Smart industrial policy design that identifies and supports high-value agricultural sectors, such as fresh fruit, is an easy win for the government to truly transform agriculture, drive economic growth and create jobs. As then finance minister Malusi Gigaba noted in the 2018 budget, agriculture led the economic recovery following 2017’s recession. Echoing what President Cyril Ramaphosa had said in his state of the nation address, Gigaba added that agriculture is among the sectors in which the country has a competitive advantage and has the potential to become world class. Since 2002, the fruit industry has become the largest export contributor within the agriculture sector. Linkages across the value chain multiply this figure in the form of service industry jobs in packaging, logistics and cold-chain facilities. Technology has also allowed the production and preservation of higher-valued crops so that they arrive on shelves in stores in overseas markets in pristine condition. Fruit ...

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