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Small farm, big impact

Small farm, big impact

Whether farming on one hectare or 100, the basic principles remain the same and hard work and dedication ensure results. Small scale farmer Nelly Thabisile Lubisi says being an example to her children that there is money in farming is what pushes her to...

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Irrigation farmer uses crop diversity to manage growth

Irrigation farmer uses crop diversity to manage growth

Building a successful business from sugarcane farming right now in South Africa, according to new generation farmer Dirk Novais, requires a fine balancing act between diversification, cash flow management and growth, while keeping debt levels as low as possible. At...

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Cane cutter health a priority

Cane cutter health a priority

Vulnerable to abuse and yet without question one of the most important contributors to the health of South Africa’s sugar industry, cane cutters are the unsung ‘samurais’ of the country’s agricultural sector, and their health and nutrition should be a...

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Government leadership key to turnaround plan

Government leadership key to turnaround plan

Despite South Africa’s sugar-producing industry continuing to stagger under a tsunami of adverse market conditions, the managing director of Illovo Sugar, Mamongae Mahlare, believes there are glimmers of hope, which could see the start of a turnaround...

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Managing risk with the right attitude

Managing risk with the right attitude

Prevailing uncertainties in the sugar industries necessitate a relook at the farming business, its future, and mitigation factors that can be put in place today to ensure the future of the enterprise tomorrow.The past few years in the sugar industry have...

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Pongola seedcane to boost small-scale yields

Pongola seedcane to boost small-scale yields

With about R140 000 000 in funding from the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and SA Canegrowers, a 3ha plot of certified N36 seedcane was planted up in April outside Pongola by the region’s small-scale growers and the association’s regional...

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A tough milling year forces RCL FOODS to adapt

A tough milling year forces RCL FOODS to adapt

The sugar industry has had a trying year with farmers and millers bearing the brunt of cheap sugar imports.In this question and answer interview, Derek van Niekerk, director of sugar at RCL FOODS’ Sugar & Milling division gives an overview of the...

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Gathering of women in the business of sugar

Gathering of women in the business of sugar

The business of sugarcane farming was under discussion at the inaugural SA Canegrowers Women’s Sugar Conference held recently at their headquarters outside Durban. The scores of women who packed out the event were treated to top speakers and topics relating to the...

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Prominent sugarcane leader puts her land and community first

Prominent sugarcane leader puts her land and community first

Sezela smallscale grower calls on women to step into leadership roles to drive change and development in sugarcane farming communities across rural KwaZulu-Natal. As a child, Rejoice Makhosazana Ncwane was already well versed in the skills of sugarcane farming and...

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How to grow sugarcane roadmap ups the game

How to grow sugarcane roadmap ups the game

The brains behind the ground-breaking Umoba smallscale booklet, from left, development officers at the Noodsberg mill Charity Mdletshe and Busi Sokhela; Cane Development Manager at the mill Fanie Horn, and Cane Development Administration Officer Kantha...

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Illovo Millennial Board an industry first

Illovo Millennial Board an industry first

Picture above: The members of Illovo Sugar Africa's first Millennial Board and their elected office bearers are, from left back:  Matome Kgomommu, Matthew Edmonds, Egidio Bahule, Chikumbutso Malopa, Faith Chaba Chewe, Precious Chiwaya and from left front, Khumbo...

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A tough milling year forces RCL FOODS to adapt

A tough milling year forces RCL FOODS to adapt

The sugar industry has had a trying year with farmers and millers bearing the brunt of cheap sugar imports  In this question and answer interview, Derek van Niekerk, director of sugar at RCL FOODS’ Sugar & Milling division gives an overview of the season and...

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Welcome 2019

Welcome 2019

Welcome to 2019 and may we take this opportunity to wish you all a prosperous and successful year ahead from the team at the Shukela magazine.Before we get into what lies ahead for the publication this year, we thank everyone in South Africa’s sugar industry who...

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Turning sugar cane into high quality rum

Turning sugar cane into high quality rum

A stagnating mine and a bit of land planted to sugar cane has opened the way for Malelane engineer, Robert Greaves to use his skills and resources to produce South Africa’s first rum made from sugar cane juice. The rum, called Mhoba Rum, is made in the agricole...

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Researcher looks to grow sugar yields for smallholders

Researcher looks to grow sugar yields for smallholders

Increasing the yields of sugarcane production on smallscale farms in KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga to promote the crop as a primary source of income in rural areas is now the focus of South African Farmers’ Development Association researcher, Tshepo Pilusa. Tshepo...

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SA Canegrowers Builds Transformation and Financial Inclusion

SA Canegrowers Builds Transformation and Financial Inclusion

The creation of an organisation aimed at assisting black South African sugar cane farmers and ensuring a “better future” for them was announced at the 2018 annual meeting of SA Canegrowers (SACG) in Durban. Breaking the news of the significant development, SACG...

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Industry young bloods ready to boost KZN North Coast growers

Industry young bloods ready to boost KZN North Coast growers

Glantine Mashile, the newly appointed SA Canegrowers Senior Regional Manager on the KwaZulu-Natal North Coast with his team, Senior Agricultural Business Advisor in Amatikulu Thembeka Mtetwa (left), Agricultural Business Advisor for Small Scale Growers in the region...

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Back to school decision led to sweet endings for sugar man

Back to school decision led to sweet endings for sugar man

The story of Tongaat Hulett chemical engineer Fred Mncube, who was awarded the Cecil Renaud Prize at the South African Sugar Technologists Association Conference in 2017, is one of courage and determination resulting in triumph and success in the face of adversity....

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Tapping into teamwork roots “huge” grower project

Tapping into teamwork roots “huge” grower project

Just a stone’s throw from the Illovo Sugar (South Africa) Noodsberg Mill, valleys of pristine sugarcane fields are producing top yields for smallscale growers and contractors alike, as a plan to develop sustainable sugarcane farming in the deep rural areas of the...

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New Coastals Eston store hits the sweet spot

New Coastals Eston store hits the sweet spot

Just months after opening its doors, the newly renovated Coastals Eston store is proving a hit with both its staff and the surrounding farming community. Whether it’s cat food, cane knives or a warm coat, the store has it all, and according to Branch Manager, Una...

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Drip irrigation for simplified management

Drip irrigation for simplified management

Water, electricity and labour.  These are among the factors with the biggest impact on the success and profitability of an irrigation farm.  On the downside, water use for irrigation is becoming more of an issue and electricity and labour costs are ever increasing. ...

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Progressive ratoon management a top priority for Eston farmer

Progressive ratoon management a top priority for Eston farmer

Come rain or shine, says sugarcane grower Ryan Döhne, investing in the latest technologies to ensure optimum crop health throughout the year is a non-negotiable management strategy on the family farm outside Eston in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. Despite the external...

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