Working Group Minutes / Archives / Soy / 23 October 2013

Minutes

Soybean working group and Sunflower and Soybean Forum (SSF)

joint meeting held on 23 October 2013 at 10:00, at the offices of the Protein Research Foundation, 49 River Road, Woodmead



  1. Opening

    The meeting was opened by a prayer, offered by Mr Frans Potgieter.

  2. Welcome

    The Chairperson, Mr GJH Scholtemeijer, welcomed all to the meeting, with a special word of welcome to Messrs Chris Sturgess, Gerhard Engelbrecht, Jan Grey, John Rankin, Mss Mariana Purnell and Nicolene de Klerk.

  3. Attendance

    Present

    Mr GJH Scholtemeijer Chairperson
    Mr J Botma Producer: Free State
    Mr L Büchner Profert
    Dr P Caldwell University of KwaZulu-Natal
    Ms AS de Beer ARC-GCI
    Mr G de Beer PRF
    Ms N de Klerk ARC-GCI
    Dr J de Kock PRF
    Dr J Dreyer PRF
    Mr CJ du Plessis Producer: KwaZulu-Natal
    Dr L du Plessis PRF Contractor
    Mr J du Preez PRF Contractor
    Mr G Engelbrecht K2Agri
    Mr W Engelbrecht K2Agri
    Mr JP Grey GrainSA
    Mr C Havenga PRF Contractor
    Mr NJ Hawkins SAGIS
    Mr M Janse van Rensburg Dept Agric Mpumalanga
    Mr C Joubert NAMC
    Mr G Keun OPDT / PRF Chief Executive Officer
    Mr D Kok AFMA
    Mr CJ Louw GrainSA
    Ms W Louw SAGL
    Ms C Mapatlare DAFF
    Dr A Nel ARC-GCI
    Mr FAS Potgieter PRF
    Mr T Prinsloo ARC-GCI
    Ms M Purnell GSI
    Mr J Rankin GrainSA
    Ms M Scheepers DAFF
    Dr D Strydom UFS
    Mr C Sturgess JSE Commodities
    Dr Y Tewoldemedhin ARC-NIPP
    Ms J Tshupe OAC
    Dr W van der Walt OAC
    Mr C van Rooyen Landbouweekblad
    Dr P van Twisk PvT Consultants
    Mr AJ van Vuuren NWK
    Mr W van Wyk PRF Contractor
    Mr APG van Zyl Producer: Orange River Scheme
    Mr L Verhoef Agratech Trade
    Ms E Harmse OPDT / PRF Contractor

    Apologies

    Mr D Boshoff AFMA
    Dr E Briedenhann OAC / PRF
    Mr H Conradie Producer: Mpumalanga
    Mr W Cronjé OAC
    Prof D Fourie North West University
    Mr J Henning University of the Free State
    Dr N Kotze Agricol
    Dr SC Lamprecht ARC-NIPP
    Dr W Otto Sensako
    Mr G Roos Producer: Mpumalanga
    Dr G Thompson ARC-GCI
    Dr C van der Merwe Suidweslandbou
    Mr D van der Westhuizen Producer: Mpumalanga
    Dr S Ybema NWK

  4. Personalia

    Mr Wessel van Wyk was honoured with a ten year long service award.

  5. Confirmation of agenda

    The agenda was accepted as it stood, with the addition of:
    Item 13.14    Article on vegetable oils, Drs Du Plessis and Van Twisk

  6. Approval of minutes

    1. Approval of the minutes of the Special Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and the Soybean Working Group, held on 24 July 2013; and referral to webpage

      Resolved:

      1. That the minutes of the Special Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and the Soybean Working Group, that was held on 24 July 2013, be accepted as a true and fair reflection of that meeting.
      2. That the minutes of the Special Combined Meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum and the Soybean Working Group, that was held on 24 July 2013 2013, be referred to the website of the Protein Research Foundation, for publication.

  7. General overview

    1. Crop estimates

      The Chairperson tabled the documents reflecting the final production estimate of summer crops for 2013, as well as the summary document that had been prepared for the meeting, and called on Ms Scheepers to comment.

