WATCH: Nation in Conversation

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JOHANNESBURG - Nation in Conversation was launched in 2014 with the aim of stimulating broader dialogue about the agricultural sector. 

Agricultural issues affect the entire nation. If agriculture thrives, the country thrives. 

The contributors to this are convinced that through public discussion and informed contributions to this dialogue, it is possible to find answers to some of the burning questions in the sector, in a constructive manner. 

The theme for Nation in Conversation for 2019 is, The role and contribution of agriculture in the transformation of our society, our economy and the building of our democracy.

In 2018 the private sector extended a hand to government and the PPGI is the result. It is based on a solid collaborative foundation between business and government. Courtesy #Dstv403

Dr. John Purchase, CEO of Agbiz explains how the five-year plan for agriculture came about, its challenges and what it hopes to achieve.

The combining of agriculture, land reform and rural development in the new cabinet is widely seen as a positive step, but there will still be challenges.

Access to funding is still an inhibitor for emerging farmers, but efforts through the Agriculture Development Agency aims to alleviate these hurdles.

A well-known force in rural development, Gloria Serobe discusses the focus on traditional communities in developing the potential of communal areas.

There is an opportunity for the private sector to get involved with wastewater treatment and make a profit from it.

The needs of farmers differ, whether they want to achieve household food security, or are aiming for export markets. Finance support must be clear on the ultimate aim.

Day Zero in Cape Town focussed South Africa’s attention on our water challenges, but some small towns experience day zero every day.

Farmers must constantly manage tighter margins without the prospect of commodity price increases. Implementing new technology across their operations is one way to mitigate risks.

Roelf Meyer, one of the initiators of the South African Agriculture Development Agency, believes the momentum is there to make this initiative a success.

Many past initiatives at rural development have failed, but the proposed South African Agriculture Development Agency brings the private sector onboard.

The Banking Association of SA suggested a funding model for agricultural development back in 2015. Now the South African Agriculture Development Agency can become the conduit to translate funding into meaningful development.

The proposed South African Agricultural Development Agency can be the mechanism between agribusinesses and developing farmers, to initiate inclusive growth. Courtesy #DStv403