How competitive is the SA soya bean industry?

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From 1 March 2019 producers will be charged a statutory levy of R65 for every ton of soya beans sold. This statutory levy was introduced by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries after a request from role-players in the industry, represented by the Sunflower and Soybean Forum.

Use of farm-saved seed

The purpose of the levy is to encourage seed companies to introduce new cultivars with advanced technology to the local market. South African soya bean producers mainly plant farm-saved seed from the previous season. The South African National Seed Organisation (SANSOR) estimates that up to 80% of soya bean plantings in the country are done with farm-saved seed.

It is common practice worldwide to retain a portion of the harvest of open-pollinated crops to plant again in the next season. One of the disadvantages of this practice is that new seed sales are relatively low and hence it is not profitable for seed companies to invest in developing new and improved cultivars.

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