OPDT   OIL & PROTEIN SEEDS DEVELOPMENT TRUST
OAC   OILSEEDS ADVISORY COMMITTEE

OPDT
OIL & PROTEIN SEEDS DEVELOPMENT TRUST

OAC
OILSEEDS ADVISORY COMMITTEE

Minutes

Sunflower and Soybean Forum (SSF)
held on 5 August 2010 at 10:00, at the offices of the Oilseeds Industry, Rivonia

  1. Opening

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

  2. Welcome

    The Chairperson, Mr GJH Scholtemeijer, welcomed all to the first meeting of the Forum for the year, with a special word of welcome to Dr Thompson of the ARC-GCI, Dr Ybema of NWK and Mr Leeuw of the ARC-API.

  3. Attendance

    Present

    Mr GJH Scholtemeijer Chairperson
    Mr GJ Pretorius Vice-Chairperson
    Ms R Beukes DAFF
    Mr P Botha GrainSA
    Ms A Enslin SAGIS
    Mr DJ Kok GSI
    Mr K-J Leeuw ARC-API
    Ms W Louw SAGL
    Ms PJ Mabusela DAFF
    Mr ST Msibi DAFF
    Dr AA Nel ARC-GCI
    Mr FAS Potgieter GrainSA
    Mr MT Prinsloo ARC-GCI
    Mr TS Sikhwari DAFF
    Dr GJ Thompson ARC-GCI
    Dr W van der Walt OAC
    Mr P van Heerden PPECB
    Dr P van Twisk PVT Consultants
    Dr S Ybema NWK
    Mr G Keun CEO: OPDT/OAC/PRF
    Ms E Harmse Secretariat

    Apologies

    Mr W Cronjé OAC
    Mr W Loubser SANSOR
  4. Personalia

    None reported.

  5. Confirmation of agenda

    The agenda was accepted as it stood, with the addition of:

    • Item 9.8 – New labelling regulations with special reference to oil;
    • Item 9.9 – Promotion of sunflower oil.
  6. Approval of minutes

    1. Approval of the minutes of the meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum held on 24 November 2009

      Resolved:

      1. That the minutes of the meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum, which was held on 24 November 2009, be accepted as a true and fair reflection of that meeting.
  7. Matters arising

    1. Marketing aspects

      1. Crop Estimates / Intentions to plant

        The Chairperson tabled the document reflecting the sixth production forecast for summer crops for the 2009-2010 production season, as well as a document titled "Oesskattings", compiled by Ms Beukes. He congratulated the Crop Estimates Committee on the quality of the documents presented to the various interest groups, and called on Ms Beukes to comment.

        Ms Beukes said according to the latest estimate, a record local soybean crop of 567 200 tons was expected in the 2009-2010 production season, which represented a 9,9% increase on the previous season's crop. She added that this was 66,9% more than the previous five years' average soybean crop of 339 900 tons, as illustrated by the graph reflecting the soybean yield since 2004-2005 on page one of the document "Oesskattings". She mentioned that the area of 311 450 hectares planted represented an increase of 31% compared to that of the previous season. She said the expected yield of 1,82 tons per hectare, which was lower than the previous season's average of 2,17 tons per hectare, was ascribed to high levels of precipitation, hail damage, pod shatter, and the cold, wet and cloudy weather experienced during December.

        Ms Beukes presented an overview of the soybean crops in the main production provinces from 2005-2006 to 2009-2010. She said Mpumalanga produced the most soybeans, followed by the Free State and KwaZulu-Natal, with the highest average yield per hectare produced in KwaZulu-Natal.

        Ms Beukes said she had also compiled a table indicating the total production of soybeans, producer deliveries to commercial structures from 2005-2006 to 2009-2010, and the tonnage of seed retained by producers.

        Ms Beukes proceeded to report on the production of sunflower during the 2009-2010 production season. She said the Crop Estimates Committee had estimated the commercial sunflower crop at 528 765 ton, which was 34% less than the previous season's production of 801 000 ton, and 15,1% less than the five year average crop of 622 600 tons. She mentioned that the area planted to sunflower stood at 397 700 hectares, which was 37,4% less than that of the previous season. She added that an average yield of 1,33 tons per hectare was forecast, which reflected a slight increase on the previous season's 1,26 tons per hectare. She gave an overview of sunflower crops in the main production provinces of the Free State, Northwest and Limpopo since the 2005-2006 production season to the 2009-2010 production season. She mentioned that she had also compiled a table indicating the total production of Sunflowers as opposed to producer deliveries to commercial structures from 2005-2006 to 2009-2010. She said at that stage there was a difference of approximately 70 000 tons between the expected sunflower crop for that season and producer deliveries as reported by SAGIS, and asked whether the forecast had to be adjusted downward.

