South Africa’s food shortage over Ukraine war? Govt says not for ‘foreseeable future’

South Africa’s food shortage over Ukraine war? Govt says not for ‘foreseeable future’

This week, Agriculture Minister Thoko Didiza met with food processors and business leaders in the fruit and grain sectors. The meeting comes as Ukraine’s supply concerns have grown.

Didiza’s meeting is part of an interministerial task force set up by our government to examine how the war would damage the South African economy.

Following the meeting, the Department of Agriculture issued a statement. There is more than enough food to feed everyone. For the time being…

“We have gained enough understanding of our available food supplies and are confident that there are sufficient supplies for South Africa and the neighbouring Southern African Custom Union (SACU) countries for the foreseeable future, and therefore no need to panic that the country could experience shortages. We have benefitted from good harvests of a range of crops and fruits.”

Agriculture Minister Thoko Didiza

Didiza’s department says the country has already imported a large share of products that the country is dependent on.

Sharing knowledge going forward

Didiza says the farming industry has agreed to share more information with government about the state of food production conditions. This would, in theory, allow for easier and better planning in the sector were another big war have to break out.

Ukraine is a major exporter of grains, oilseeds, and fertilisers. While Ukraine and Russia are not major suppliers to South Africa, the supply has a key impact on the global market.

We know what this means. The prices go up all around.

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