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Cover of Oilseeds Focus Vol 3 No 4 December 2017
WORKGROUP MINUTES SUNFLOWER AND SOYBEAN 2017 24 April 2017
PLEASE CLICK ON THE LINKS BELOW TO VIEW INDIVIDUAL FILES
 24 APRIL 2017
MINUTES OF A COMBINED MEETING OF THE

SOYBEAN WORKING GROUP AND THE SUNFLOWER, SOYBEAN AND SOYFOOD FORUM

HELD ON 24 APRIL 2017 AT 10h00 AT THE OFFICES OF THE PRF AND THE OILSEEDS INDUSTRY
 
1.

OPENING

Dr Jos de Kock opened the meeting with prayer.

2.

WELCOME

Mr Gerhard Scholtemeijer welcomed all to the combined meeting, and extended a special welcome to Dr Máali of the ARC-GCI.

3. ATTENDANCE

Present Mr GJH Scholtemeijer Chairperson
  Mr J Botma OAC
  Mr W Cronjé OAC
  Mr H Davies Eden Soc Dev Foundation
  Mr G de Beer PRF Contractor
  Dr J de Kock PRF
  Dr J Dreyer PRF
  Dr L du Plessis PRF
  Mr G Engelbrecht K2 Seed Marketing
  Mr W Engelbrecht K2 Seed Marketing
  Mr N Hawkins SAGIS
  Mr M Jansen van Rensburg Mpumalanga Dept of Agriculture
  Mr C Joubert NAMC
  Mr G Keun PRF / OPDT CEO
  Mr C Kritzinger MBFi
  Mr K-J Leeuw ARC-AP
  Mr C Louw GrainSA
  Ms W Louw SAGL
  Dr S Máali ARC-GCI
  Ms W MacPherson Madumbi
  Ms L Mellet NAMC
  Prof F Meyer PRF
  Mr T Prinsloo ARC-GCI
  Ms M Purnell Agbiz Grain
  Mr G Roos Producer: Mpumalanga
  Mr C Sturgess JSE
  Mr K van Huyssteen SANSOR
  Mr R van Niekerk Agricol
  Mr C van Rooyen Landbouweekblad
  Mr A van Vuuren NWC
  Mr WF van Wyk PRF Contractor
  Mr L Verhoef Agratech Trade
  Ms M du Preez PRF
  Ms E Harmse PRF Contractor
 
Apologies Ms R Beukes DAFF
  Dr E Briedenhann PRF
  Mr H Conradie Producer: Mpumalanga
  Ms A de Beer ARC-GCI
  Mr J du Plessis Producer: KwaZulu-Natal
  Mr J du Plessis Producer: North West
  Mr C Jacobs Producer: Free State
  Mr J Jacobs
  Mr W Jonker Madifor
  Mr D Kritzinger Syngenta
  Dr S Lamprecht ARC-PPRI
  Prof N McLaren UFS
  Mr J Rankin Producer: North West
  Ms S Roberts Omnia
  Ms M Scheepers DAFF
  Dr D Strydom GrainSA
  Mr J Swanepoel Producer: North West
  Mr J van Niekerk Epko Oilseeds Crushing

4.

PERSONALIA

None reported.

5.

CONFIRMATION OF THE AGENDA

The agenda was accepted as it stood.

6.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

6.1

Minutes of the meeting of the Soybean Working Group held on 2 February 2017 and referral to website

  Resolution:
6.1.1 That the minutes of the meeting of the Soybean Working Group held on 2 Februa­ry 2017 be accepted as a true and fair reflection of that meeting, and that the minutes be referred to the PRF website for publication. Ms du Preez
Marketing
Committee
 
6.2

Minutes of the meeting of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soybean Food Forum held on 28 November 2016 and referral to website

  Resolution:
6.2.1 That the minutes of the meeting of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soybean Food Forum held on 28 No­vember 2016 be accepted as a true and fair reflection of that meeting, and that the minutes be refer­red to the OPDT website for publication.
 
7.

CURRENT SOYBEAN PRICE: LOCAL AND INTERNATIONAL

 

The Chairperson reported that the international soybean price had been on the decline of late, but has seemingly levelled off. He said it was a well known fact that prices were at their lowest at harvesting time.

Cognisance was taken that the derived producer price for soybeans stood at R5 629 as at 18 April 2017.

8.