        Mr Pretorius mentioned that the high rainfall experienced during the season had resulted in a smaller sunflower crop than initially expected by producers. He said most of the crop had been harvested. Ms Enslin indicated that she expected significant sunflower deliveries in July. Mr Botha agreed that producers had practically completed the harvesting of sunflowers.

        The Chairperson thanked Ms Beukes for the information she had provided.

      2. SAGIS

        Cognisance was taken of the various items of information issued by SAGIS, viz. the Market Information dated 5 August, the Weekly Bulletin dated 20 July, and the Monthly Bulletin, dated 21 July.

        Ms Enslin noted that international sunflower production had taken a knock, as evidenced by the table indicating world supply and demand of oilseeds on page six of the Market Information document. Mr Pretorius said he expected sunflower prices to increase, due to a number of factors, such as the severe drought in Russia.

    2. Soybean rust

      Cognisance was taken that rust had been reported in Piet Retief, and had been confirmed at Dirkiesdorp, Vryheid, Cedara, and also at Greytown, Normandien, Morgenzon, Greylingstad, Kinross, Kestell and Potchefstroom. The Chairperson expressed his concern that soybean rust had spread beyond the borders of KwaZulu-Natal.

    3. Consumption of edible oil in South Africa

      (Resolution 7.3.1 of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum minutes of 24 November 2009)

      The Chairperson remarked that the matter regarding the total consumption of edible oils in South Africa had been debated for some time. He said the oil crushing industry had indicated that they were not able to provide the relevant statistics.

      Mr Keun said the latest available indications were that total local oil consumption was in the region of 1,2 million tons, of which 800 000 tons were imported. Dr van Twisk mentioned that this figure included industrial use. Ms Enslin said the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC) had compiled a survey with the view to determining what information was required by the various role players, and in what way the said information was to be disseminated.

      The Chairperson said sunflower was considered to be the main source of oil in South Africa, although the utilisation of sunflower oilcake remained a challenge.

    4. Utilisation of sunflower oilcake

      (Resolution 7.1.2.1 of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum minutes of 24 November 2009 and resolution 12.8.1 of the Research Priority Committee minutes of 24 March 2010)

      The Chairperson called on Mr Klaas-Jan Leeuw to deliver a presentation on increasing the usage of sunflower oilcake in animal feeds. He said Mr Leeuw had been with the ARC's Animal Production Institute for more than twenty years, where he had been involved in research on intensive beef cattle production and nutrition.

      In his presentation, Mr Leeuw provided a brief overview of the utilisation of oilcake in livestock diets, and the levels at which sunflower meal or oilcake could be included in livestock diets. He also informed the meeting about the oil content of sunflower meal, the various treatments applicable to sunflower meal, substitution, inclusion levels of sunflower meal and supplementing sunflower meal.

      Mr Leeuw concluded his presentation by saying that research was required to determine to what extent factors such as cost, availability, environmental responsibility, oil content, enzymes and so forth were restricting the use of sunflower oilcake.

      The Chairperson said it seemed as if there were no limitations to the inclusion of sunflower oilcake in the diets of certain animals, that it all depended on the economics of the matter, and that there was very little one could do about the relevant economics. He opened the floor for questions.

      Mr Botha asked whether the latest information was included in the least cost ration calculations. Mr Leeuw said in his opinion the calculations were not up to standard, as cost per gram of protein was not calculated. He noted that the calculations would be more accurate, if one were to first calculate the cost per gram protein, and then translate that into a model.

      Mr Botha said sheep in the Western Cape were dependent on wheat stubble at certain times. He asked whether there was a way to produce feed that included oilcake, for the animals during those times. Mr Leeuw confirmed that this could be done. The Chairperson said the nutritional value of farmers' waste products, such as hay and stubble, could be factored into the feed formulation, and deficiencies added as required.

      The Chairperson said the issue was what could be done to improve the usage of oilcake in the South African feed industry. He mentioned that none of the members of the Animal Feed Manufacturers' Association (AFMA) used oilcake with an oil content of more than one percent. He said AFMA members used oilcake produced by means of a hexane extraction process. He noted that the South African feed industry was highly sophisticated with regard to least cost formulations. He said much effort had been expended in determining how the fibre fraction in sunflower oilcake could be broken down. He mentioned that the percentage of inclusion of sunflower oilcake could be increased if the oilcake were to be priced attractively.