      Ms Scheepers said according to the final production estimate, an area of 516 500 hectares had been planted to soybeans, with a production forecast of 787 100 tons. She noted that she had compiled a table, in which the area planted to soybeans in the various provinces, as well as the soybean production estimates for the various provinces in the production seasons 2012 and 2013 respect­ively were reflected. She said the area planted to soybean had increased with 44 500 hectares, while production had increased with 137 100 tons, with soybean production showing the biggest increase in the Free State and Mpumalanga. She said while the area planted to soybeans in the North West Province had increased with 1 000 hectares, production had been hit hard by the drought that area had suffered, with 13 900 fewer tons having been produced.

      Ms Scheepers said the first production forecast of 914 350 tons had to be adjusted downwards during the course of the season, as the effects of the drought manifested itself. She noted that the forecast had been adjusted downward to 851 000 tons in March, to 825 600 tons in May, to 802 250 tons in June, and finally to 787 100 tons in July.

      Ms Scheepers also provided a visual overview of soybeans planted per magisterial district in the Free State and Mpumalanga, respectively.

      Dr De Kock said he had been under the impression that quite a large area in the Northwest Province was under irrigation, with the result that he considered the effect that the drought had had on soybean production to be quite alarming. Mr van Vuuren explained that maize production in the NWK's area had decreased to an average of 1,5 tons per hectare, which lent some perspective to the soybean scenario.

      Ms Scheepers reported that she had handled the sunflower data in the same way as she had handled the soybean data. She noted that the drought had also impacted negatively on sunflower production, with the initial forecast of 624 210 tons having been adjusted downward twice, upward twice, and finally adjusted downward to 566 600 tons.

      Ms Scheepers remarked that the Free State was the largest sunflower producing province in South Africa. She noted that sunflower production in the Free State had increased from 247 000 tons in 2012 to 297 000 tons in 2013, on 190 000 hectares and 220 000 hectares, respectively.

      Ms Scheepers also provided a visual overview of sunflower planted per magisterial district in the Free State and North West, respectively.

      In response to a question by the Chairperson, Mr Rankin remarked that he was not aware of producers who focused only on sun­flowers, and added that Mr Gert Pretorius was the last producer he was aware of who specialised in sunflower production. He said most producers practiced crop rotation. Mr Botma agreed with this, and said producers in the Free State mainly rotated maize and sunflower, and more recently maize and groundnuts or soybeans. Mr Büchner reported that wheat production under irrigation was on the increase in the western production areas.

      Ms Scheepers reported that the Crop Estimates Committee (CEC) intended to announce the producers' intentions to plant soybeans and sunflowers in the 2013-2014 production season the following day. She said the first indications were that the area planted to soybeans will decrease slightly to 500 000 hectares, while the area planted to sunflower will increase significantly to between 600 000 and 630 000 hectares.

      Mr Grey remarked that the eastern part of Mpumalanga offered huge potential for sunflower production, but added that the incidence of Sclerotinia and pigeon damage had severely impacted on sunflower hectares in that area. He said these factors had contributed to an increase in soybean production.

      In response to a question by Dr De Kock, Ms Scheepers said the CEC did not have information on the number of soybean producers in South Africa. She said she would revert on the matter.

      Noted:

      1. That feedback was being awaited on the number of South African soybean producers.

        Ms Scheepers
        Soybean Working Group


    2. SAGIS


      (Resolution 7.2.1 of the Combined Meeting minutes of 2 May 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 website address www.sagis.org.za.

      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 improve and to bring more information to the table. He said SAGIS held a lot of basic data that could be exploited further.

      Dr Van Twisk asked whether projections of the future situation with regard to food security were available. The Chairperson explained that SAGIS collected historical data only.

      Cognisance was taken of the SAGIS Monthly Bulletin dated 23 September 2013, and the SAGIS Weekly Bulletin dated 3 October 2013.

    3. Targets – 2020

      The Chairperson mentioned that the Board of the PRF had agreed on a target of 1 million tons of soybeans on 500 000 hectares by 2015, and a target of an average yield of 2,5 ton soybeans per hectare on one million hectares by 2020.

    4. Weather forecast

      Mr Botma presented a graphic overview of the expected cloud formation and the development of weather patterns during the follow­ing month.

    5. Oilseeds information


      (Resolution 7.5.1 of the Joint Meeting minutes of 2 May 2013)

      The Chairperson said the Oilseeds Industry had resolved some time ago that information on sunflower, soybean and groundnut pro­duction would be published regularly. He mentioned that various ideas had been mooted, and added that the process was ongoing.

