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My last column (https://webmail.timesmedia.co.za/owa/redir.aspx?REF=pjD4z3recHMyz05uqsv30sz6YSUMZcgcLlIBIU-Hn5FDJNb1QqnXCAFodHRwczovL3d3dy5idXNpbmVzc2xpdmUuY28uemEvYmQvb3Bpbmlvbi9jb2x1bW5pc3RzLzIwMjAtMDEtMjMtd2FuZGlsZS1zaWhsb2JvLWZhcm1lcnMtb3B0aW1pc20tcmVpbmVkLWluLWJ5LWRpc2Vhc2UtYW5kLWlycmVndWxhci1yYWluZmFsbC8.) two weeks ago painted a bleak picture of SA’s 2019/2020 agricultural outlook, highlighting prospects of drought in some regions of the country. Lately, conditions have improved notably, and farmers managed to plant the area they intended.

This was confirmed by the preliminary plantings data released last week by SA’s Crop Estimates Committee (CEC), which put the 2019/2020 summer crop area at 3.97-million hectares. This encompasses yellow maize, white maize, sunflower seed, soya beans, groundnuts, sorghum and dry beans...

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