Chisom Jenniffer Okoye
2 minute read
26 Nov 2019
6:33 am

Dry weather, little money mean tough times for farmers

Chisom Jenniffer Okoye

Although farmers had intended to plant 2.5 million hectares, this may not be possible.

Laubscher Coetzee’s farm in Oudtshoorn in November 2019. Photo supplied.

The “erratic” weather and financial constraints have combined to make this a “tough time for South African agriculture”, according to an agricultural economist. “Most regions have finally received a reprieve” with some rain, allowing farmers to begin their planting activities for the season, department of water and sanitation spokesperson Sputnik Ratau said yesterday. But below-average rainfall and high temperatures had worsened the water situation. “We are nowhere near the water recovery we were hoping for this season,” Ratau said. “There has been a decline of dam levels nationally, which is above the average of 1%, so we are in a...