SAGIS

 

Mr Hawkins presented an overview of the local and international supply and demand situation of soybeans and sunflower, and of the current situation with regard to producer deliveries, as measured against the official crop estimates data. He also provided information on local consumption figures, local and international prices, and imports and exports, among others. Cognisance was taken that this and other data were published on the SAGIS website.

Cognisance were also taken of the SAGIS Weekly Bulletin published on 13 April 2017 and of the Monthly Bulletin, published on 27 March 2017.

9.

SOUTH AFRICAN SUPPLY AND DEMAND ESTIMATES COMMITTEE

 

Mr Joubert delivered a presentation on the structure of the South African Supply and Demand Estimates Com­mittee, of the processes followed before meetings of the Committee were held, and of the procedure followed during meetings. He noted that performance measurements indicated that the supply and demand estimates for sunflower and soybeans were reasonably accurate.

Cognisance was taken of the South African Supply and Demand Estimates Reports for January, February and March 2017.

10.

WEATHER AND CLIMATE FORECAST

Mr Botma presented an overview of the temperature and precipitation levels expected from April to August 2017. He said it seemed as if the prospects for favourable weather had improved.

11.

CROP ESTIMATES

11.1

Latest crop estimates

Cognisance was taken of the document detailing the area planted estimate and second production forecast for summer crops for 2017.

The Chairperson noted that 635 570 hectares had been planted to sunflower, with a forecast production of 896 060 tons, with 573 950 hectares having been planted to soybeans, with an estimated production of 1 162 425 tons. He said 330 000 hectares had been planted to sunflower in the Free State, and 210 000 hectares in North West, while 241 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in Mpumalanga, and 240 000 hectares in the Free State.

12.

PRODUCER MATTERS

12.1

KwaZulu-Natal

12.1.1

General

The Chairperson noted that 30 500 hectares had been planted to soybeans in KwaZulu-Natal, with an expected production of 85 400 tons. He said 300 hectares had been planted to sunflower, with an estimated production figure of 300 tons.

Mr Davies reported that dryland producers were happy with the size of their harvests, which had exceeded their expectations. He said he had seen sunflower fields in Bergville, which was a first for him.

12.2

Mpumalanga and Gauteng

12.2.1

General

The Chairperson noted that 241 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in Mpumalanga, with an expected production of 482 000 tons, while 25 400 hectares had been planted in Gauteng, where a crop of 63 500 tons was expected. He said 2 200 hectares had been planted to sunflower in Mpumalanga, with an estimated production figure of 2860 tons, while 3 000 hectares had been planted in Gauteng, with an expected sunflower crop of 3 150 tons.

Mr Roos reported that fast growing soybeans had yielded much bigger crops that in the past, while slow growers had not done as well as usual, due to dry spells at the wrong times. He said sunflowers were not usually planted in the Highveld, due to problems with Sclerotinia. He mentioned that a lot of sunflower had been planted in the Roedtan area.

Mr Roos confirmed that Sclerotinia had also impacted negatively on soybeans in Mpumalanga, with a number of producers reporting that crop losses of around 50% of their fast growers were expected. He said this was a serious problem, that had affected the area from Hendrina right through to Stoffberg.

Mr van Wyk confirmed that he had also seen a lot of Sclerotinia damage on slow growers.

12.3

North West and Limpopo Province

12.3.1

General

The Chairperson noted that 23 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in North West, with an expected production of 46 000 tons. He said 210 000 hectares had been planted to sunflower, with an estimated production figure of 304 500 tons. He added that 90 000 hectares had been planted to sunflower in Limpopo, with an estimated production figure of 90 000 tons, while 8 500 hectares of soybeans had been planted, with an expected crop of 27 200 tons.

Prof Meyer reported that both slow and fast growing soybeans had done well on dryland in North West, with no Sclerotinia infections due to the dry conditions in that province. He said soybeans planted under irrigation had also performed well. He confirmed that sunflowers had done exceptionally well in the North West.

Mr van Vuuren reported that 14% more hectares had been planted to soybeans than in the previous year, with an average of 2,6 tons per hectare being forecast. He said this included approximately 1 000 hectares under irrigation. He mentioned that a very good, above average sunflower crop was also expected in North West. He said some sunflower producers had lost up to 60% of their crops, due to Sclerotinia, especially where the sunflower had been planted early in the season, and had started flowering during the wet months of January and February. He however added that most of the producers had planted sunflower at a later stage, and that those crops had not suffered any damage.

12.4

Free State

12.4.1

General

The Chairperson noted that 240 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in the Free State, with an expected production of 444 000 tons. He said 330 000 hectares had been planted to sunflower, with an estimated production figure of 495 000 tons.

