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Cover of Oilseeds Focus Vol 5 No 2 March 2019
WORKGROUP MINUTES ARCHIVES SUNFLOWER AND SOYBEAN 2014 16 January 2014
PLEASE CLICK ON THE LINKS BELOW TO VIEW INDIVIDUAL FILES
 3 NOVEMBER 2014 16 JANUARY 2014
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MINUTES OF A MEETING OF THE
SUNFLOWER & SOYBEAN FORUM
HELD ON 16 JANUARY 2014 AT 10:00 AT THE OFFICES OF THE OILSEEDS INDUSTRY, 49 RIVER ROAD, WOODMEAD
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1. OPENING

 

The meeting was opened with a prayer, offered by Mr Gerhard Keun.

2. WELCOME

 

The Chairperson, Mr GJH Scholtemeijer, welcomed all to the first meeting of the Forum during 2014.

3. ATTENDANCE

 

Present Mr GJH Scholtemeijer Chairperson
  Mr J Botma OAC
  Ms A de Beer ARC-GCI
  Dr L du Plessis PRF Contractor
  Mr N Hawkins SAGIS
  Mr C Joubert NAMC
  Mr K-J Leeuw ARC-Irene
  Mr L Lourens Simba
  Mr C Louw GrainSA
  Ms W Louw SAGL
  Ms M Purnell GSI
  Mr J Rankin GrainSA
  Ms M Scheepers DAFF
  Mr C Sturgess JSE Commodities
  Mr G Keun CEO: OPDT/OAC/PRF
  Ms E Harmse OPDT/OAC Contractor
 
Apologies Dr E Briedenhann OAC/PRF
  Dr L Chetty Sansor
  Ms N de Klerk ARC-GCI
  Mr J Grey GrainSA
  Dr S Lamprecht CSIR-IPP
  Dr A Nel ARC-GCI
  Mr FAS Potgieter PRF/OAC
  Mr T Prinsloo ARC-GCI
  Dr Y Tewoldemedhin CSIR-IPP
  Dr G Thompson ARC-GCI
  Dr W van der Walt OAC
  Dr P van Twisk PVT Consultants
  Mr L Verhoef Agratech Trade
 
4. PERSONALIA
 

Mr Potgieter was wished a speedy recovery, as was Dr van Twisk.

5. CONFIRMATION OF AGENDA
 

The agenda was accepted as it stood.

6. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
6.1 Approval of the minutes of the combined meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and the Soybean Working Group held on 27 October 2013
  Resolved:
6.1.1 That the minutes of the combined meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and Soybean Working Group, that was held on 23 October 2013, be accepted as a true and fair reflection of that meeting.
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7. MATTERS ARISING
7.1 Marketing aspects
 

Mr Sturgess reported that an area differential would not be implemented for soybeans as matters stood at present, despite the fact that delivery points that were situated at some distance from the current delivery points caused a dilemma, as soybeans could not be delivered to those points.

The Chairperson requested that the Forum be consulted, should the matter of the implementation of an area differential on soybeans be reconsidered at some time in the future.

Mr Sturgess reported that the possibility of using soybean oilcake contracts as a hedging tool was currently being investigated. He said he would appreciate the opportunity to do a presentation on this and other developments at a future meeting.

7.1.1 Crop Estimates
 

The Chairperson tabled the document reflecting the final local production estimates of sunflowers and soybeans for the 2012-2013 production season, as well as the producers' intentions to plant sunflowers and soybeans in the 2013-2014 production season, and called on Ms Scheepers to comment.

Ms Scheepers said according to the final production estimate for 2012-2013, local soybean production had reached an all-time high of 784 500 tons, which was 134 500 tons, or 21%, more than the previous season's production estimate of 650 000 tons. She added that the average yield per hectare was 1,52 tons, which was 10% more than the 1,38 tons per hectare of the previous season.

Ms Scheepers reported that producers had indicated that they intended plant 516 000 hectares to soybeans in the 2013-2014 season, which represented a decrease of 0,1% or 500 hectares, in comparison to the previous production year's hectarage of 516 500. She said Mpumalanga would once again be the leading soybean production area, where an estimated 215 000 or 42% of the total crop would be planted, followed by the Free State with 200 000 hectares (39%), KwaZulu-Natal with 33 500 hectares (7%) and North West province, with 22 000 hectares (4%). She noted that the area planted to soybeans in Limpopo was expected to decrease by 10%, followed by the Free State, with a decrease of 7% and Gauteng, with a decrease of 5%.

