Commercial farming plays a large role in South Africa, from ensuring food security to boosting the economy. However, without a clear picture of the industry, it is difficult to create policy or attract investors.
Statistics South Africa has embarked on a countrywide census on commercial agriculture to collect data. The fact-finding mission will run until June 2019.
Adriaan Hendricks Brits has farmed on Bronkhorstspruit land for more than three decades.
“I’ve been farming here since 1985. That’s almost 33 years. I do hay and goat, supply feeders to customers as well.”
Drought and global warming are just some of the challenges Brits faces.
“We went through that. We learned how to work without rain. Safety is also another issue.”
In a drive to understand the sector better, Stats SA has embarked on Census 2018, deploying 600 field staff across the country.
The data will assist in agriculture planning and the formation of a new policy. The initiative has been welcomed by the farmers.
Farmers have been urged to co-operate with the census teams. Confidentiality is guaranteed.