Agriculture NEWS 

A change to hotter conditions is a looming challenge in the agricultural sector in the Southern African region

An expert has raised concern about the change from favourable rains to drier conditions, at a time of the deepening energy crisis continuing to present problems for different parts of the agricultural sector. South Africa, a net exporter of grain in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, is the epicentre of the dry spell. No less than eight people have been reported dead from the heatwave that swept across the country in recent days. Temperatures have soared above 40°C in some areas. “We are concerned about the impact of…

Read More
Agriculture NEWS 

Mining, Agri sectors attracting much-needed FDI

Mining and agriculture are two key sectors of the Zambian economy that are attracting foreign direct investment, which is expected to increase 158% to $8.5 billion by 2022, creating 74 000 jobs. The latest company to announce that it will be developing a new copper mine in Zambia is one linked to Microsoft’s Bill Gates, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Virgin’s Richard Branson, while on the agricultural front, Zambia has embarked on a robust agriculture outreach throughout the country, as Munkotachi Investments MD Christopher Lesa outlined in a Zoom interview. Munkotachi, a small and medium-sized enterprise (SME)…

Read More
Agriculture NEWS 

A shorter growth cycle for higher lettuce profits

Lettuce is beholden to an inconsistent market, with demand often dependent on the weather. Sustainable production therefore requires careful management of supply and demand. Equally important, as farmer Jakkie Mellet explained to Lindi Botha, is a shorter, more productive, growth cycle. Sterkspruit farm, near Lydenburg in Mpumalanga, is situated at the very top of Long Tom Pass, 2 150m above sea level. Its position holds significant benefits for owner Jakkie Mellet: it is isolated from other farms, keeping it relatively safe from the potential spread of pests and diseases, and…

Read More
Logistics -Transportation 

Macadamia farmers in for a four-year struggle

Trends in macadamia nut farming margins are showing a downward spiral of lower yields, lower prices and higher input costs. But with good management, farmers should be able to weather the storm. This was according to Juan Winter, managing director of Source BI, who was speaking at the AmberMacs Expo recently held in White River, Mpumalanga. “In 2019, farmers received on average R74/kg of dry-nut-in-shell (DNIS) for their produce, R83/kg in 2020 when the exchange rate was on their side, but then only R63/kg in 2021. We are still waiting…

Read More
Logistics -Transportation 

Corobrik donates pavers for Cape Flats informal settlement upgrade

Leading clay brick and paving manufacturer Corobrik has donated 250 m2 worth of paving for the Europe Informal Settlement Upgrade Project in Cape Town. Such has been the impact on the quality of life of the local community that the public plaza for which the bulk of the paving was allocated for is already being used for soccer, games and social gatherings, says Chandré Abrahams, Sales Manager, Western Cape. Corobrik donated its 65 mm Natural Earth variation paver. Europe is within 1 km of the Cape Town International Airport on…

Read More
GROUNDBREAKING 

Zutari’s 90-year journey of making an impact and building Africa

Leading consulting engineering and infrastructure advisory firm Zutari celebrated its 90th anniversary during special client and alumni events in Tshwane and Cape Town in November last year. These events also had displays of engineering technology used in the past, as well as new technology drastically transforming engineering design. It showcased artefacts going as far back as 1930s, which reflected technological advances over time. “The story of Zutari is in many ways also the story of the engineering industry in South Africa and beyond,” says CEO Teddy Daka. In addition to…

Read More
Agriculture NEWS 

Kuhn ECO Ranger sprayer so precise it can spray a logo in a field

Such is the accuracy of the ECO Ranger boom trailed sprayer from Kuhn, distributed locally by ValtraC, that it is ideal for precision spraying – and can even be used to spray words and logos in fields. The ECO Ranger series was developed for excellent operational performance and autonomy without sacrificing cost-effectiveness. The entry-level model is perfect for those looking to migrate from a mounted machine to a trailed sprayer. It features a 2 000 litre fibreglass tank and robust construction with a 16 m or 18 m boom with…

Read More
National 

2022 marked another year of significant expansion and innovation for BI

Celebrating its 65th anniversary last year, leading supplier Bearings International (BI) was also on track for another year of “significant growth,” says MD Bart Schoevaerts. He attributes the company’s upwards trajectory since the Covid-19 pandemic to maintaining close contact with its international partners and ensuring that stock levels remain intact despite the supply chain challenges. During the same period BI restructured its business to focus more on its various business units, namely Bearings and Seals, Motors and Drives, Power Transmission and Allied products. “It has allowed us to improve our…

Read More
Agriculture NEWS 

Zinc plays a small but critical role in ensuring food security in Sub-Saharan Africa

Sub-Saharan Africa is experiencing a “perfect storm” due to the ongoing electricity, fuel and fertilizer crisis, exacerbated by the war in Ukraine, according to Simon Norton, Executive Director of the International Zinc Association (IZA) Africa. While inflation levels urgently need to be tamed and the debt burden made more sustainable, perhaps no priority is more pressing than addressing food insecurity to safeguard the calorific and nutrition needs of Africa’s one billion people, and also to protect their human development. According to the 2022 Global Report on Food Crises Mid-Year Update,…

Read More
GROUNDBREAKING 

Durable drives for belt conveyor systems

BMG’s new NORD MAXXDRIVE®-XT industrial gearboxes, which were launched at the Electra Mining trade show last year, have been well received by leaders in bulk logistics, particularly for use in belt conveyor systems. MAXXDRIVE-XT industrial gear units – developed by NORD DRIVESYSTEMS to meet the demands of conveyor technology drives used in the handling of bulk goods and minerals – have advanced features for high thermal and mechanical load capacities, durability for extended service life and low maintenance requirements. “The power and speed ranges of the two-stage right-angle gear units…

Read More