  8. Market information

    1. Local and international soybean prices

      The Chairperson noted that Dr Briedenhann had calculated the derived producer price for soybeans as R5 605, on 7 October 2013.

    2. Local and international sunflower prices

      No report back.

  9. Producer matters

    1. Soybeans

      1. KwaZulu-Natal

        1. General

          The Chairperson noted that 34 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in 2012, and 32 000 in 2013. He asked if this hectarage would vary much.

          Mr du Plessis said soybean production in KwaZulu-Natal had stabilised on one third of crop rotation systems, and that any variation on this would be dictated by price. He reported that insurance premiums had increased dramatically as a result of the prevalence of hail in the province.

          Mr du Plessis reported that soybean seed had been sold out in that province. He said he expected the area planted to soybeans to stay the same, or to show a slight increase.

        2. Soybean Yield Competition

          Mr du Plessis said the idea was to expand the soybean yield competition to other soybean production areas in the country, as soon as various teething problems had been sorted out at KwaZulu-Natal level. He mentioned that the ten producers from Dundee who had taken part in the competition during the previous season, had attained an average yield of 3,3 tons per hectare. He said the winning producer had harvested 4,5 tons per hectare.

          Mr du Plessis reported that six producers from the Bergville/Winterton area had entered the competition, where an average yield of 4,1 tons per hectare was produced. He said the top producer's average yield per hectare stood at 4,65 tons per hectare.

          Mr du Plessis said the intention was to approach the Board of the PRF with the view to publishing competition entry forms on the website, so that the competitors could complete the forms online. The Chairperson suggested that this matter be referred to the PRF's Marketing Committee.

          Mr du Plessis called on the seed and chemical companies to get involved in the competition. He said those companies could for example provide guidance on production practices, while getting some mileage out of their involvement. He mentioned that the idea was to stimulate producers to think creatively, so as to maximise yields. He noted that a target of 6,7 tons per hectare had been set, which was on par with international yield competition targets.

          Mr du Plessis noted that farmers' days would be presented on the winners' farms in the Bergville and Normandien areas, the dates of which would be determined at a later stage. He said the agreement was that winning producers would present a farmers' day on their farms the following year.

          Resolved:

          1. That permission would be sought to publish soybean yield competition entry forms on the PRF's website, so that the competitors could complete the forms online.

            Mr Keun
            Marketing Committee
            Soybean Working Group

          2. That farmer's days would be presented on the winners' farms in the Bergville and Normandien areas, the dates of which would be determined at a later stage.

            Mr Keun
            Mr Du Plessis
            Soybean Working Group


      2. Mpumalanga and Gauteng

        1. General

          The Chairperson noted that 200 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in 2012, and 205 000 in 2013. He asked whether an increase in soy production was expected in that area.

          Mr Grey said as far as he was concerned, soybean production would increase in Mpumalanga, as part of the trend toward conservation agriculture in that province. He said crop rotation formed an inherent part of conservation agriculture, and added that soybeans lent itself extremely well to crop rotation systems. He added that producers were excited by the additional crushing capacity that had already been commissioned, as well as that which was due to come on line in the near future.

          Mr van Wyk said in his view, the area planted to soybeans in Gauteng would not increase.

      3. North West and Limpopo Province

        1. General

          Cognisance was taken that 21 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in North West in 2012, and 22 000 hectares in 2013, while 22 000 hectares had been planted in Limpopo in 2012, and 20 000 hectares in 2013.

          Mr Büchner reported that producers in the North West were hesitant to produce soybeans, due to the erratic rainfall patterns and the high number of heat units in that area.

          Mr Rankin noted that producers were increasingly moving towards conservation agriculture practices in the North West, and added that soybeans fit in well in such practices. He said as far as he was concerned, soybean production would definitely increase in that area in the longer term. He added that he expected sunflower production to increase in the short term.

          Mr van Vuuren said he agreed with Mr Rankin, as interest in conservation agriculture was dramatically increasing in the North West. He noted that crop rotation was part and parcel of conservation agriculture, and that soybeans offered much value as a rotation crop. He said soybean was the only legume that could be planted in the Lichtenburg/Koster area, while groundnuts offered possibilities in the areas further to the west.

