Finweek English Edition - - Techtrends -

has grown into a re­spected, pro­gres­sive agri­cul­tural or­gan­i­sa­tion with sound core val­ues, a clear busi­ness phi­los­o­phy and a fu­ture-ori­en­tated vi­sion over the past 100 years. “Suid­wes is def­i­nitely one of the lead­ing agri­cul­tural busi­nesses in South Africa,” says Suid­wes Grain GM Jerry Maritz. “The defin­ing fea­tures of the cur­rent macroe­co­nomic en­vi­ron­ment are the huge price in­creases for cer­tain com­modi­ties and the global eco­nomic and fi­nan­cial cri­sis, which prob­a­bly reached its peak in sec­ond half 2008. Though that also had a neg­a­tive ef­fect on Suid­wes’s busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment we suc­ceeded in manag­ing the im­pact to a cer­tain ex­tent and es­cap­ing it.”

Suid­wes has shown ex­cep­tional growth over the past 10 years, not only in prof­itabil­ity but also in the field of re­la­tions with its stake­hold­ers and other links in the value chain, risk man­age­ment, good cor­po­rate gov­er­nance and the es­tab­lish­ment of skills, Maritz says. “Those fac­tors are cru­cial for sur­viv­ing the cur­rent re­ces­sion, as well as the ups and downs of the busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment for the next 100 years.”

Since be­ing founded in 1909, Suid­wes has been an im­por­tant link in the value chain for food pro­duc­ers. How­ever, Maritz says that value chain isn’t only im­por­tant for agribusi­nesses but also for pro­duc­ers and, ul­ti­mately, ef­fi­cient agri­cul­tural pro­duc­tion. “Agri­cul­tural pro­duc­tion is ex­tremely im­por­tant for eco­nomic growth and sta­bil­ity – food as well as fi­bre. In ad­di­tion, agri­cul­ture is a ma­jor em­ployer and earner of for­eign ex­change for SA.”

Maritz says pri­mary farm­ing has long been a value-adding link in the food pro­duc­tion process. “With freer trade and com­pe­ti­tion in the global mar­ket en­vi­ron­ment this process is sub­ject to more and more in­flu­ences and re­quire­ments – and that’s Agri­cul­tural pro­duc­tion is ex­tremely im­por­tant for eco­nomic growth why pro­duc­ers, in­put sup­pli­ers and food pro­ces­sors and mar­keters should op­er­ate in a part­ner­ship re­la­tion.”

Suid­wes Grain spe­cialises in grain han­dling and mar­ket­ing. Suid­wes’s grain si­los com­ply with the stan­dards and pro­ce­dures set by food safety leg­is­la­tion. The au­dit­ing and cer­ti­fy­ing of si­los in terms of the strict HACCP re­quire­ments there­fore en­sure ex­cep­tional value for SA pro­ces­sors and con­sumers in terms of food safety and hy­giene.

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