Vrystaat Landbou ernstig bekommerd oor beurtkrag

“Vrystaat Landbou (VL) spreek sy ernstige kommer uit oor die jongste vlaag beurtkrag, omdat dit onder meer groot negatiewe gevolge op voedselsekerheid het. Ons doen ook ’n beroep op die regering om die probleem ’n eerste prioriteit te maak en spoedig aan te spreek.” Só sê Francois Wilken, President van VL, nadat beurtkrag weer regoor Suid-Afrika ingestel is.

Hy meen landbouers en verskaffers bly aan die verloorkant en beurtkrag kan “katastrofiese gevolge vir voedselproduksie en die landbousektor inhou.” Eskom het op 16 Oktober 2019 fase 2-beurtkrag begin toepas en dit het op 17 Oktober 2019 voortgeduur.

Volgens Wilken is koring byvoorbeeld in ’n baie sensitiewe stadium wat bestuiwing betref. “Landbouers wat gewasse besproei is nou twee maal per dag aan beurtkrag blootgestel en dit het ’n potensiële negatiewe impak op die optimale groei, veral in die huidige warm toestande wat oor groot dele van die land heers.”

Wilken sê VL doen ’n ernstige beroep op die regering om af te sien van politieke populisme. Hy meen die regering moet eerder toesien dat, in die lig van die geweldige probleme wat Eskom met kragopwekking ondervind, ’n meer gematigde benadering teenoor onafhanklike kragvoorsieners gevolg word.

“Dié voorsieners moet ook toegelaat word om die nodige elektrisiteit terug in die kragnetwerk te plaas en sodoende die probleme te probeer aanspreek.” Volgens hom blyk dit dat die huidige prosesse wat gevolg moet word om bogenoemde reg te kry heeltemal te omslagtig is.

“Die ekonomiese toestande in die land veroorsaak dat alle produsente negatief geraak word. Ongeag of beurtkrag voorkom of nie, die kostes vir infrastruktuur word steeds gehef. Maak nie saak of krag voorsien word of nie.”

Wilken sê boonop dra die ernstige droogte, wat in groot dele van die land voorkom, ook verder by tot negatiewe sentimente.

Free State Agriculture deeply concerned about load shedding

“Free State Agriculture (FSA) expresses its serious concern about the latest wave of load shedding, as this has, among other things, major negative effects on food security. We also call on the government to make the problem a first priority and to address it as soon as possible.” This is according to Francois Wilken, President of FSA, after load shedding was re-introduced across South Africa.

He believes farmers and suppliers remain on the losing side and load shedding could have “catastrophic consequences for food production and the agricultural sector.” Eskom began implementing Phase 2 load shedding on 16 October 2019 and it continued on 17 October 2019.

According to Wilken wheat is for example at a very sensitive stage when it comes to pollination. “Farmers who spray crops are now exposed to load shedding twice a day and this has a potential negative impact on the optimal growth of their crops, especially in the current hot conditions prevailing in large parts of the country.”

Wilken says FSA urges the government to refrain from political populism. It should rather ensure that, in light of the enormous problems Eskom is experiencing with power generation, a more moderate approach to independent power suppliers is being followed.

“These suppliers should also be allowed to put the necessary electricity back into the power grid and in this way problems can be addressed.”

According to him the current processes that need to be followed in order to achieve this seem to be too complicated. “The economic conditions in the country are causing all producers to be negatively affected.

Regardless of whether load shedding occurs or not, infrastructure costs are still being charged. No matter if power is provided or not.”

Wilken also says the severe drought, which continues in many parts of the country, also contributes to negative sentiment.

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