Agbiz congress: Hopes are high for industry solutions

Over the next few days, over 400 delegates will attend the annual Agbiz congress. CEO Theo Boshoff is grateful for a full schedule of industry leaders to help them navigate through issues from energy and logistics to policy shifts and the economy

Agbiz Congress 2022 is one of the major events on the food, feed, fibre and beverage sectors’ agenda in South Africa. This year's congress is hoped to imagine solutions to key challenges the sector is facing. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

Agbiz Congress 2022 is one of the major events on the food, feed, fibre and beverage sectors’ agenda in South Africa. This year's congress is hoped to imagine solutions to key challenges the sector is facing. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

Top role players in agriculture will come together with great expectation at this year’s Agbiz congress. The event, one of the biggest on Mzansi’s agri calendar, promises to imagine solutions to the sector’s key challenges and forge crucial partnerships, Agbiz CEO Theo Boshoff says.

The congress runs from 22 to 24 June, and kicked off this morning with some fun on the Lost City golf course. Over the next few days, more than 400 delegates are expected to make their way to Sun City in North West, where the event is being hosted.

According to Boshoff, they plan to take the next few days to reflect on South Africa’s socio-economic challenges, focusing on agriculture and agribusiness.

Agbiz CEO Theo Boshoff. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

“We will also use this opportunity to imagine the solutions to our challenges and forge partnerships crucial for rebuilding businesses and our communities,” Boshoff says.

With the theme “Building resilient and sustainable agri-food ecosystems”, the congress will also be a key forum for identifying the next decades’ critical developments if South Africa is to ensure that agri-food value chains are managed sustainably for future generations.

The programme will include a mixture of international and local speakers, dedicated sessions, and lively discussions and debates on the challenges that impact global agricultural value chains.

“We are privileged to have a full schedule of distinguished speakers, policymakers and business leaders that will help us navigate issues from energy, economy, leadership, logistics, and agricultural policy to agricultural technology, among various themes,” says Boshoff.

Strategies to implement master plan

The plenary session starts in the morning of Thursday, 23 June, with a keynote address from Dr Kgosientso Ramokgopa, the head of investment in the Presidency and head of Infrastructure South Africa.

The session will be followed by presentations and discussion panels on South Africa’s energy challenges, the economy, market access and more. In the afternoon parallel panel discussions focusing on horticulture, grains, oilseeds and livestock, and agro-processing will take place.

On Friday, 24 June, the plenary session continues with geopolitics, key global risks and innovation talks on the agenda. This will be followed by the Agbiz annual general meeting.

Agbiz chief economist Wandile Sihlobo. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

Wandile Sihlobo, Agbiz chief economist, says they are looking forward to the breakaway session. “This will help us reflect on the recently launched Agriculture and Agro-processing Master Plan, a social compact approach for driving inclusive growth and job creation.

“The outcome of these breakaway sessions will help us formulate views and strategies for implementing the master plan, which is the next phase of this process that social partners will engage.”

Meanwhile, as an exciting service to the agri-food industry, Agbiz Congress 2022 is set also to provide agribusinesses and their input suppliers an opportunity to showcase their latest products and services as exhibitors in the trade exhibition.

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