The expected rainfall in the western parts of South Africa did not materialise in many areas this week (ending 9 November 2018), and thus the maize and sunflower seed planting activity has not progressed much in this particular region. This, however, is not a major concern for now as the optimal planting window will be open until mid-December 2018.
The optimal planting window is narrowing in the eastern part of South Africa, as it is typically open between mid-October and mid-November. Fortunately, maize planting activity has progressed somewhat following good rainfall in the past couple of weeks which improved soil moisture.
In the winter crop growing areas, harvesting is gaining momentum and the progress is mirrored in the volume of wheat recently delivered to commercial silos in the Western Cape. Harvesting will most likely progress well during the next two weeks as the weather forecast shows clear skies over most parts of the province.
Apart from the grain market, the SAFEX beef carcass market experienced a quiet week with prices unchanged from levels seen last week (ending 2 November 2018). In terms of supply, South African farmers slaughtered 189 108 head of cattle in September 2018, down by 11% year-on-year (Y/Y) due to the herd rebuilding process after a reduction during the 2015/2016 drought. –Wandile Sihlobo
Wandile Sihlobo, head of economic and agribusiness intelligence at Agbiz, shares highlights in his update on agricultural commodity markets. Click here for the full report on agri markets for the major commodities.