      The Chairperson summarised by saying that anything could be done, as long as it was economically feasible. Mr Pretorius said expert opinion could be sought on the improved utilisation of sunflower oilcake, especially with regard to heat treatment to break down the carbohydrates. The Chairperson expressed his conviction that international research had been done on this issue, and added that a literature survey could be done on the subject. He suggested that the matter be referred to the Advisory Committee and the Research Priority Committee.

      Mr Leeuw was thanked for an interesting presentation.

      Resolved:

      1. That the matter regarding a possible literature survey on international research on the improved utilisation of sunflower oil-cake be referred to the Advisory Committee and the Research Priority Committee.

        Mr Keun

  8. Research

    1. Sclerotinia survey

      (Resolution 8.1.1 of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum minutes of 24 November 2009)

      The Chairperson acknowledged Ms Beukes and her colleagues' input with regard to the survey on the occurence of sclerotinia infection on sunflower and soybeans during the 2009-2010 production season. Cognisance was taken of the report on the impact of sclerotinia on sunflower and soybeans during the said production season. Mr Botha confirmed that GrainSA would call on their producer members to take part in the survey.

      Mr Pretorius noted his concern that sclerotinia infection on sunflower had doubled in comparison to the previous season, and that sclerotinia infestations had sporadically occurred in areas of the Northwest Province that had not previously been affected by the disease. Dr Nel mentioned that the incidence and intensity of sclerotinia infection varied significantly from season to season. Dr Ybema said in his experience, sclerotinia infection on sunflower had definitely increased.

      Ms Beukes noted that the affected sunflower area of 4,4%, as determined in the survey, seemed relatively insignificant. She said this could be due to the limited number of producers who participated in the survey, and asked whether there were alternative ways in which the information could be sourced. Dr Nel said the representatives of the various seed companies were well informed on the seed they had sold, and how the relevant crops had performed.

      The Chairperson suggested that SANSOR be contacted with the view to determining whether they could assist the Crop Estimates Committee with the annual sclerotinia survey. He said information on the American National Sclerotinia Initiative had been included with the documentation of that meeting, and added that the oilseeds industry maintained close contact with said Initiative. He mentioned that sclerotinia could be suppressed, but could not be prevented. He reported that the Sclerotinia Working Group, which was a joint initiative of the Protein Reseach Foundation and the oilseeds industry, met on an annual basis, and that no breakthroughs had yet been reported. He said Mr Keun intended to pay a visit to the Sclerotinia Initiative in Fargo, North Dakota early in 2011.

      Cognisance was taken that the resolution, passed at a previous meeting, on determining whether the effect of sclerotinia infection on the quality of oil had been researched, would be held in abeyance.

      Resolved:

      1. That it be investigated whether the effect of sclerotinia infection on the quality of oil had been researched, with feedback being provided at a following meeting of the Forum.

        Mr Keun

      2. That SANSOR be contacted with the view to determining whether they could assist the Crop Estimates Committee with the annual sclerotinia survey.

        Mr Keun

    2. Damage caused by pigeons on sunflower

      (Resolution 8.2.1 of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum minutes of 24 November 2009 and resolutions 8.2.1.2.1 to 8.2.1.2.4 of the Oilseeds Ad-visory Committee minutes of 30 April 2010 and resolutions 8.2.1.1.1 and 8.2.1.1.2 of the Research Priority Committee minutes of 4 May 2010)

      The Chairperson reported that research had previously been done on mitiga-ting the damage caused by pigeons to sunflower. He said any number of possible solutions had been noted, and added that the matter had been discussed at some length by the OAC and the Research Priority Committee. He mentioned that the Research Priority Committee had met with a representative of the Tshwane University of Technology (TUT), to discuss a project proposal that TUT had submitted on damage caused by pigeons on sunflower. He said a literature study had been included as part of the project proposal, and that the OAC and the Research Priority Committee had recommended that funding be provided for the literature study only, as a starting point.

      The Chairperson reported that the literature study had since been finalised, and noted that the table of contents, the abstract and the conclusion and recommendations had been included with the documentation as Annexure F. He said the literature study would be presented to GrainSA for peer evaluation. He mentioned that the project proposal would be reconsidered, following on GrainSA's comments on the literature study.