          Dr Strydom said sunflower crops had, in many instances, been the saving grace for producers during the drought, and that producers would for this reason probably carry on with sunflower production. He said producers were in addition expe­riencing problems with credit applications, and would probably decide in favour of sunflower production, as they would need top up finance only, that would limit production costs. He however added that the healthy prices that soybeans had realised during the past two months might cause producers to reconsider their options.

          Mr Potgieter said in his view soybean production in Limpopo would remain at the same levels.

      4. Free State

        1. General

          The Chairperson noted that 175 000 hectares had been planted to soybeans in the Free State in 2012, as opposed to the 215 000 hectares that had been planted in 2013. He said the ratio between maize and soybean plantings in that province was still very low.

          Mr Botma said according to reports, it was expected that soybean plantings in the eastern part of the province would in­crease significantly, with decreased plantings in the drier western parts of the province. He reported that root-knot nema­todes had resulted in decreased soybean plantings, especially in the deeper sandy soils. He said if a solution could be found for nematode infestation in those soils, soybean production would definitely increase.

      5. Eastern Cape, Northern Cape and Southwestern Districts

        1. General

          Cognisance was taken that 500 hectares had been planted to soybeans in the Northern Cape in 2012, and 2 000 hectares in 2013.

          Mr van Zyl said he did not believe soybean production in the Northern Cape would increase much in the coming production season. He mentioned that some producers needed to be informed on the fact that soybean was a cash crop in its own right, and was not only included in a crop rotation system because of its beneficial effects on the soil. He said he believed soybean production in the Northern Cape would increase systematically.

          Mr Potgieter said one developed a gut feel for the soybean industry over the years, and added that he suspected that many producers were very unsure about what crops to plant in the coming season. He mentioned that the economics of soybeans weighed heavily in its favour, which led him to believe that the CEC's estimate of producers' intentions to plant could very well not be considered to be indicative of those crops that would eventually be planted. He however added that other factors also had to be taken into consideration, of which the weather in the western half of the country was of primary importance.

          Mr Willem Engelbrecht said in his view, soybean production in KwaZulu-Natal would not increase, while production could very well increase in Mpumalanga and especially in Gauteng, in areas such as Delmas, Bronkhorstspruit, Springs and Nigel. He noted that the eastern part of the Free State offered much potential, especially in areas such as Warden, Harrismith and Reitz. He said he did not believe that soybean production would increase in the areas west of Koster, in the North West. He noted that production in Limpopo would remain stable, as most crops were produced under irrigation in that province, while production in the Northern Cape was expected to increase.

        2. Nematodes: Feedback

          (Resolutions 9.1.5.1.1 and 9.1.5.1.2 of the Combined Meeting of 24 July 2013)

          The Chairperson called on Mr van Zyl to provide feedback on the infestation of root-knot nematodes on a portion of his farm.

          Mr van Zyl mentioned that he had been monitoring the infestation since he had implemented conservation agriculture practices. He said although the root-knot nematode population had definitely decreased, he could not provide scientific proof that the decrease had resulted from conservation agriculture.

          Mr van Zyl said he had previously mentioned that he had subsequently rented out a piece of his land to a tenant, who had burnt and ploughed some fields, that had resulted in an infestation of root-knot nematodes. He noted that he had informed Dr Dreyer that nematodes were the biggest obstacle to soybean production in the Orange River Scheme area, and most probably also in other soybean production areas.

          Dr Dreyer mentioned that the issue of root-knot nematodes could very well be the focus area of the next SciTech meeting of the Soybean Working Group, that would be presented in July 2014. He said root-knot nematodes presented serious problems in the western production areas.

          Mr Willem Engelbrecht said the Argentinian seed company, Nidera, ran a breeding program specifically aimed at selecting for resistance or tolerance to root-knot nematodes.

    2. Sunflowers

      1. KwaZulu-Natal, Western and Eastern Cape

        No report back.

      2. Mpumalanga and Gauteng

        No report back.

      3. North West and Limpopo

        No report back.

      4. Free State

        No report back.

      5. General

        No report back.

  10. Research

    1. Soybeans

      1. National Cultivar Trials 2012-2013 and 2013-2014

        Ms de Beer reported that 27 entries had been planted in 24 trials at 23 localities in the 2012-2013 production season. She said six seed companies had taken part in the trials, and that seven companies would participate in the 2013-2014 trials. She noted that the cultivar recommendations would be distributed during the following week.