Ms Scheepers said according to the final production estimate for 2012-2013, 557 000 tons of sunflower had been produced, which was 7% or 35 000 tons more than the previous season's production estimate of 522 000 tons. She noted that the average yield per hectare was 1,10 tons, with the previous season's average yield being 1,15 tons per hectare.

Ms Scheepers reported that producers intended to plant 620 000 hectares to sunflower during the 2013-2014 production season, which represented a 23% (115 300 hectares) increase on the previous production year's hectarage of 504 700. She said the Free State would be the leading sunflower producer, with 280 000 hectares, which represented a 27,3% increase on the previous season's plantings, followed by the North West Province with 225 000 hectares, or a 28,6% increase, and Limpopo with 110 000 hectares, or a 11,1% increase. She added that it was estimated that 45% of the 2013-2014 sunflower crop would be planted in the Free Sate, 36% in the North West and 18% in Limpopo.

Ms Scheepers reported that she and Ms Beukes had extrapolated data from the Crop Estimates Committee's (CEC) random sample of producers' estimates, had compared that data with the results of the 2007 census, and had calculated that between 1 600 and 1 700 local producers cultivated soybeans.

The Chairperson thanked Ms Scheepers for her contribution.

7.1.2 SAGIS
(Resolutions 13.12.1 and 13.13.1 of the minutes of the Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and Soybean Working Group of 23 October 2013)
 

Mr Hawkins presented an overview of the national and international supply and demand situation of soybeans and sunflowers, and of the situation with regard to the CEC's estimates and SAGIS deliveries. He also provided information on sunflower and soybean imports and exports, consumption, stocks and local and international prices. Cognisance was taken that the data could also be accessed at the SAGIS website.

Mr Hawkins expressed SAGIS' gratitude to those parties who made it possible for SAGIS to fulfil its commitments. He also thanked the industry for its commitment to SAGIS, and added that SAGIS would strive continuously to provide relevant information, that would facilitate decision making by all those involved in the soybean and sunflower industries.

Cognisance was taken of the SAGIS Monthly Bulletin dated 22 November 2013, and the SAGIS Weekly Bulletin dated 12 December 2013.

In response to a question by the Chairperson, Mr Hawkins confirmed that SAGIS kept tally of those local oil imports that were intended for distribution to South Africa's neighbouring countries. He said two systems were in place in this regard, viz a system that made provision for imports without tariffs being levied, and a system where refundable tariffs were payable on proof of payment. He noted that the South African Revenue Services (SARS) provided a valuable service, although it was difficult to extract information from them.

The Chairperson thanked Mr Hawkins for his contribution.

Mr Louw raised the matter with regard to the marketing years for sunflower and soybeans, and said it had been resolved that SAGIS would be officially requested to amend the marketing years of soybeans from the current period of 1 January to 31 December to the period 1 March to 28 February.

Mr Keun reported that Mr Pietman Botha, previously employed by GrainSA, had reported that SAFEX had requested that the marketing years be amended, during the Forum's meeting during November 2011. He said the Forum had supported SAFEX's request. He said GrainSA and the South African Cereals and Oilseeds Trade Association (SACOTA) had in the meantime requested that the Forum formalise their support by means of an official letter to SAGIS.

Mr Sturgess reported that SAFEX had already implemented the system of revised marketing years. Mr Keun said he would submit a formal request to SAGIS.

Mr Hawkins noted that SAGIS would provide information on both sets of marketing years during the transition period, so as to avoid any possible confusion.

  Noted:
7.1.2.1 That SAGIS would be formally requested to implement a system of revised marketing years for soybeans and sunflowers.   Chairperson
Sunflower and Soybean Forum
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7.2 Oilseeds information
(Item 7.5 of the Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and Soybean Working Group of 23 October 2013)
 

Cognisance was taken of the Oilseeds industry's intention to publish a quarterly magazine on local and international matters of interest to the groundnut, sunflower and soybean industries.

