Work Group Minutes

Sunflower, Soybean and Soybean Food Forum
Meeting held on 7 October 2020 by means of a virtual platform (MS Teams)

  1. Opening

    Mr Gerhard Keun opened the meeting with prayer.

  2. Welcome

    The Chairperson, Mr Jozeph du Plessis, welcomed everybody present at the last meeting of the Forum for 2020.

  3. Attendance


    Mr J du Plessis Chairperson
    Mr J Botma Producer: Free State
    Ms L Bronkhorst ARC-GCI
    Mr D Botes LEAF Services
    Dr E Briedenhann PRF/OAC
    Mr D de W Boshoff AFMA/SACOTA
    Mr T Clark RCL Foods
    Ms AS de Beer ARC-GCI
    Mr GP de Beer Contractor
    Mr D Kok SACOTA
    Mr H Davis Eden Social Development Foundation
    Dr J Dreyer PRF
    Mr N Hawkins SAGIS
    Mr G Heyns SACTA
    Mr M Jacobsz SACOTA
    Dr C Joubert NAMC
    Dr T Kapuya BFAP
    Mr R Kuschke Klein Karoo Seed Marketing
    Mr R Küsel Producer: KwaZulu-Natal
    Dr S Lamprecht ARC-PPRI
    Ms DB Mahasha DAFF
    Ms I Mothebe DTI
    Mr W Lemmer AgbizGrain
    Mr P Lovelace CEOCO/SAOPA
    Mr CJ Louw Grain SA
    Dr S Ma'ali ARC-GCI
    Ms I Maluleke GSA
    Ms I Mothebe DTI
    Mr V Mpumza JSE
    Mr C Opperman Leaf Services
    Mr C Pelser Agricol/SANSOR
    Mr TJ Phasoana ARC-PHP
    Mr MA Prinsloo ARC-GCI
    Mr D Rajcoomar RCL Foods
    Mr C Rasoesoe DTI
    Mr L Schoonraad Corteva
    Mr B Schultz SAGIS
    Dr D Strydom Grain SA
    Dr P Taljaard Bayer
    Mr A Theron PRF
    Ms S van der Merwe Corteva
    Mr L van der Walt Grain SA
    Mr J van der Westhuizen Producer
    Mr WF van Wyk Contractor
    Mr L Verhoef AgraTech Trade
    Ms H Vermeulen ARC-GCI
    Ms M du Preez PRF
    Ms S Brits PRF


    Ms R Beukes DAFF
    Mr W de Wet AFMA
    Ms W Louw SAGL
    Prof F Meyer BFAP
    Ms L Rothmann UFS
    Ms M Scheepers DAFF
  4. Personalia

    None reported.

  5. Confirmation of the agenda

    The agenda was accepted.

  6. Approval of minutes

    1. Minutes of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soybean Food Forum held on 30 July 2019 and referral to website


      1. That the minutes of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soybean Food Forum held on 30 July 2020 be accepted as a true and fair reflection of that meeting, and that the minutes be referred to the Oilseeds Industry's website for publication.

        Ms Du Preez
        Steering Committee

  7. Current soybean prices: local and inter­national

    A brief overview was given of the current state of the national and international soybean and sunflower markets, with aspects such as the current state of production, prices, demand and supply, amongst others, being covered. Cognisance was taken that the derived soybean price on 25 September 2020 was R7 075 per ton.

  8. SAGIS

    The contents of the latest SAGIS Weekly Bulletin and of the latest Monthly Bulletin were noted. Cognisance was taken that this and other data were published on the SAGIS website.

    Mr Hawkins done a short presentation in respect of the SAGIS information.

    The Chairperson thanked Mr Hawkins for the excellent work done by SAGIS.

  9. South African Supply and Demand Estimates Committee (SASDEC)

    Dr Joubert mentioned that the latest South African Supply and Demand Estimates Reports were included in the report of Dr Briedenhann at the previous discussion point.

  10. Crop estimates

    1. Latest crop estimates: Soybeans and Sunflower

      No detailed information was available during the meeting, and cognisance was taken of the Crops Estimate Report included as Annexure E.

  11. Producer matters: Sunflower and Soybeans

    1. KwaZulu-Natal

      1. General

        Mr Küsel reported that KwaZulu-Natal had an average soybean season. As a result of rainfall in certain parts prospects for the new season is looking good and planting of soybeans has started.

    2. Mpumalanga and Gauteng

      1. General

        Mr Van Wyk reported that Mpumalanga experienced good rainfall and planting for minimum till and no-till will start shortly. He mentioned that Gauteng received approximately 35mm rainfall and planting will commence soon.

    3. North West and Limpopo Province

      1. General

        The Chairperson reported that in North West soybean production was better than sunflower. The planting of soybeans will expand during the coming season due to the profitability of soybeans. The planting of sunflower will only commence if the planting date is late as a result of late rainfall. He further mentioned that if early rainfall is experienced the producers will plant soybeans instead of sunflower.

        Mr De Beer reported that it was a very good year for soybeans. He mentioned that soil samples were taken in the western part of the North West and the available moisture in the soil is better than experienced the same time the previous year. With good rainfall a good season is predicted.

    4. Free State

      1. General

        Mr Botma reported on the previous season in the Northern Free State. He mentioned that they had an above average season for soybeans. As a result of late planting of Sunflower the yields were not as good as with soybeans. A survey was done which indicated that more soybeans will be planted in the coming season.

    5. Eastern and Northern Cape and South Western Districts

      1. General

        No report back.

  12. Soybean value chain

    1. Local soybean stocks/supply and demand

      It be noted that the matter was discussed during a previous discussion point.

    2. Quality of local soybeans and soybean oilcake

      1. Feedback on industry study

        Dr Briedenhann gave feedback on resolved issues from previous Soybean Supply Chain meetings:

        • The proficiency testing of laboratories on soybean meal and soybeans;
        • Timeous availability of the crop quality analysis for soybeans.
      2. Benchmarking against international standards and quality

        Dr Briedenhann reported on the soybean and soybean oilcake, project allocated to BFAP. He mentioned that the terms of reference will be submitted by BFAP and the study will be completed before the end of the year.


        1. That feedback regarding the soybean and soybean oilcake quality study be awaited.

          Prof Meyer

    3. Infrastructure

      No feedback is available from the Task Team, which was established at the previous Forum meeting.

      Feedback will only be available after the meeting scheduled by GrainSA for 22 October 2020.

    4. Imports and exports

      Feedback is awaited regarding the matter.

    5. Grain and oilseeds Value Chain Indaba

      Mr Keun gave feedback on the Value Chain discussions which was held on 27 August 2020 and facilitated by the Protein Research Foundation.

      He referred to the actions that were identified and addressed:

      • Transport, meeting to be held on 22 October 2020 and facilitated by GSA;
      • Tariff rebate system, will be facilitated by Mr Breitenbach from SAPA; and
      • Recommendation from the Research Priority Committee to the Oilseeds Advisory Committee in respect of a study be done by BFAP on the impact of soybeans and soybeans oilcake import tariff.

      Mr Keun reported that all information from the studies and actions will combined in a soybean strategy.

      Mr Boshoff proposed that time lines and milestones be added, as well as that it should be outcome based. He further mentioned that different associations and all parts of the value chain should take responsibility which will benefit all role players in this value chain.

      Dr Briedenhann reported on the way it was addressed, key issues identified, to obtain as must information as possible and address it as quickly as possible. Feedback be given at this Forum as well as the Supply Chain meetings in terms of what has been accomplished. He suggested to attempt to address issues on an ongoing basis achieved and at a later stage compile a comprehensive document.

      Mr Boshoff requested that a list be compiled containing items or information gathered and completed projects, as well as a list of critical issues that could be prioritised and addressed. He proposed that completed studies be added on the list and be addressed. He further suggested that the Task Team scheduled a meeting to discuss the way forward and thereafter give feedback to the Forum and the Value Chain meetings.

      Cognisance was taken that feedback be given at the next Forum meeting.


      1. That it be noted that feedback be given at the next Forum meeting as well as the Value Chain meeting in respect of identified actions, progress made and accomplishments.

        Mr Keun
        Dr Briedenhann

  13. Sunflower value chain

    1. Sunflower quality

      Cognisance was taken that a comprehensive study was done by BFAP on sunflower quality, the abstract is available as Annexure F. The complete BFAP document is available from Ms Du Preez and BFAP.

    2. Sunflower value chain discussion

      The Chairperson referred to the graphs showed and mentioned that the growth in production of soybeans in the local processing and domestic use have increased substantial. In comparison with the soybean industry the sunflower industry lack behind. He referred to challenges previously identified, discussions held with role players and the BFAP quality report. He further mentioned that recently a Sunflower Value Chain discussion was held. Hard work needs to be done to improve the sunflower industry. He referred to the increase in the importation of sunflower oil. He further mentioned that the sunflower industry should replicate what happened in the soybean industry.

      Mr Louw gave feedback and mentioned that the study done by BFAP was very informative and important. He mentioned two important points were identified:

      • Somewhere in the chain on silo level when sunflower gets delivered, oil testing needs to be done;
      • From the BFAP report, investigating the basis in which there is a minimum oil quality and that producers been paid an incentive for delivering a higher oil content. It is not always in the producers control to plant at a certain planting window. Later planting correlates with low oil content.

      The Chairperson mentioned that further discussion will be held with AgbizGrain in respect of the measuring of the oil content of sunflower produced and delivered.

      It be noted that feedback will be given at the next meeting.

  14. Research

    1. Soybeans

      1. National cultivar trials

        Details were provided by Ms De Beer regarding the national soybean cultivar trials for the new season, with reference to the cultivars, the localities, and participating seed companies. Results of the previous season will be published in November's GrainSA magazine as well as the ARC website.

      2. Soybean rust

        Dr Dreyer reported that no substantial rust incidences were reported.

      3. Sclerotinia

        Mr Van Wyk reported that he will continue with the Sclerotinia trials this year including one dry land and one irrigation trial. Feedback will be given at the April meeting.

        The Chairperson mentioned that during the virtual NAMPO discussions, Dr Rikus Kloppers from the Corteva Group, gave a lecture on farm level, how to avoid or manage Sclerotinia.

        Mr Louw was requested to follow up and obtain the link for Dr Kloppers talk and send it to Ms Du Preez.

        Dr Lamprecht reported that she was requested by GrainSA to assist with the prioritising of Sclerotinia research to be conducted. She mentioned the approach to follow is to prevent the disease rather to be reactive. A selective group of producers will be engage with for their inputs and to assist researchers with more field trials. The most important challenge with Sclerotinia on sunflower is the seedborne stage of the fungus, which needs to be addressed.


        1. That Mr Van Wyk give feedback at the April 2021 Forum meeting regarding Sclerotinia trials.

          Mr van Wyk

        2. That Mr Louw obtain the link of Dr Kloppers talk and send it to the OAC office.

          Mr Louw

      4. South African Cultivar and Technology Agency (SACTA)

        Mr Heyns reported that an application has been submitted for the continuation of the levy for the next two seasons. The application is still with the NAMC, in terms of their process. He further reported on the current market season and the collection rate. He mentioned that the results will be available within the next 2 to 3 weeks.

        The Chairperson thanked Mr Heyns for the important work they are doing.

      5. Rhizobium

        Mr Louw reported on the information he obtained from companies regarding the registered inoculants and strains. He referred to the list included in the Agenda as Annexure G, and mentioned that the list will be updated continuously.


        1. That it be noted that the Rhizobia list will be updated regularly.

          Soybean Working Group

      6. Sudden Death Syndrome

        Dr Lamprecht mentioned that one of the aims of the project that they conduct on sudden death syndrome (SDS) of soybean is to develop a molecular detection technique for rapid identification of the causal organisms of SDS. Previously five Fusarium species were reported to cause the disease worldwide and three of these were reported in South Africa. A recent taxonomic development is that all of these species are now synonymised under the current name Neocosmospora phaseoli. From the samples received for isolations a positive SDS case from Val was confirmed. To date there were 90 isolates of SDS collected causing species and related Fusarium species and have already sequenced three gene areas of all these isolates. DNA was also obtained from an international collection of the species not yet reported in South Africa and this will also be used for primer development. Due to the lockdown, no surveys could be conducted of the trials planned in April. A request for extension for the project was submitted to the Oilseeds Advisory Committee.

    2. Sunflower

      1. National cultivar trials

        A presentation was delivered by Dr Safiah Ma'ali on the results of the national sunflower cultivar for the 2019-2020 season. The results will be published in October's GrainSA magazine as well as the ARC website.

      2. Biological control of Sclerotinia on sunflower, Prof M Laing, University of KwaZulu-Natal

        Mr Keun reported that no progress was made and suggested to step off the matter.

  15. Technology transfer

    1. Articles

      Cognisance was taken of the articles included in Annexure H.

    2. Sunflower Highlights

      Cognisance was taken of the various editions of the Sunflower Highlights, included in Annexure I.

    3. LEAF Services

      The Chairperson proposed that Mr Opperman be invited to give a presentation on LEAF Service at the next Forum meeting scheduled for January 2021.

      Mr Opperman gave a short introduction of the LEAF Working Group and reported that the feasibility study is progressing well.

      Mr Botes gave feedback on the potential of LEAF to add value and the grading system.


      1. That Mr Opperman be invited to give a presentation on LEAF Services at the next Forum meeting in January 2021.

        Mr Keun

    4. Information Days 2021

      Mr Keun requested that information regarding information days be sent to the office by chemical and seed companies and the ARC, for distribution to the members of the Forum.