        Ms de Beer said nine of the 24 trials planted during the 2012-2013 season had to be written off, due to, amongst others, drought and Roundup Ready damage.

        Ms De Beer said 24 trials would be planted at 23 localities with 31 entries during 2013-2014. She noted that the trials at Queenstown and Sutherland had not yet been included, as feedback on their inclusion was still being awaited. She said two localities in the western production areas are to be planted, with the location at Belfast being moved to Hoopstad and the location at Bothaville being moved to a location between Delareyville and Glaudina.

        Ms de Beer reported that planting would commence during the following week, depending on the rain.

      2. Rust

        1. Rust trap crops

          Mr de Beer reported that rust trap crop trials would be planted at ten localities during the coming season. He said the trials would be checked for rust infection from the second week of January.

      3. Sclerotinia

        1. Sclerotinia planning 2012-2013 and 2013-2014

          (Resolution 10.1.3.1.1 of the Joint Meeting minutes of 24 July 2013)

          Cognisance was taken of the document "Brief overview synthesized from presentation abstracts, a few Powerpoints and reports delivered during the USDA-ARS National Sclerotinia Initiative 2013 Annual Meeting, USA, 23-25 January 2013", as compiled by Dr van der Walt.

          Dr van der Walt said it would take some time to include those Sclerotinia resistance genes that had been identified in wild species in breeding programs, and that a solution to the problem of Sclerotinia was not in the offing as yet.

          Dr van der Walt said the best thing to do would be to maintain contact with the various breeding institutions, universities and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) with the view to evaluating resistant or tolerant lines locally.

      4. Rhizobium – Feedback


        (Items 15, 17 and 20 of the Combined Meeting minutes of 24 July 2013)

        Cognisance was taken of the presentations "Rhizobium fokus", "Rhizobium stamme en aksies" and "Agricultural remedies – registration procedures", that had been included with the documentation as Annexure E.

        The Chairperson said the Oilseeds Industry had provided funding for a research project titled "Why does inoculation of soy­beans sometimes fail? A survey of the quality of locally produced inoculants, their use and possible remediation", at the request of GrainSA. He said GrainSA's request had followed on complaints from producers on the efficacy of inoculants sold locally, and added that it had been reported that not only WB74, the recommended strain for use in inoculants, but also other strains, were being used in inoculants. He however added that the use of the WB74 strain was not regulated by Act 36 of 1947, and that the intention was to further discuss the matter with Drs Hassen, Rong and Venter of the ARC-NIPP.

        Dr de Kock said Dr Hassen had submitted a new project proposal, which involved a Bradyrhizobium strain compatability study for the selection of highly competitive nodulating and nitrogen fixing strains across different soybean cultivars in South Africa. He said the proposal was still under consideration, and added that the proposal will be considered after the meeting with Drs Hassen, Rong and Venter.

        Mr Louw reported that one of the requirements for registration of Rhizobium inoculants was that it had to include a known and recommended strain. He said Microbial Solutions had informed him that the strain they used had been registered.

        Noted:

        1. That feedback is being awaited on the discussion between the OAC, PRF and Drs Hassen, Rong and Venter of the ARC-NIPP on the issue of regulating Rhizobium inoculants distributed locally.

          Chairperson
          Soybean Working Group


      5. Biofuels

        Cognisance was taken of Dr du Plessis' report titled "Nuusberigte en tendense in die bio-brandstof en oliesadebedryf, Derde Kwartaal, 1 Julie 2013 tot 30 September 2013".

        The Chairperson said the PRF's interest in biofuels related to the protein value of the byproducts produced in the process, with the view to the use of those byproducts in animal feed.

        Dr du Plessis reported that the Government had set 1 October 2015 as the date that the mandatory blending of biodiesel and bioethanol is to be implemented.

      6. Topics for web searches

        The Chairperson invited the members to submit topics for web searches.

      7. Soybean Fertilisers


        (Item 16 of the Combined Meeting minutes of 24 July 2013)

        Cognisance was taken of the presentation "Sojaboonbemesting", included as Annexure G, that had been delivered at the July SciTech meeting.

    2. Sunflower

      1. Sclerotinia

        Dr de Kock reported that he was not aware of any current local research on Sclerotinia on sunflower.

      2. Sunflower value chain study

        Mr Keun reported that the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy's (BFAP) study on the sunflower value chain would be finalised by the end of October.

