Turn to SA political leaders’ economic speeches these days and you will often see mention of agriculture being among the sectors that will boost our economic fortunes and create jobs in rural areas. For a long time this has been stated without a clear practical execution plan.

The National Development Plan (NDP) is one of the few documents that comes close to providing a framework for achieving this ambition. This is through its identification, in chapter six, of agricultural subsectors that should be a key focus for development — mainly horticulture — and the processes to be followed to unlock the value of agricultural production. There is a need for irrigation systems, market linkages and increased investment.

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