OPDT   OIL & PROTEIN SEEDS DEVELOPMENT TRUST
OAC   OILSEEDS ADVISORY COMMITTEE

OPDT
OIL & PROTEIN SEEDS DEVELOPMENT TRUST

OAC
OILSEEDS ADVISORY COMMITTEE

Working Group Minutes

Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum
held on 28 November 2016 at 10h00 at the offices of the Oilseeds Industry, 49 River Road, Woodmead

  1. Opening

    Mr Louis Verhoef opened the meeting with a prayer.

  2. Welcome

    The Chairperson, Mr GJH Scholtemeijer welcomed all present to the meeting. He in particular welcomed the delegation from LEAF Services and Mr Jacques van Niekerk, from Epko Oilseed Crushing.

  3. Attendance

    Present

    Mr GJH Scholtemeijer Chairperson
    Mr J Botma
    Dr E Briedenhann
    Mr W Cronjé
    Ms A de Beer
    Dr J Dreyer
    Dr L du Plessis
    Mr N Hawkins
    Mr C Joubert
    Mnr G Keun CEO
    Dr S Lamprecht
    Mr C Louw
    Ms W Louw
    Mr Z Makhaye
    Ms NN Mnqeta
    Mr T Prinsloo
    Ms M Scheepers
    Dr D Strydom
    Dr W van der Walt
    Mr J van Niekerk
    Mr A van Vuuren
    Mr L Verhoef

    Apologies

    Ms M Purnell
    Mr C Sturgess
  4. Personalia

    A moment of silence was observed in honour of Dr Pieter van Twisk, who had passed away. Dr van der Walt was congratulated on his birthday on 25 November.

  5. Confirmation of the agenda

    The agenda was accepted as it stood.

  6. Approval of minutes

    1. Approval of the minutes of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum held on 2 November 2015

      Noted:

      1. That the minutes of the meeting of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum be accepted as a true and fair reflection of that meeting, and be referred to the OPDT website for publication.
  7. Matters arising

    1. Marketing aspects

      1. Crop Estimates

        The Chairperson called on Ms Scheepers to comment on the crop estimates.

        Ms Scheepers said the producers' estimates to plant summer crops in 2016-2017 were released on 26 October, while the latest estimates will be released in January 2017.

        With regard to the 2015-2016 production season, Ms Scheepers reported that the final production estimate of soybeans was 741 550 tons, which was the fourth largest crop on record. She said this was 21% more than the ten year average crop, 11% more than the five year average crop, and 21% less than the three year average crop. She noted that 1,47 tons of soybeans had been produced per hectare in the 2015-2016 production season, which was 6% less than the previous year.

        Ms Scheepers said according to the producers' intentions, more soybeans would be planted in Mpumalanga and the Free State, while less would be planted in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.

        With reference to sunflower, Ms Scheepers reported that 755 000 tons of sunflower had been produced in 2015-2016, which was 92 000 tons more than the production estimate of the previous production season. She said this was 18% more than the ten year average crop, 9,9% more than the five year average crop, and 10,4% more than the three year average crop. She noted that 1,05 tons of sunflower had been produced per hectare in the 2015-2016 production season, which was 9% less than the previous year.

        Ms Scheepers said according to the 2016-2017 producers' intentions, sunflower hectares would decrease by 7% compared to 2015-2016.

        Mr van Vuuren asked whether it would be possible for the Crop Estimates Committee (CEC) to look at long-term trends in soybean and sunflower production per hectare. He said he would be curious to determine whether technology had indeed advanced over time.

        Noted:

        1. That feedback is awaited on long-term trends in soybean and sunflower production per hectare in South Africa.

          Ms Scheepers
          SSSF

      2. SAGIS

        Mr Hawkins presented an overview of the national and international supply and demand situation of soybeans and sunflower, as well as 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 markets. Cognisance was taken that this and other data could be accessed on the SAGIS website (www.sagis.org.za).

        Cognisance was taken of the latest editions of the SAGIS Weekly Bulletin and the SAGIS Monthly Bulletin.

      3. Supply and Demand Estimates Committee (SDEC)

        Cognisance was taken of the latest supply and demand estimates data, as compiled by the SDEC.

        Mr Joubert reported that approximately 1 000 users visited the SDEC website daily. He said concerns had been raised about the information provided to the SDEC, and added that a working committee had been established to look at the possibility of implementing statutory measures with regard to the provision of information to the SDEC.

        Dr Briedenhann said he considered the information compiled by the SDEC to be very useful for the industry.

  8. Producer matters

    The Chairperson said while producer matters were usually dealt with on a per province basis, he would, due to time constraints, suggest that a general overview rather be given of the situation in the field, as it currently stood.

    Mr van Vuuren reported that producers in the Northwest had progressed well with soil preparation, and that planting had already commenced in some areas. He said it seemed as if soybean and sunflower plantings would be more or less the same as the previous year.

    Mr Prinsloo remarked that some areas in the far west were still suffering from very dry conditions.

