SOUTH AFRICA’S DROUGHT TO AFFECTR PRICE OF MILK

JOHANNESBURG, The grouping representing farmers in South Africa’s Western Cape Province, AgriWestern Cape, has warned that the industry may suffer up to 14 billion Rand (about 1.13 billion US dollars) in losses as a result of the ongoing drought.

The prices of various milk products may increase in the near future as a result of expected losses of income by farmers in the province, it warned.

AgriWestern Cape said here Monday that up to 400,000 permanent and seasonal jobs are also at risk.

Farmers have been required by the authorities to reduce their water consumption by up to 60 per cent as dam levels continue to decline in the Western Cape, which has been ravaged by a drought which has dragged on for more than two years.

AgriWCape chief executive officer Carl Opperman says: Certain areas of the agriculture sector are already in Day Zero, because we cannot irrigate any further.

“It will have a devastating effect not only on the agricultural side, but also the total value chain, e.g. milk has got to go into yoghurt, to all the cheeses etc. There’s no water, we’ve got to make a plan to see where we can move those animals — at a high cost — and at the risk of losing them entirely.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK