Fruit export delays costing SA farmers millions

Fruit export delays costing SA farmers millions

Agricultural experts believe some R1 billion worth of export fruit will not reach their destinations in the northern hemisphere due to logistical and power issues at the Cape Town harbour.

Fruit export delays costing SA farmers millions

This represents some 10% of the total exports.

Chairperson of the World Farmers Organisation Dr. Theo de Jager says farmers are losing millions in revenue due to power issues at state-owned company Transnet and Portnet.

According to De Jager farmers from South Africa and Zimbabwe lost more than 60 containers of stock at the harbour. 

"These containers must be refrigerated up to -0,5 degrees celsius and these containers are not plugged into electricity. No insurance company is prepared to cover those containers while they are at the harbour premises, this problem is a simple management problem. 

“We need people who can manage freight. South Africa is not only losing out foreign currency but losing thousands of jobs because farmers top growing exports fruits.”

He says the seaports should be privatised to stop poor management.

“The fault is with Transnet, with the habour we really need capable people in those ports, we propose the privatisation of the ports. Get them out of political influence and get qualified people, experienced to manage the ports. 

“If Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania can get it right we can do something about it.”

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