        Noted:

        1. That feedback is being awaited of the study on the sunflower value chain.

          Chairperson
          Sunflower and Soybean Forum

  11. Saad

    1. Soybeans

      Mr Engelbrecht reported that more soybean seed, including seed of new cultivars, would be available on the market than the previous year.

      The Chairperson said there would be a shortage of locally produced soybeans to meet the needs created by the additional crushing capacity.

      Mr Louw mentioned that the commissioning of Russell Stone's plant had been somewhat delayed, but added that the plant was now in production. He said Noble's plant in Standerton was close to commissioning, and that it would be interesting to see how matters played out from December to March.

      Mr Louw said it seemed as if close to 200 000 hectares worth of new seed would be available, as opposed to the 160 000 hectares worth that had been available during the last year or so.

      Mr Botma said although producers did retain seed, many producers did this with the view to producing fullfat soybeans with extruders on the farms. He noted that grain was not necessarily retained to use as seed.

      The Chairperson said he had requested Mr Willem Engelbrecht to inform the members on new approaches and new chemistry in the soybean industry at a following meeting. He asked him to briefly inform the members on what he would cover during his presentation.

      Mr Engelbrecht said most of the cultivars distributed locally were sourced from America, Argentina or Brasil. He noted that the world was moving to RR2 cultivars, and that RR-cultivars would not be available in five years or so. He said it was therefore essential to register RR2 locally.

      Noted:

      1. That cognisance be taken that a presentation on new approaches and new chemistry in the soybean industry will be delivered at a following meeting.

        Chairperson
        Soybean Working Group

      1. Seed treatment

        Cognisance was taken of the presentation "The impact of seed treatment and the complexity to develop mixing partners", that had been delivered at the July 2013 SciTech meeting.

    2. Sunflower

      Dr Nel confirmed that only hybrid sunflower seeds were planted, of which grain could not be retained to use as seed. Mr Engelbrecht reported that there was a slight shortage of Clearfield cultivars, but added that sufficient seed would be available of other cultivars. Dr Nel noted that high oleic sunflowers were only planted under contract.

      The Chairperson reported that the Oilseeds Advisory Committee was quite concerned about the current state of the sunflower indus­try. He said at a meeting of roleplayers in the industry, consensus was reached that weak emergence and Sclerotinia were the main problems the sunflower industry had to face.

      The Chairperson continued reporting, and said research project proposals had been submitted on Alternaria and on possible causes of seedling diseases. He added that Dr Flett had done a survey on sunflower diseases, that would be submitted by the end of October. He said in addition to this, the sunflower value chain study may also shed some light on the problems facing the local sunflower industry.

      Mr van Vuuren said in his view Alternaria could not be considered to be a pressing problem at all, as it only presented sporadically.

  12. Tegnology transfer

    1. Information days 2014: Dates, feedback and promotion

      Cognisance was taken of the following dates:

      Soybean Yield Competition Farmers' Day End Jan early Feb 2014
      Soybean Yield Competition Farmers' Day End Jan early Feb 2014
      Pioneer Information Day, Brits 3 February 2014
      Pioneer Information Day, Delmas 4 February 2014
      Pioneer Information Day, Ermelo 5 February 2014
      Pioneer Information Day, Winterton/Bergville 6 February 2014
      Pioneer Information Day, Bethlehem 7 February 2014
      ARC-GCI Farmers' Day 20 February 2014
      No Till Conference, Drakensville 2-4 September 2014

  13. Additional matters

    1. Items for publication on the PRF and oilseeds industries' websites – News snippets and colour photographs

      The Chairperson urged the members to submit news items, colour photographs and videos for publication on the websites of the PRF and the oilseeds industry.

    2. Articles

      Cognisance was taken of the articles included as part of Annexure J.

    3. Speakers at forthcoming meetings of the Soybean Working Group and Sunflower and Soybean Forum


      (Resolution 13.3.1 of the Combined Meeting minutes of 24 July 2013, resolution 10.4.1 of the Technology Committee meeting of 19 June 2013 and resolution 29.3.3 of the PRF Board minutes of 19 and 20 September 2013)

      Cognisance was taken of the list of possible speakers at forthcoming meetings.

