South Africa plays a critical role in the continent's crop protection industry

This year, South African farmers are facing environmental stresses, like drought and the rising costs of energy and crop inputs such as fertilizer, machinery, crop protection, and seed. Growers focusing on fruit exports also face aging railways, transport, and harbor-handling challenges. These disruptive factors are affecting grower profitability and impacting the crop inputs industry.

Multinational companies such as Bayer, Syngenta, Corteva, BASF, and FMC provide products to a well-organized distribution channel. A vast number of crop protection products sold in South Africa are locally formulated using imported ingredients from China, the United States, France, and Germany. Companies importing, manufacturing, and distributing agrochemicals are members of CropLife South Africa, which represents the crop protection industry in the region.

Products used for pest or disease control on plants must be registered under Act 36 of 1947 (the Fertilizers, Farm Feeds, Agricultural Remedies, and Stock Remedies Act). But according to Christian Giesel, Head of Crop Protection Marketing, Syngenta, the regulatory environment is stifling existing crop protection technologies that could contribute to food security.

“The backlog in government registrations of new crop protection technologies is also constraining the industry,” Giesel says. Kobus Meintjes, Bayer Crop Science Country Commercial Lead: South Africa, agrees. “The biggest challenge to growing the market is the pace of regulatory approvals. To register a new product in South Africa is a significant investment, and the delays in registration because of the regulatory system influences the return on investment.”

Read more at agribusinessglobal.com


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