8. PRODUCER MATTERS
8.1 KwaZulu-Natal, Western and Eastern Cape
 

The Chairperson said he had noted that maize and soybean plantings were growing exceptionally well, while travelling through KwaZulu-Natal recently. He added that the CEC's estimate of 33 500 hectares soybeans for that province seemed to be on target. He said KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern and Western Cape were generally not considered to be sunflower production areas of note.

Ms de Beer reported that no problems had been experienced with any of the soybean cultivars trials that had been planted in KwaZulu-Natal.

Mr Louw said the soybean planting season had been delayed by the rain coming in a bit late. He noted that more rain was needed during the current hot spell.

8.2 Mpumalanga and Gauteng
 

The Chairperson said according to producers' estimates 215 000 hectares would be planted to soybeans in Mpumalanga in the 2013-2014 season, while 19 000 hectares would be planted in Gauteng.

Mr Louw reported that sunflower production in Mpumalanga was restricted to the Delmas area, where limited plantings were done. He said soybeans had been damaged by severe hail in certain areas. He mentioned that heavy rains had fallen in Mpumalanga, that had been followed by hot and dry weather.

The Chairperson said Gauteng had experienced normal weather conditions thus far.

8.3 North West and Limpopo Province
 

Mr Rankin reported that plantings of both soybeans and sunflowers had been delayed in the North West. He said although all of the crops were looking good, the need for rain would become critical within the next seven days. He agreed that sunflower production had increased in that province.

Mr Rankin said no-till producers would stick to their crop rotation recipes, and would continue planting soybeans. He noted that problems with financing had resulted in some producers only buying seed, and applying a top-up fertiliser only.

Mr Louw said most crops in Limpopo were cultivated under irrigation.

8.4 Free State
 

The Chairperson noted that Free State producers had indicated that they intended to plant 200 000 hectares to soybeans, and 280 000 hectares to sunflower in the 2013-2014 season.

Mr Botma said it seemed as if producers had planted less sunflower than they had intended to, and that the same applied to soybeans. He noted that this decrease had been in favour of groundnut production, due to favourable groundnut prices. He said soybean plantings had been done timeously, due to early rains in certain areas, and that sunflower had been planted in those areas where the rains had been delayed. He noted that some of the maize and soybean hectares had been planted to sunflower, as sunflower was considered to be a less risky crop.

8.5 General
 

Ms de Beer said she considered the current situation with regard to local soybean production to be quite positive, although rain was becoming an urgent issue, especially in areas like Marquard, in the Free State.

9. RESEARCH
9.1 Sunflower
9.1.1 Sclerotinia survey
 

Ms Scheepers confirmed that the CEC would once again do the annual Sclerotinia survey during May and June of this year.

9.1.2 Sunflower value chain study
(Resolution 10.2.2.1 of the minutes of the Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and Soybean Working Group of 23 October 2013)
 

The Chairperson ruled that the matter be held in abeyance.

  Resolved:
9.1.2.1 That feedback is being awaited on the study on the sunflower value chain.   Chairperson
Sunflower and Soybean Forum
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9.1.3 List of research projects 2014-2015
 

Cognisance was taken of the list of the research projects that had either been approved or were still being considered by the Oilseeds Industry.

Ms Louw said the sunflower and soybean crop quality reports would be published by the end of March.

Mr Rankin said as far as he was aware Alternaria had caused infection on sunflower during the very rainy season of 2011, but added that Alternaria had not really been considered to be a problem during the last two years. The Chairperson mentioned that producers and seed companies had noted that Sclerotinia and weak emergence were considered to be the main problems in sunflower production. He said Dr Lamprecht's research on the role of pathogens in sunflower seedling diseases could cast some light on the issue of weak emergence. He noted that the results of the sunflower value chain study would probably provide guidance on the way forward in boosting the local sunflower industry.

The Chairperson said it would not be desirable for local sunflower production to exceed one million tons per annum, due to the volume of the fibre fraction in sunflower oilcake, which limits, demands for such, and therefore sunflower per sé.

Dr du Plessis noted that it would be possible to use sunflower seed husks as biomass in the production of the next generation of biofuels. He said such a process could be commercially viable within the next three years or so.