      Resolution:

      1. That cognisance be taken of the list of possible speakers at future meetings:
        • Prof Johnnie van den Berg;
        • Prof Driekie Fourie;
        • Prof KJ Kunert;
        • Mr Willem Jonker, Omnia;
        • Mr Antonie Delport, Syngenta;
        • Seed companies – Pannar/Pioneer to be given preference, and
        • Blignaut, CSIR (Climate Change).

        Dr de Kock
        Soybean Working Group


    4. Sunflower Week in Review

      Cognisance was taken of the "2012 US Sunflower Crop Quality report", and of the various editions of The Sunflower, Sunflower Week in Review and Sunflower Highlights, included as Annexure K.

    5. Research on soybeans under irrigation


      (Resolution 13.5.1 of the Combined Meeting minutes of 24 July 2013 and resolution 8.8.1 of the Technology Committee minutes of 14 August 2013)

      The Chairperson ruled that the matter be held in abeyance.

      Noted:

      1. That cognisance be taken that a literature study on soybean production under irrigation was being awaited.

        Dr de Kock
        Soybean Working Group


    6. Merit awards


      (Resolution 13.6.1 of the Combined Meeting minutes of 24 July 2013)

      The Chairperson ruled that the matter be held in abeyance. He said Mr Keun could be approached for information on the various categories in which nominations could be made.

      Noted:

      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
        Soybean Working Group
        Sunflower and Soybean Forum


    7. Quality of South African soybeans


      (Resolution 7.3.4.2.2.5 of the Technology Committee minutes of 19 July 2013 and resolution 8.2.2 of the Technology Committee minutes of 14 August 2013)

      The Chairperson ruled that the matter be held in abeyance.

      Resolution:

      1. That the issue with regard to the quality of locally produced soybeans be referred to the Soybean Working Group, for discussion.

        Dr Briedenhann
        Soybean Working Group


    8. Macrophomina phaseolina (Charcoal rot)


      (Resolution 8.7.1 of the Technology Committee minutes of 19 June 2013)

      Mr Keun reported that a pamphlet on charcoal rot had been published, and would be distributed.

    9. Soybean production manual


      (Resolutions 8.6.1, 8.6.2 and 8.6.4 of the Technology Committee minutes of 14 August 2013)

      Mr Keun reported that the ARC-GCI had indicated that they would look at reviewing the pamphlets "Plant sojabone met vertroue" and "Grow soybeans with confidence". He added that the ARC-GCI had agreed to write articles, based on the soybean production manual. He said an article would also be published on weed control in soybeans.

    10. Effective nematicides available internationally


      (Resolution 8.7.1 of the Technology Committee minutes of 14 August 2013)

      The Chairperson thanked Mr Louw for the work he had been doing on the registration of certain nematicides. Cognisance was taken that Avicta had been registered on soybeans.

    11. Combined meeting of the Soybean Working Group and the Sunflower and Soybean Forum


      (Resolution 17.1.1 of the PRF Board minutes of 19 and 20 September 2013)

      The Chairperson reported that the Board of the PRF had resolved that the combined meeting of the Soybean Working Group and the Sunflower and Soybean Forum would be suspended with effect 1 January 2014. He said the general feeling was that sunflower was not afforded the attention it deserved at the combined meetings.

      Noted:

      1. That cognisance be taken that the meetings of the Soybean Working Group and the Sunflower and Soybean Forum would be held independently as from 1 January 2014.

        Mr Keun
        Soybean Working Group
        Sunflower and Soybean Forum


    12. Request: SACOTA

      Cognisance was taken that the Forum had previously resolved that the marketing years for both sunflower seed and soybeans would be determined as 1 March to 28 February. Mr Keun confirmed that he would submit an official request in this regard to SAGIS.

      Noted:

      1. That an official request would be submitted to SAGIS on the amendment of the marketing years of both sunflower seed and soybeans to 1 March to 28 February.

        Mr Keun
        Sunflower and Soybean Forum


    13. Request: GrainSA

      The Chairperson called on Mr Louw to brief the meeting on the matters that GrainSA had referred to the Forum for discussion.

      Mr Louw reported that GrainSA's Sunflower and Soybean Working Group had requested that data on weekly sunflower and soybean crushings, and data on weekly imports of oilcake and vegetable oils be made available. He said the producers felt that this data would be important for market transparency, seen against the background of the additional crushing facilities that had already come on line, or would be coming on line soon. He note that it would be preferred that SAGIS compiled the information for a period of at least two years, on a statutory basis.