    Mr Botma reported that the rains had arrived in his production area about two weeks earlier than it had the previous year. He said there were, however, still some dry areas to the west of the Free State. He reported that soybean and sunflower plantings had decreased, with significantly more maize having been planted.

    Mr Louw said planting in Mpumalanga was progressing very well, while producers in the eastern parts of the Free State had planted about 70% of their soybeans. He mentioned that reports indicated that more sunflower had been planted than in the previous year, in the northwestern part of the Free State.

  9. Research

    1. Sunflower

      1. Sunflower value chain study

        (Resolution 9.1.2.1 of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum minutes of 2 November 2015 and resolution 8.1.1.1.2 of the Oilseeds Advisory Committee minutes of 10 February 2016)

        Cognisance was taken of the summary of the final report on the Sunflower value chain study, December 2013 to January 2015.

        The Chairperson ruled that the resolution on Bellis be held in abeyance.

        Resolution:

        1. That feedback is awaited on BASF's fungicide Bellis.

          SSSF

      2. National Sunflower Cultivar Evaluation Report 2016-2017

        Cognisance was taken of the National Sunflower Cultivar Evluation Report, 2016-2017.

      3. Grading Dispensation: Sunflower

        Cognisance was taken of the regulations relating to the grading, packaging and marking of sunflower seed intended for sale in the Republic of South Africa, that had been published in the Government Gazette of 22 January 2016.

    2. Soybeans

      1. National Soybean Cultivar Evaluation Report 2016-2017

        Cognisance was taken of the soybean cultivar recommendations for 2016-2017.

      2. Soybean rust

        Cognisance was taken that soybean rust infection had not been reported during the past year.

      3. Grading dispensation: Soybeans

        Cognisance was taken of the document titled "Industry wide dispensation – the use of a 1,8mm slotted sieve and the 4,75mm round hole sieve during the grading of soybeans".

      4. Mercosur agreement: soybean meal duty

        Cognisance was taken of the SARS document relating to the tariff amendments with regard to soybean meal.

      5. South African Cultivar and Technology Agency (SACTA)

        The Chairperson reported that SACTA had indicated that that body was, in terms of its Memorandum of Incorporation (MOI), not in a position to decide on the utilisation of funds collected. He said the Oilseeds Industry would comment on the matter, as soon as the Industry had been provided with a copy of that MOI.

        Mr Louw said the intention was to implement the levy on soybean seed in the new marketing year. He said the issue at hand was whether or not to proceed with the application. He noted that the process would be impeded, if the application was not supported by the Forum.

        The Chairperson said the matter would be discussed at the January meeting of the Research Priority Committee. He noted that the Oilseeds Industry, who provided funding of R1 million per annum to the soybean cultivar trials, was concerned that the seed companies, who were the benefactors of monies collected by SACTA, did not make any contribution to the funding of the soybean cultivar evaluation trials. He said soybean producers would have to indicate whether or not they valued the results of the national soybean cultivar evaluation trials.

        Mr Louw said as far as he was concerned, the process should not be delayed unnecessarily. He suggested that the Forum decide in principle whether or not the application should be progressed, once clarity had been reached on the continuation of the soybean cultivar evaluation trials.

        The Chairperson said the Oilseeds Industry would revert once a copy of the MOI had been received and discussed.

      6. Funding of research projects

        (Resolution 12.2.1 of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum minutes of 2 November 2015)

        Cognisance was taken of the list of research projects that had been approved for the 2017-2018 financial year.

  10. Seed

    The matter was not discussed.

  11. Technology transfer

    1. Information days 2017

      None reported.

    2. Sunflower Symposium 2017

      Mr Keun reported that it had been resolved not to present a Sunflower Symposium during 2017, but that alternative ways of effecting technology transfer would rather be considered. He said the matter still had to be actioned.

    3. Oilseeds Focus

      Cognisance was taken of the latest edition of the Oilseeds Focus.

  12. Soyfood

    No report back.

  13. Additional matters

    1. Articles

      Cognisance was taken of the articles included as Annexure N.

    2. Sunflower Highlights

      Cognisance was taken of the various editions of the Sunflower Highlights included as Annexure O.

    3. Application for statutory measures

      (Resolution 13.4.1 of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum minutes of 2 November 2015)

      Cognisance was taken that the statutory measures for the soybean, sunflower and groundnut industries came into effect on 14 October 2016.

    4. Presentation: "The role of seedling diseases in poor establishment of sunflower in South Africa", Dr SC Lamprecht

      (Resolution 8.6.2 of the Research Priority Committee minutes of 19 September 2016)

      The Chairperson called on Dr Lamprecht to inform the members on progress made with her research project on the role of seedling diseases in the poor establishment of sunflower in South Africa.

      Dr Lamprecht noted that poor establishment has been identified as one of the major contraints in sunflower production in South Africa. She said according to an article published in 2010, seedling vigour, plant depth, seedbed preparation and soil temperature were considered to be the main causes of poor establishment. She noted that no mention was made of seedling diseases, probably because information on this issue was virtually nonexistent in South Africa. She said research had however been done in other countries, where information on root rot, damping off, seedling rot and so forth could be found in the literature. She mentioned that these were caused by pathogens such as Macrophomina, Pythiums and the like.

