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OVERVIEW

Agriculture and agri-processing A Wild Coast Special Economic Zone is planned.

Spekboom. Image: Wikipedia

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etting small-scale farmers connected to agri-processing value chains is a major goal for agricultural policy-makers in the Eastern Cape. The creation of a Special Economic Zone (SEZ) on the Wild Coast with a focus on agri-processing is part of a plan to achieve this. If farmers have access to the processing and production of products from meat, milk, wool and leather, greater value will be created and more jobs will become available. Agri-parks situated strategically around the province support the addition of value: these have been developed at Lambasi, Ncorha, Sundays River Valley, Butterworth, Matatiele and Sterkspruit-Senqu. The Eastern Cape Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform (DRDAR) has several programmes to support small-scale farmers. Sixteen feedlots have been established for livestock farmers. Berlin Beef, a joint government and private-sector export-oriented venture, aims to support transformation by supporting 200 black livestock farmers to participate in the business. Rural Enterprise Development (RED) hubs are a key plank in the strategy of the DRDAR to promote food security and employment creation. Small-scale farmers are supplied with equipment, infrastructure and training to help them engage with the mainstream economy. A farming incubator supported by the Thrive Fund of South African Breweries uses its R190-million loan book to support small-scale farmers in seven provinces. FarmSol provides loans and technical support helps farmers get access to value chains. SAB gets its ingredients for beer (barley, hops and maize) from FarmSol beneficiaries. The Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) supports agri-processing through loans and equity arrangements: projects that have received financial support include aquaculture, the production EASTERN CAPE BUSINESS 2020

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Sector Insight Spekboom and cannabis hold great potential. of dietary fibre from pineapples and bamboo products. There are about 70 000 people employed on commercial farms across the Eastern Cape, with a further 436 000 people dependent on smaller farms, mostly in the east. Addo Elephant National Park is home to a great concentration of “spekboom”, the world’s most efficient converter of carbon dioxide. Elephants love to eat it, but it also has become the plant of choice in carbon swops. An international airline will enter a partnership with a game reserve, for example, whereby the game reserve will plant several thousand stems. In return, the airline gets carbon credits. The National Woolgrowers Association of SA (NWGA), the country’s main producer organisation, is based in Port

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Eastern Cape Business 2020 edition  

The 2020 edition of Eastern Cape Business is the 13th edition of this highly successful publication that, since its launch in 2006, has esta...

Eastern Cape Business 2020 edition  

The 2020 edition of Eastern Cape Business is the 13th edition of this highly successful publication that, since its launch in 2006, has esta...

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