      The Chairperson asked whether the Competition Commission would view such data gathering in a favourable light. Mr Hawkins noted that SAGIS already compiled the data on a monthly basis. He said in his view, the Competition Commission would not object to such data being distributed, provided that the data was available to all concerned. He mentioned that there would be cost implications for SAGIS, and that the matter would have to be cleared by SAGIS's principals.

      Mr Joubert said if the data had to be collected on a statutory basis, and GrainSA could provide a motivation on the issue of market transparency, and probably food security as well, the matter would have to be channeled via the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC). He noted that the normal route would be followed by the NAMC, with the industry as a whole being consulted in the process, before recommendations were made to the Minister.

      Mr Louw confirmed that he was aware of this ruling. He said he had raised the matter at the Forum, so that industry was made aware of GrainSA's intentions.

      Mr Sturgess raised the matter of the marketing years for sunflower and soybeans, and asked whether those dates would be imple­mented as from 2014 or 2015. Mr Louw said GrainSA would prefer that the amendment be effected as soon as possible. Mr Sturgess mentioned that he would have to consult the members of SAFEX on this, as some of the members had traded at spread, with a cost of carry, and that the market's understanding was that the carry had stopped at a certain date.

      Mr Willem Engelbrecht noted that some producers harvested in February and March, and that the new harvest would have to be allocated to the previous marketing year.

      Mr Hawkins said SAGIS dealt with historical data only, and would report on data submitted from 1 March to end February, instead of 1 January to end December. He noted that market-related issues did not have an effect on SAGIS's reports.

      The Chairperson ruled that the matter be held in abeyance, for discussion at a following meeting.

      Mr Louw said GrainSA had also discussed the matter with regard to SAFEX's phasing out of the 25 ton contract, and had requested that both the 25 and the 50 ton contracts be retained. He explained that the producers held the opinion that the 50 ton contract was too large, and would discourage producers from trading on SAFEX. He said GrainSA had also discussed the possibility of contracts in multiples of 30 tons, or even ten tons, so as to encourage developing farmers to also trade on SAFEX.

      Mr Sturgess said the 25 ton contracts were decided on when the soybean contracts were originally launched in 2002, as fewer soy­beans were produced in those days. He noted that various roleplayers in the industry had been consulted, before the 50 ton contracts were decided on. He said SAFEX appreciated GrainSA's concern for small-scale farmers, and were trading a ten ton maize contract. He noted that SAFEX could easily bring in a ten ton soybean contract, if there were a demand for it, and if producers came out in support of such an instrument.

      Cognisance was taken that the matter of soybean contracts would be resolved by the producers, traders and SAFEX.

      Mr Louw said the GrainSA had taken cognisance of the fact that certain roleplayers had been exerting pressure on SAFEX to imple­ment an area differential on soybeans. He added that GrainSA held the opinion that the market functioned well without the differential, and wished to share this view with the members of the Forum.

      Mr Sturgess said SAFEX was passionate about the market, and considered the differential to be a component that made the market work efficiently. He mentioned that production was fairly concentrated when the contracts were first introduced, and that soybean contracts had started with four delivery points. He said nowadays, the small radius of delivery points were no longer valid, as production in far out areas was starting to grow.

      Mr Sturgess said the choice was to either retain the narrow set of delivery points, which had its disadvantages, or to find a reference point from where soybeans in South Africa would be priced.

      The Chairperson noted that the Forum could not pass a resolution on the matter. He said it would have to be discussed by those who were specifically involved in the matter.

      Noted:

      1. That cognisance be taken that the matter with regard to the implementation of the marketing years for sunflower and soybeans will be discussed at the following meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum.

        Messrs Louw, Sturgess
        Sunflower and Soybean Forum


    14. Article on vegetable oils


      Drs du Plessis and van Twisk

      Dr van Twisk reported that the South African Association for Food Science and Technology had requested that an article be written on vegetable oils, for publication in the association's official journal.

  14. Date of next meeting

    The date of the next meeting of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum was determined as 16 January 2014, while the date of the next meeting Soybean Working Group was determined as 30 January 2014.

  15. Closure

    The Chairperson thanked the members for their attendance at, and active participation in, the meeting. There being no further matters for discussion, the meeting was closed at 13:40.