Mr Botma reported that above average soybean crops were expected in the Free State, while sunflower had suffered a lot of Alternaria and Sclerotinia damage.

Mr W Engelbrecht said excellent soybean yields had been achieved in general. He reported that average yields in excess of 6 tons had been produced in the Northern Cape. He confirmed that Sclerotinia was a huge problem in the Eastern Free State and Mpumalanga, and added that one should refrain from stating that fast growers were more resistant to Sclerotinia, as this was not necessarily the case.

Mr van Wyk reported that the Kinross, Leandra areas on the Highveld had suffered hail damage on soybeans during March.

Mr de Beer reported that much more soybeans had been planted in the area between Viljoenskroon and Kroonstad.

12.5

Eastern and Northern Cape and Southwestern Districts

12.5.1

General

No report back.

13.

RESEARCH

13.1

Soybeans

13.1.1

National cultivar trials 2016-2017

Dr Máali reported that the national cultivar trials were being harvested. She said results would be available for all the trials.

13.1.2

Soybean rust

Dr de Kock reported that producers sprayed preventatively for soybean rust, with the result that there were very few reports of rust on soybeans during the current production season.

13.1.3

Soybean web study

No report back.

13.1.4

Sclerotinia

Mr Roos reported that Sclerotinia occurred over a widespread area of the Highveld in the 2016-2017 season. He said he had been informed that the disease was controlled in Argentina by planting on specific dates. He mentioned that he had noticed that fast growing cultivars planted early in the season suffered much less from Sclerotinia infection than the same cultivars, that had been planted later in the season. He said he had followed Mr van Wyk's advice to decrease plant density in order to decrease Sclerotinia infection, and reported that he had found this to be sound advice. He noted that Bellis currently afforded the best protection against the disease, but that he did not consider Bellis to be cost effective, due to the large volume of water needed to wet the plants thoroughly.

Mr van Wyk said in his view the biggest problem was that one could not predict what the weather conditions would be like in the coming production season. He added that the best approach in his view was to plant fast growers, to evade infection.

Mr W Engelbrecht remarked that some cultivars were more resistant to Sclerotinia than others. He agreed that planting at different dates was a sensible approach.

Dr de Kock pointed out that the article on page 9 of the Oilseeds Focus of March 2017 offered a description of the conditions required for Sclerotinia to develop. He noted that Bayer's Contans, a biological control product, was not effective when soil temperatures were high. He said the fungicide Sumisclex also required large volumes of water in the spraying process. He reported that no till practices had in some instances resulted in a decrease in the occurence of Sclerotinia in Argentina.

13.1.5

South African Cultivar and Technology Agency (SACTA)

The Chairperson reported that a system of endpoint royalties had been approved on wheat. He said the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC) had referred the Forum's application for endpoint royalties on soybeans back to the Forum, due to a number of uncertainties.

Ms Mellet reported that the NAMC had decided to go ahead with the Forum's application, if the Forum should approve this. She said it was hoped that the system could be implemented on 1 March 2018.

It was resolved unanimously that the Forum would support the NAMC's decision to proceed with the implementation of a system of endpoint royalties on soybeans.

Mr Louw noted that producers were very enthusiastic about an endpoint royalty system on soybeans.

Ms Purnell noted that collectors received a 2,5% facilitation fee for collecting the endpoint royalties.

Mr W Engelbrecht reported that the first new technology GM-soybean cultivars (RR2 and Intacta) would in all probability be registered in 2020, and that the new technology would only be available to producers in 2021. He confirmed that the first trials had been planted in the 2016-2017 production year.

Cognisance was taken of the correspondence relating to the system of endpoint royalties on soybeans.

  Resolved:
13.1.5.1 That the NAMC's decision to proceed with the implementation of a system of endpoint royalties on soybeans be supported. Mr Keun
Oilseeds Advisory Council
 
13.1.6

Feedback: GrainSA Congress

Cognisance was taken of Dr Dreyer's report on his attendance of the Soybean Breakaway session at GrainSA's recent congress.

13.2

Sunflower

Cognisance was taken of Dr Dreyer's report on his attendance of the Soybean Breakaway session at GrainSA's recent congress.

13.2.1

Sunflower Value Chain study

(Resolution 9.1.1.1 of the minutes of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soybean Food Forum meeting held on 28 November 2016)

Mr Roos reported that BASF had released a new fungicide called Bellis Plus.

14.

