The revised area and fourth production forecast and summer crop estimate for 2020 was recently released by the Crop Estimates Committee (CEC).

Read it in Afrikaans.

Commercial maize

The size of the expected commercial maize crop has been set at 15,589 million tons, which is 2,42% or 367 890 tons more than the previous forecast of 15,222 million tons. The area estimate for maize is 2,611 million hectares, while the expected yield is 5,97t/ha.

The estimated maize crop is 38% bigger than the 2019 crop. The three main maize producing areas, namely the Free State, Mpumalanga and North West provinces, are expected to produce 84% of the 2020 crop.

White maize

The area estimate for white maize is 1,616 million hectares and for yellow maize the estimate is 994 500ha.

The production forecast for white maize is 9,075 million tons, which is 3,36% or 295 390 tons more than the 8,779 million tons of the previous forecast. The yield for white maize is 5,61t/ha. In the case of yellow maize, the production forecast is 6,514 million tons, which is 1,13% or 72 500 tons more than the 6,442 million tons of the previous forecast. The yield for yellow maize is 6,55t/ha.

The yield per hectare for the Free State and North West provinces was based on scientific and objective results provided by the Agricultural Research Council (ARC).

Sunflower seed

The production forecast for sunflower seed increased by 4,75% or 34 750 tons to 765 960 tons. The area estimate for sunflower seed is 500 300ha, while the expected yield is 1,53t/ha.

Other crops

The production forecast for soya beans remained unchanged at 1,291 million tons. The estimated area planted to soya beans is 705 000ha and the expected yield is 1,83t/ha.

The expected groundnut crop also remained unchanged at 62 470 tons. For groundnuts, the area estimate is 37 500ha, with an expected yield of 1,67t/ha.

The production forecast for sorghum is 135 685 tons, which is 2,30% or 3 200 tons less than the 138 885 tons of the previous forecast. The area estimate for sorghum is 42 500ha and the expected yield is 3,19t/ha.

In the case of dry beans, the production forecast is 71 050, which is 0,46% or 330 tons less than the previous forecast. The area estimate for dry beans is 50 150ha, with an expected yield of 1,42t/ha.

Note that the fifth production forecast for summer field crops for 2020 will be released on 25 June. – CEC report

Click here to read Wandile Sihlobo’s commentary on this production forecast. Wandile is head of economic and agribusiness intelligence at Agbiz. Click here to read the previous summer field crop report.