9.2 Soybeans
9.2.1 National cultivar trials 2012-2013 and 2013-2014
 

Cognisance was taken of the soybean cultivar recommendations for 2013-2014.

Ms de Beer noted that the recommendations had been published in a more reader friendly format. She said the latest variety list had also been included, as requested by the National Cultivar Evaluations Committee.

Ms de Beer said it had already been reported that soybean trial plantings had been delayed somewhat during the current season, due to too much or too little rain. She noted that the first planting was done on 30 October, and the last on 9 December. She added that 22 trials had been planted with 31 cultivars. She reported that the Delmas trial had been damaged by hail, but had since recovered well, and that the trial at Villiers had suffered damage due to weed killer, but had also recovered.

Ms de Beer mentioned that rain was urgently needed at the locations in Marquard, Migdol and Hoopstad. She said rain had caused damage on the trials planted at Middelburg and Stoffberg.

Ms de Beer confirmed that information days would be presented at the trials.

The Chairperson thanked Ms de Beer for her contribution.

9.2.2 Soybean rust
9.2.2.1 Soybean rust trap crops
 

No infection reported thus far on the soybean rust trap crops.

9.2.3 Rhizobium: feedback
(Resolution 10.1.4.1 of the minutes of the Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and Soybean Working Group of 23 October 2013)
 

The Chairperson ruled that the matter be held in abeyance.

  Resolved:
9.2.3.1 That feedback is being awaited on the discussion between the OAC, the PRF and Drs Hassen, Rong and Venter of the ARC-NIPP on the issue of regulating Rhizobium inoculants distributed locally.   Chairperson
Sunflower and Soybean Forum
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9.2.4 List of Protein Research Fund (PRF) research projects 2014-2015
 

Cognisance was taken of the list of the research projects that had either been approved or were still being considered by the PRF.

10. SEED
 

Mr Keun reported that the new soybean and sunflower variety lists were distributed on 19 December, and that these were available in an electronic format from the offices of the Oilseeds Industry. He said cognisance should be taken that a number of cultivars had been deleted from the lists.

Mr Louw reported that no complaints had been received from producers about a shortage of seed for planting in the 2013-2014 production season. He mentioned that GrainSA and Sansor were investigating the possibility of implementing a system of end-point royalty payments, as a way of compensating the seed companies for seed retained as grain, for planting purposes. He said the wheat industry had made a lot of progress in this regard, and added that the Oilseeds Industry would be consulted on the possibility of implementing such a system for soybeans. He noted that GrainSA was of the opinion that this would be to the benefit of the industries concerned.

The Chairperson said in his view, this would be the only way South African producers could continue benefitting from the technological advances made by seed companies such as Monsanto.

11. TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER
11.1 Information days during 2014
 

Cognisance was taken of the following information days:

End Jan / Early Feb Soybean Yield Competition Farmers' Day
End Jan / Early Feb Soybean Yield Competition Farmers' Day
3 February Pioneer Information Day, Brits
4 February Pioneer Information Day, Delmas
5 February Pioneer Information Day, Ermelo
6 February Pioneer Information Day, Bergville/ Winterton
7 February Pioneer Information Day, Bethlehem
20 February ARC-GCI Farmers' Day; and
2-4 September No Till Conference

The Chairperson expressed his concern at the dearth of sunflower information and farmers' days. Mr Keun said he would contact Dr Nel of the ARC-GCI and the seed companies to obtain relevant information.

  Noted:
11.1.1 That the ARC-GCI and seed companies would be contacted to obtain information on forthcoming sunflower information and farmers' days.   Mr Keun
SSForum
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12. ADDITIONAL ITEMS
12.1 Articles
 

Cognisance was taken of the articles "Droogte kry Pannar se sonneblombaster nie onder", "Sonneblom in bewaringsboerdery", "Wat is aan te beveel vir sonneblomkultivars vir 2013/2014", "Beste sonneblomme vir hierdie somer", "Oliesade se toekoms al blinker", "Syngenta: 'n markleier in sonneblomsaad", "Hoë volatiliteit as gevolg van makro-faktore", "Hoë internasionale voorrade plaas druk op oliesadepryse w√™reldwyd", "A look at the grain and oilseeds market, with an overview of the sunflower industry", "Sojabone is wêreld se nuwe voedselbasis", "Sojabone kry groter parsvermoë", "Sufficient management critical for higher soybean yield" ", "Vind die 'verlore ton' per hektaar", "Voorstel maak sojaboere die herrie in", and "Late rain causes switch from maize to soya bean".

