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COVID-19 Agricultural Disaster Fund Under the Spotlight

May 19, 2020

Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development

The outcome of the COVID-19 Agricultural Disaster Fund application process has been announced.

The smallholder and communal farmers’ application process opened on 8 April and closed on 22 April 2020.

The fund intervention of R1,2 billion aims to address the effects of COVID-19 and ensure sustainable food production post the pandemic.

According to the agriculture, land reform and rural development department, 33 000 manual application forms were distributed via provincial and district offices, commodity and civil society organisations.

The agriculture, land reform and rural development minister, Thoko Didiza, indicated that, so far, 15036 applications have been approved valued at just over R500 million in favour of smallholder and communal farmers.

The minister added that the department will finalise its decision on the remaining applications in the next week.

She also called on farmer organisations to assist farmers in formalising their operations, especially in so far as record-keeping is concerned.

“It saddens me that during this process many of them fell by the sideway because they could not provide proof that they are farmers or farming. The registration of farmers on the Producer Farmer Register will enable government to locate farmers so that targeted support can be provided”.

Meanwhile, the Wine and Spirit Board published three defining of production area notices in Government Gazette 43316:

• Notice 55 – Defining of Production Area: Elandskloof/Kaaimansgat – Kaaimansgat declared as synonym for Elandskloof;
• Notice 56 – Defining of Production Area: Paardeberg/Perdeberg – Perdeberg declared as synonym for Paardeberg; and
• Notice 57 – Defining of Production Area: Vlootenburg.