Grain lobby groups split along racial lines?


The grain industry appears to be divided along racial lines following the recent formation of the SA Grain Farmers’ Association (Sagra).

Jannie de Villiers, executive director of Grain SA, which has represented the industry in the past, believes it’s bad news for unity in the sector.

Acting chair of Sagra and former Grain SA deputy chair, Victor Mongoato, said the new organisation had been formed to fill a void created by similar organisations and their supposed inability to represent the needs of previously under or un-represented farmers and related workers. It has already signed up 800 members

“It’s not an exclusive organisation based on race”, he said.

“It will look after the missing middle’s interest.”

Mongoata said it has not been decided yet whether Sagra will become affiliated to the African Farmers’ Association of SA, and that it was up to members of the new organisation to remain affiliated to Grain SA or not.

Commenting on the move, De Villiers said: “On the one side everyone tries to establish unity so we can move forward, and now this has happened. Divided we have less influence to state our case.”


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