If the government really wants to protect consumers from food price increases then it needs to grow the economy and tackle unemployment and the crippling costs of load-shedding and crime, says Wandile Sihlobo, chief economist at the Agricultural Business Chamber of South Africa.

Instructing the cabinet, as it did last week, to implement a “food security plan” more than six months after food price inflation started trending down from a high of 14.4% in March won't do it, he says. And he cautions against any attempt to use the plan as a pretext for price interference...

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