SEED

Mr W Engelbrecht reported that seed of new soybean cultivars would be marketed in the next production year.

15.

TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER

Mr W Engelbrecht reported that seed of new soybean cultivars would be marketed in the next production year.

15.1

Information Days 2017

Cognisance was taken that the NAMPO Harvest Day would take place from 16 to 19 May 2017.

15.2

Videos

No report back.

15.3

Oilseeds Focus

Cognisance was taken of the March 2017 edition of the Oilseeds Focus.

16.

SOYBEAN FOOD ASSOCIATION

The Chairperson said according to reports, 7% of the soybeans produced in South Africa were used in the production of soyfoods for human consumption. He reported that the Oilseeds Advisory Committee was looking at reviving the organisation for roleplayers in the soyfood industry, called Soy Southern Africa (SSA).

Mr Davies said it was essential that all roleplayers in the soyfood industry participated in such an organisation.

Mr Keun remarked that a soybean food awareness campaign would have to be launched.

17.

OTHER MATTERS

17.1

News reports

Cognisance were taken of the news reports included in Appendix L.

17.2

Articles

Cognisance were taken of the articles included in Appendix M.

17.3

Presentation: Dr Jan Dreyer

Dr Dreyer delivered a presentation on weed control in soybean production. He noted that the PRF had organised a symposium on the subject two years ago, and that his presentation would be a review of that which had transpired during that symposium. He said the reason why that topic had been selected for the symposium was that damage caused by diseases like Sclerotinia was obvious to the eye, while weeds could be considered to be silent yield thieves.

Dr Dreyer noted that the PRF's ideal was to achieve a total soybean crop of 2,5 million tons on one million hectares by 2020, or an average crop of 2,5 tons per hectare. He said it was hoped that the lessons learned during the symposium would contribute to the realisation of that ideal. He noted that internationally renowned experts on the subject were invited to speak at the symposium, while a number of local experts also addressed certain issues.

Dr Dreyer said information was provided on the management of weeds, on the allelopathic effect of certain weeds, on the efficacy of herbicides and the importance of water quality, on the yield cost of delaying weed control and on the practical experiences of a local producer, and provided some detail on these aspects. He also stressed the importance of pre-emergence herbicides.

Dr Dreyer concluded by saying that it was important to know one's enemy, and to be merciless in eradicating that enemy.

The Chairperson thanked Dr Dreyer for an interesting presentation.

17.4

Income and cost budgets

(Resolution 16.7.1 of the minutes of the Soybean Working Group meeting held on 2 February 2017)

Cognisance was taken that the income and cost budgets for summer crops will be released before the next planting season.

17.5

Sunflower Highlights

Cognisance were taken of the various editions of the Sunflower Highlights, included in Appendix N.

17.6

"The role of seedling diseases in poor establishment of sunflower in South Africa", Dr S Lamprecht, ARC-PPRI

Cognisance was taken of the copy of Dr Lamprecht's presentation titled "The role of seedling diseases in poor establishment of sunflower in South Africa".

17.7

LEAF Services

Mr Keun reported that the different grain industries had resolved to form a united front in future discussions with regard to the LEAF Services issue.

Ms Purnell said the various role players in the grain industry had met with the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF), and had agreed to establish a working group which would discuss the LEAF Services. She reported that LEAF Services would not be invited to attend that discussion.

17.8

Speaker: next meeting

(Resolution 16.3.2 of the Soybean Working Group minutes of 2 February 2017)

Mr van Wyk confirmed that he and Mr de Beer would share their views on the current production season with the attendees during the next meeting.

Mr Cronjé agreed to deliver a presentation on the use of soybeans in human food at a future meeting.

The Chairperson ruled that the resolution on a possible presentation on crop rotation and the use of inoccu­lants be held in abeyance.

  Noted:
17.8.1 That Messrs de Beer and van Wyk would share their views on the 2016-2017 production season with the attendees during the next meeting. Messrs de Beer and van Wyk
Soybean Working Group
17.8.2 That a presentation on the use of soybeans in human food would be delivered at a future meeting. Mr Cronjé
SSSF
17.8.3 That the possibility of inviting a speaker on crop rotation and the use of inocculants to address a future meeting will be investigated. Mr Keun
Soybean Working Group
 
18.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING

The next meeting will be held on 11 October 2017.

19.

ADJOURNMENT

The Chairperson thanked the members for their participation and inputs delivered. There being no further matters for discussion, the meeting was adjourned at 13:30.

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