    5. Videos

      The Chairperson requested that interesting video's be forwarded to Ms Du Preez.

    6. Oilseeds Focus

      Dr Briedenhann thanked everybody for their contributions, pictures, articles and support.

    7. Yield Competition

      Mr Louw reported on the "Grow for gold competition" function which will be held on 15 October 2020. The results will be available in magazine articles and on the Grain SA website.

  16. Other matters

    1. Chemicals and inoculants

      No feedback.

    2. Fertilisers

      Dr Taljaard reported that the registration of Velum1 GR for soybeans, was approved.

      The Chairperson requested Dr Taljaard to give feedback at the next Forum meeting on the effect of this product on yields.

      Mr Louw reported that due to Covid the transportation and importation of different materials is slower than normal. He further mentioned that Foskor, who are the bulk producers of phosphate, had problems doing maintenance and had to close during Covid.


      1. That Dr Taljaard be requested to give feedback on the effect of Velum1 GR for soybeans on yield, at the next Forum meetings.

        Dr Taljaard

    3. Seed/cultivars

      Dr Taljaard reported that information in respect of new seed technology will only be available by May 2021.

    4. Processing

      No feedback.

    5. Trading

      No feedback.

    6. Consumers and soybean food

      Mr Keun reported that the Oilseeds Advisory Committee and the Oil and Protein Seeds Development Trust is planning a Soybean Food Symposium, scheduled for 16 September 2021, at the CSIR Convention Centre.

    7. Acquisition and Utilisation of Grains and Oilseeds

      Mr Keun reported on the requests received from SACOTA in respect of the "Acquisition and Utilisation of Grains and Oil Seeds" (16.7) and "Dispute Resolution Process" (16.8). He mentioned that these matters were discussed with Mr Kok from SACOTA to obtain more information. Meetings with the relevant role players will be organised and feedback regarding progress will be reported at the next Forum meeting.


      1. That comprehensive feedback be given at the January 2021 meeting of the Forum.

        Mr Keun

    8. Dispute Resolution Process

      Matter was discussed during the previous discussion (16.7) point by Mr Keun.

    9. Transport Differential on SAFEX

      The Chairperson gave feedback on a letter sent to the JSE containing the committee's view and actions and a way forward regarding the soybean location differential. He referred to discussions on industry level regarding the matter with the view to propose alternative or more acceptable models.

      Mr Van der Walt confirmed that this matter forms part of a Transport Task Team of the Soybean Value Chain Work Group scheduled for 22 October 2020. Feedback will be provided at the next meeting.


      1. That it be noted that feedback will be given at the next Forum meeting regarding the matters attended to by the Transport Task Team.

        Mr Van der Walt

    10. Feeding Schemes

      Mr Keun gave feedback and reported that the Oilseeds Advisory Committee and the Oil and Protein Seeds Development Trust approved R1 million, of the generic marketing budget, in order to make a contribution in the form of food parcels to the less privileged people in South Africa.

      He mentioned that R500 000 was first approved and R490 000 was spent on 2000 food parcels. Products such as soybeans, soy butter, sunflower oil and soy nuts were included in the food parcels.

      He reported that the food parcels were distributed in Gauteng, Limpopo, Free State, Mpumalanga and Western Cape. In the second round the distribution will be concentrated in the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Western Cape and North West. Mr Keun referred to information in the September issue of the Oilseeds Focus regarding the matter.

  17. Election of chairperson

    Mr Keun explained the election procedures and the terms of reference of the Chairperson of the Forum.

    He requested members of the Forum to submit nominations for the election of a new Chairperson. Nominations must be submitted to the cell phone number provided on the screen either by WhatsApp or by sms. Members' name as well as the nominee, to be included in the message.

    Mr Keun reported that only one nomination was received and that it was not necessary for an election process. Mr Keun congratulated Mr Jozeph du Plessis as Chairperson of the Sunflower and Soybean Forum for the next two years and mentioned that he will also represent the Soybean Forum on the Oilseeds Advisory Committee.

    The Chairperson thanked everybody for the trust placed in him and he also mentioned that it will be his last term.


    1. That it be noted that Mr Jozeph du Plessis was duly elected as Chairperson of the Sunflower, Soybean and Soyfood Forum, for a second term.

      Mr Du Plessis

  18. Date of next meeting

    The next meeting is scheduled for 28 January 2021.

  19. Adjournment

    There being no further business for discussion, the meeting was adjourned at 13h10.