Ina Opperman
Business Journalist
4 minute read
7 Sep 2021
4:13 pm

Food pricing report shows drop in number of farmers

Ina Opperman

Although farming in South Africa is increasingly concentrated, there is a trend to ‘buy local’ which offers an opportunity for small-scale farmers.

Picture: iStock

The Competition Commission’s latest Essential Food Pricing Monitoring Report has shown a drop in the number of farmers. In 2007 South Africa had 3,899 dairy farmers, but only 1,053 in January this year. This alarming drop has raised concerns about market power across the value chain with farmers, especially small farmers, having to deal with low operating margins. The report focuses on tracking the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting food market crisis. The new report is the fifth and apart from the drop in farmer numbers, also indicates an increase in concentration across the food value chain....