SABC News - SA could import less wheat this year:Sunday 7 October 2012

SA could import less wheat this year

Sunday 7 October 2012 15:15

Mariska Botha

None like this year's bumper wheat harvest has ever been experienced.

None like this year's bumper wheat harvest has ever been experienced.(REUTERS)

South Africa uses 3, 2 million tons of wheat every year and usually more than half of this must be imported. However, the country could be in a position to import less wheat following an exceptional rainfall season that has produced some of the best wheat in years.
But, Carl Opperman of Agri Wes-Cape is quick to point out that it all depends on what the crop potential in the Free State will be.
“Let's say it (in the Free State) is exactly the same as we have here then the volume of wheat produced this year is going to be much higher than in the past, so yes, then we will most probably need to import less than we did in the past.”

As a result of the outstanding rainfalls, farmers will start harvesting at the end of the month in Koeberg.

One of the old farms in the area, owned by the Loubsers , has been around for nearly 40 years. And while there have been some notably productive seasons before, none like this year's bumper harvest has ever been experienced.

From the Southern Cape, through the Overberg to the Swartland, the wheat fields are a sight to behold.

Wheat farmer, Kosie Loubser says, “The climate … everything was beautiful. The year is good for the whole area. The whole Western Cape, South Western Cape, everywhere is beautiful, but that's just because of the weather … everything at the right time.”

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