Dr Konanani Liphadzi, the first chief executive officer of Fruit South Africa (Fruit SA), has decided to step down, after six years in the position, in order to pursue other interests.

Dr Konanani Liphadzi.

Fruit SA is an umbrella organisation of the organised South African fruit industries and has as its founder members the Citrus Growers’ Association of Southern Africa, Hortgro, South African Table Grape Industry, Subtrop and Fresh Produce Exporters’ Forum. Fruit SA concentrates on the challenges and opportunities faced by all fruit industries, with a focus on transformation, market access and logistics.

Praise for Dr Liphadzi

Fruit SA chairperson, Justin Chadwick, praised Dr Liphadzi for her dedication in putting Fruit SA on the map: “It is incredibly difficult to step into a vacuum, with no reference point or example to follow in your new job. Konanani took on the challenge and has raised the profile of Fruit SA to a point where the organisation is well known in government circles and among stakeholders.”

Reflecting on her six years at the helm of Fruit SA, Dr Liphadzi had the following to say: “I thank Fruit SA and the fruit industry for the opportunity to serve in this role. I am grateful to the Fruit SA board who allowed me the space and resources to bring the Fruit SA idea into life. As I leave, I am fully convinced that as South Africans we have it within ourselves, our country, our sector and our industry to significantly improve the socioeconomic equity challenges that face our country.”

Dr Liphadzi will leave office at the end of March 2020. – Press release, Fruit SA