The preliminary area estimate is mainly based on the results of a non-probability survey conducted by the directorate of statistics and economic analysis of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
Less rainfall and warmer temperatures, in the western producing areas over the past few weeks, has prevented producers from planting their intended acreages with summer crops, especially in the Free State and North West provinces.
The revised area planted, and production figures, which will be released by the Crop Estimates Committee on 27 February, will be based primarily on information obtained from the Producer Independent Crop Estimation System (PICES) survey for the Free State, KwaZulu-Natal, Mpumalanga, Limpopo, Gauteng and North West provinces.
The preliminary area estimate for maize is 2 269 million hectares, which is 2,15% or 49 950 hectares less than the 2 319 million hectares planted in the previous season and 7,33% or 179 500 hectares less than the 2 448 million hectares intended for maize planting according to figures released in October, 2018.
The preliminary area estimate for white maize is 1 257 million hectares, which is 0,88% or 11 100 hectares less than the 1 268 million hectares planted last season. In the case of yellow maize the area estimate is 1 012 million hectares which is 3,7% or 38 850 hectares less than the 1 051 million hectares planted last season.
The preliminary area estimate for sunflower seed is 444 000 hectares, 26,18% or 157 500 hectares less than the 601 500 hectares planted the previous season. It is estimated that 743 600 hectares has been planted to soya beans, a decrease of 5,54% or 43 600 hectares compared to the 787 200 hectares planted last season.
Groundnuts and sorghum
For groundnuts, the area estimate is 19 200 hectares, 65,9% or 37 100 hectares less than the 56 300 hectares planted in the previous season. The area estimate for sorghum increased by 59,72%, from 28 800 hectares in the previous season to 46 000 hectares.
The area estimate for dry beans is 56 000 hectares, 4,95% or 2 640 hectares more than the 53 360 hectares planted in the previous season.
Please note that the revised area estimate and first production forecast for summer field crops for 2019 will be released on 27 February 2019. – CEC Report