South Africans have always been known for their willingness to reach out to others in times of need. This recently became evident again with the launch of several projects to assist the needy, especially in areas where the destructive effect of the disrupted economy is most visible.

Senwes responded to an appeal by Agbiz to ensure food security amid the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown, by launching the AVC Food Umbrella initiative in May. Together with agribusinesses and role-players in the value chain, their aim was to give back to communities. Their objective is to feed five million people through the distribution of 5kg bags of maize meal.

“We appeal to producers farming in communities that could benefit from this initiative to donate a few tons of their harvest to this deserving cause,” says Francois Strydom, CEO of the Senwes Group.

How does it work?

When a donation is made to the AVC Food Umbrella, Senwes Grainlink’s silos will receive, handle and store the maize. Grainovation, the group’s logistics subsidiary, will transport the maize from the silo to the mill. The mills will process and package the maize at no cost, after which Senwes will facilitate the distribution of the maize meal to old-age homes, feeding schemes and farm schools.

A cash donation from TWK Communications made the delivery of 1 600 bags of maize meal to The Church of Jesus Christ in Bedfordview, Johannesburg, possible. Thuso Mills in Bothaville supplied the maize meal and Hinterland sponsored the transport.

How to get involved

Producers can contribute by delivering maize to any Senwes Grainlink silo on delivery number 418688. Contributions in the form of other commodities can be made via the AVC Food Umbrella website at

Cash donations are also accepted and can be made to the following account:

Account holder: THOBO TRUST
Bank: ABSA
Account number: 4082869226
Branch: Church Street, Klerksdorp
Branch code: 334338

A token of gratitude

Senwes, Bayer and Grain SA have joined forces to give producers one bag of DEKALB seed (cultivar of choice) for every two tons of white/yellow maize donated on delivery number 418688 (limited to a maximum of five bags of seed). This offer expires on 15 September 2020 or when stocks run out.

To claim your DEKALB seed, email proof of delivery to the AVC Food Umbrella 418688 account, including the tonnage delivered, to Christa Herbst at

For enquiries, contact Johan Le Grange on 018 464 7521 or, or visit