      Dr Lamprecht said with sunflower being planted in rotation with maize and soybeans, which were susceptible to those pathogens, it was inevitable that sunflower would be affected in some way. She noted that this had prompted her research.

      Dr Lamprecht reported that the research was done in both field trials and farms in the major production areas. She said 17 localities had been sampled. She provided information on the cultivars that had been planted, where treated and untreated seed had been used, and on the crops previously planted on the fields.

      Dr Lamprecht provided detail of the data that had thus far been collected, and on the observations that had been made. She said the main focus would now be to clearly define the main complex that is involved in seedling diseases of sunflower, and how the issue could be resolved.

      The Chairperson thanked Dr Lamprecht for an informative presentation.

    5. GFADA

      The Chairperson reported that the Oilseeds Advisory Committee had become an official member of GFADA.

    6. World Soybean Congress X (WSRC X)

      Cognisance was taken that the WSRC X will be presented from 10 to 15 September 2017, in Savannah, Georgia.

    7. Task Team: Transformation levy

      Mr Keun said the issue was considered to be an industry matter. He noted that feedback would be given in due time.

      Noted:

      1. That feedback is awaited on the Task Team: Transformation levy.

        Mr Keun
        SSSF

    8. LEAF Presentation

      The Chairperson called on Ms Mnqeta to present LEAF Services' case to the Forum.

      Ms Mnqeta informed the members that LEAF Services is an assignee of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) in terms of Section 2(3) (a) of the Agricultural Products Standards Act (APS Act), 119 of 1990, with the view to doing quality assurance for certain agricultural products. She said LEAF Services is responsible for the enforcement of Sections 3(1) (a) and (b), 3(1), 4(A)(1)(a), 7 and 8 of the APS Act. She mentioned that LEAF Services' appointment had been gazetted as per notice 345 of 2016, as published in Government Notice 40075 of 17 June 2016. She noted that LEAF Services, as DAFF's assignee, would charge a tariff for services rendered. She said the fees are to be charged in terms of Section 3(1A) op the APS Act, which states that "fees may be charged in respect of powers exercised and duties perfomed by the assignee", and that the owner of the product in question would have to pay those fees.

      Ms Mnqeta said LEAF Services' proposal was that the consignments be released at the ports, and that the inspection be done at the owner of the product's premises. She noted that DAFF expected that 100% of the grains be inspected. She said the proposal was that the inspections instead be done on a weekly basis, with the view to saving costs. She noted that a fee of R285 would be charged per hour. She said the Forum was requested to collaborate, by providing access to information pertaining to processing plants; and also for LEAF Services to have access to the inspection infrastructure.

      The Chairperson opened the matter for discussion. Mr Keun said as far as oilseeds were concerned, consultation had only been done with the groundnuts industry. He noted that a workshop would be presented the next day, specifically with regard to winter grains and maize. He said the Forum could not identify the parties where inspections were to be done.

      The Chairperson asked who would be responsible for the travelling costs incurred by the inspections. Ms Mnqeta explained that those costs would be for the client.

      Dr Briedenhann noted that all the relevant companies handled their own quality control. He asked whether information on that which had already be done could not be requested, instead of work being duplicated. Ms Mnqeta said DAFF should be requested to answer that question.

      The Chairperson thanked LEAF Services for their presentation. The LEAF delegation were excused from the meeting. Ms Mnqeta thanked the Forum for the opportunity. She said the Forum's feedback would be awaited.

      The Chairperson asked the members of the Forum for input on the way forward. Mr Louw said when GrainSA discussed the matter with DAFF, the matter of grading each consignment was not raised at all. He noted that GrainSA had specifically been concerned about the quality of maize imports. He said since LEAF Services had been appointed, the matter had to be discussed and resolved on Forum level.

      Mr Hawkins suggested that members of the Forum deliver inputs at the workshop, that was planned for the following day. Following on a brief discussion, it was agreed that Messrs Hawkins, Louw, Dr Strydom and Ms Louw would raise the Oilseeds Industry's concerns on LEAF Services' proposal at the workshop.

      Noted:

      1. That Messrs Hawkins, Louw, Dr Strydom and Ms Louw would raise the Oilseeds Industry's concerns on LEAF Services' proposal at the 29 November workshop.

        Messrs Hawkins, Louw
        Dr Strydom, Ms Louw
        SSSF

  14. Election of office bearers

    1. Election of Chairperson

      Mr Keun said the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson were elected in alternate years, and were elected for a term of two years. He said the Vice Chairperson had been elected the previous year. He called for nominations for the position of Chairperson.

      Mr GJH Scholtemeijer was unanimously re-elected as Chairperson of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum.

      Resolved:

      1. That Mr GJH Scholtemeijer be unanimously re-elected as Chairperson of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soybean Food Forum.

        Mr Scholtemeijer
        SSSF

  15. Date of next meeting

    Cognisance was taken that the next meeting will be held on 21 February 2017.

  16. Adjournment

    The Chairperson thanked the members for their contributions. There being no further matters for discussion, the meeting was adjourned.