12.2 Sunflower Week in Review
 

Cognisance was taken of the Sunflower highlights dated 4 and 18 November and 2 and 16 December 2013, respectively, and of the Sunflower Week in Review, dated 12 and 25 November and 9 December 2013, respectively.

12.3 Oil World
 

Cognisance was taken of Oil World Weekly dated 22 and 28 November 2013, respectively.

12.4 Merit awards
(Resolution 13.6.1 of the minutes of the Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and Soybean Working Group of 23 October 2013)
 

Mr Keun called on the members to submit nominations for awards to deserving individuals for meritorious contributions to the sunflower, soybean and groundnut industries. He said awards were made in the categories best scientific article, best PhD thesis, best MSc dissertation and exceptional contributions to the oilseeds industry.

  Resolution:
12.4.1 That cognisance be taken that nominations were being awaited for awards to deserving individuals for meritorious contributions to the oilseeds and protein seeds industries.   Mr Keun
SSForum
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12.5 Soy Southern Africa (SSA)
 

The Chairperson said it was a challenge to promote the use of soybeans in human nutrition locally. He noted that food producers preferred to promote brands such as Pronutro, that contained soybeans, rather than the ingredients contained in the foodstuffs.

The Chairperson mentioned that the organisation Soy Southern Africa had been established with the view to promote soy for human food, but had thus far not enjoyed much success. He said the Oilseeds Industry had provided guidance and some administrative assistance to the organisation.

Mr Keun reported that he had attended various meetings of the SSA. He said the Steering Committee of the SSA was in the process of compiling a business plan, for consideration by the Oilseeds Industry. He said he would keep the members of the Forum updated on progress achieved. He added that the Oliseeds Advisory Committee had resolved to publish relevant articles in the popular media, as an interim contribution to the initiative.

The Chairperson noted that the Oilseeds Industry provided financing to projects managed by the Eden Foundation and GrainSA, which aimed to promote self sufficiency amongst small-scale farmers, by teaching them how to cultivate soybeans, and how to process the beans for household use.

Mr Keun mentioned that the company FutureLife was considered to be an important roleplayer, and was specifically interested in obtaining non-GM soybeans for use in their products. Ms Purnell said although there may be a niche market for soybeans, producers refused to plant non-GM soybeans, due to problems with weeds. Ms de Beer mentioned that it was also a challenge to cultivate non-GM soybeans in a system of conservation agriculture.

13. ELECTION OF OFFICE BEARERS
13.1 Election of Vice Chairperson
 

Mr Keun said a representative of the soybean industry and a representative of the sunflower industry on the Oilseeds Advisory Committee had to be elected to the positions of either Chairperson or Vice Chairperson of the Forum, and that the terms of office of the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson did not run concurrently. He mentioned that Mr Jan Botma, as a sunflower producer, was currently serving as Vice Chairperson, and that his term of office came to an end in February 2014.

Mr Keun called for nominations for a representative of the sunflower industry for the position of Vice Chairperson of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum for the period February 2014 to February 2016. Mr J Botma was unanimously re-elected as Vice Chairperson of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum.

  Resolution:
13.1.1 That Mr Jan Botma be re-elected as Vice Chairperson of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum for the period February 2014 to February 2016.   Mr Keun
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14. DATES OF MEETINGS
 

The dates of meetings of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum for 2014 were confirmed as:

• 7 April; and
• 3 November

The Chairperson noted that the July meeting of the Forum would take the form of a soybean symposium. He suggested that the possibility of presenting a sunflower symposium during July 2015 be investigated.

  Resolution:
14.1 That the possibility of presenting a sunflower symposium during July 2015 be investigated.   Mr Keun
Mr Louw
SSForum
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15. ADJOURNMENT
 

The Chairperson thanked the members of the Forum for their attendance at, and contributions to, the meeting. There being no further business to discuss, the meeting was adjourned at 12:30.

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