan Meyer, in light of many disruptions to international trade due to COVID-19, trade facilitation bottlenecks continue to threaten the reliable supply of key agricultural products.
Meyer said these are related to trade infrastructure, the capacity of ports and tariff and non-tariff barriers.
“In addition, the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine has resulted in a sharp increase in some commodity prices, fertilisers and wheat, due to limited supply and growing uncertainty for future supply.
“Despite this, agriculture is pushing forward, as evidenced by projected harvests for various products,” Meyer indicated.
However, according to the deciduous fruit organisation, Hortgro’s exports estimates report, apple exports are projected to increase by 6% in 2022. Pear exports estimates for 2022 show an increase of 12% for this season compared to the previous season.
Nectarines exports are projected to grow by 26% compared to the previous season. Regions showing positive growth are Ceres, Berg River, Klein Karoo and Stellenbosch.
Overall, the peach exports are projected to show positive growth of 2% this season compared to the previous one. In addition, positive growth for the inspection region was reported for Ceres and Berg River at 7% and 10%, respectively, compared to the previous season.
Meanwhile, wheat production estimates from GrainSA project an increase of 4% (41 900 tonnes) in the province for the 2021/2022 season compared to 2020/2021. This growth can be attributed to the favourable rainfall received and 34 000 (10%) ha increase in the area under production.