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KZN floods to send food prices sky-rocketing



The impact of the KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) floods is expected to hurt consumers’ pockets as food prices will likely increase, so says Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister, Thoko Didiza.

This is because the destruction caused by the heavy downpours in KZN has also affected the agricultural sector. Farms have experienced some severe damage, including to critical infrastructure like buildings and irrigation systems. In addition, roads leading to farms and the transportation of goods have been impacted.

“We might see some prices going up in some commodities. In terms of the movement of the agricultural goods, we are confident. There is still no access to the roads leading to some of the farms. Those still need to be fixed so that with no delay we can move food for replanting,” Didiza said on eNCA.

YOU CAN ALSO READ: KZN Floods: African Union donates over R2 million in solidarity

KZN FLOODS: NO FOOD SHORTAGES ANTICIPATED

While Didiza has acknowledged the bearing the KZN floods has also had on the farming sector, she has allayed fears of a possible food shortage domestically, as a result of the disaster.

“From the assessment that we’ve made, we are not going to have food shortages. We are confident that we have enough,” she also told the broadcaster.

Meanwhile, the South African Farmers Development Agency (Safda) says farmers have also lost millions of rands.

Safda executive chairperson Siyabonga Madlala says farmers reported a total loss of crop as soil erosion took place in their fields and resources they keep on their farms like fertiliser and chemicals. Madlala adds that the estimated cost of repairing damaged infrastructure amounts to at least R42 million.

“To date we have recorded a total of 1 537.4 hectares of cane and cash crops having been eroded. At an estimated cost of R32 000 of replant per hectare, this accounts for a total of R49 196 800, as we have confirmed that almost all affected fields need to be replanted as a result of waterlogging killing the roots,”

Safda executive chairperson Siyabonga Madlala

YOU CAN ALSO READ: ‘Politicians who steal KZN relief funds WILL be arrested’ – Bheki Cele



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