, 2022-12-20 05:56:50,
South Africa is a major agricultural producer and exporter (with a record $12.4bn in exports in 2021) and creates hundreds of thousands of jobs. The agricultural industry thus plays an essential role in the country’s economy. But it’s also heavily reliant on resources such as energy, water, nutrients, soil and natural cycles; this amid the challenges of feeding a growing population against the impacts of climate change.
We need urgent new innovations in agriculture and food production that can help increase agricultural productivity while reducing its associated environmental impacts.
It’s this need for sustainable transformation that dictates some of the top trends I predict in agriculture in 2023.
1. A greater understanding of circular agriculture
Circular agriculture centres on a regenerative system, focusing on producing agricultural commodities using minimal external inputs, closing nutrient loops, regenerating soils, and minimising the environmental impact.
The South African agriculture sector has already implemented some circular economy interventions, and I predict that there are many more to follow. The truth is that we have to do it. If we continue focusing on short-term efficiency gains and follow a resource-intensive, linear growth path, we will ultimately put our national food security at risk. On the other hand, an approach based on circular economy principles has the potential to make agricultural businesses more economically viable,…
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