      Noted:

      1. That feedback on the matter of pigeon damage to sunflower will be provided as and when available.

        Members

    3. Research projects 2010/2011 Financial year

      (Resolutions 9.4.1 and 9.4.2 of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum minutes of 24 November 2009)

      Cognisance was taken of the list of approved research projects for 2010/2011 and the management summaries thereof, as well as the list of projects that were still under consideration. The Chairperson provided a brief overview of the various projects. Mr Kok asked whether it would be possible to provide information on the funding approved for each project, so that clarity could be obtained on the funding provided for the various industries. The Chairperson mentioned that Mr Kok could approach Mr Keun for the relevant information.

  9. Additional matters

    1. Information days

      None reported.

    2. Articles

      Cognisance was taken of the articles "Suid-Amerika begin met uitvoere van rekord soja-oeste", "Sojaboonsaad: waarna moet 'n mens kyk?", "Nuwe SA rekord: sojaboonoes groter as sonneblomoes" and "Noordelike Halfrond – produksietoestande bepaal pryse".

    3. Sunflower Week in Review

      (Resolutions 9.7.1 to 9.7.3 of the Sunflower and Soybean minutes of 24 November 2009)

      Cognisance was taken of the article "Pheasant damage in emerging sunflowers", as published in the September 2009 issue of Sunflower Week in Review. Cognisance was also taken of the research priorities set by the NSA Research Committee in 2009, as well as the information on the National Sclerotinia Initiative, that is situated in Fargo, North Dakota.

    4. Soybean DNA

      Cognisance was taken of the news release "DNA sojaboon blijkt veelbelovend".

    5. Import and export of GM commodities

      Cognisance was taken of the letter circulated by the Directorate Biosafety of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries on the South African requirements for the import and export of GM commodities for food, feed and processing. Dr van der Walt asked what quantity of local soybeans was exported in the raw grain form. The Chairperson replied that all local soybean exports were in an unprocessed form.

    6. Website

      Mr Keun invited members to provide contributions to the webpage of the oilseeds industry.

    7. Attendance of SAGL strategic planning session

      The Chairperson reported that he had attended the South African Grain Laboratory's (SAGL) strategic planning session. He said he considered the session to be interesting and stimulating, and lauded SAGL for the initiative shown. He invited Ms Louw to inform the members of the Forum when SAGL had considered the inputs at the session, and had decided on the way forward. He urged the members to avail themselves of the high quality services offered by SAGL.

    8. New labelling regulations, with specific reference to oils

      Dr van Twisk urged suppliers of oil to take cognisance of the new labelling regulations, that was published in the Government Gazette, vol 537, no 32975 of 1 March 2010. He said these regulations will come into force on 1 March 2011.

      Dr van Twisk said in terms of the regulations, the class names of the ingoing oils, viz. vegetable, animal, fish or marine, had to be indicated on the label. He added that the type of vegetable oil also had to be noted, and if it were a mixture of oils, the contents had to be listed in decreasing order of the amount in that oil. He said in the case of vegetable fats and oils, the particular part of the plant from which it was sourced had to be be included on the label. He mentioned that the percentage of olive oil had to be indicated in olive oil blends.

      Dr van der Walt said the National Consumer Union could assist in the event of queries on the matter. The Chairperson ruled that the matter of the new labelling regulations, with specific reference to oils, be referred to the Oilseeds Advisory Committee and the Research Priority Committee. He said members will be kept informed.

      Resolved:

      1. That the matter of the new labelling regulations, with specific reference to oils, be referred to the Oilseeds Advisory Committee and the Research Priority Committee.

        Mr Keun

    9. Promotion of sunflower oil

      Mr Pretorius expressed his concern that local sunflower production had drastically decreased. He noted that this had far reaching effects. He mentioned that the generic promotion of sunflowers had been neglected in the recent past. He said the oilseeds industry had a responsibility to the sunflower industry, and should investigate the possibility of launching a generic promotion campaign for sunflower oil. The Chairperson ruled that the matter be referred to the Oilseeds Advisory Committee.

      Resolved:

      1. That the matter regarding the possibility of launching a generic promotion campaign for sunflower oil be referred to the Oilseeds Advisory Committee.

        Mr Keun

  10. Dates of meetings

    The date of the last meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum for 2010 was confirmed as:

    • 22 November 2010
  11. 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 12:45.