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Fostering coherence in food security policy

The Southern Africa Food Lab, in partnership with The Presidency, recently hosted a dialogue to foster coherence in South Africa food security policy. The dialogue was attended by 30 government officials and academics including representatives from DPME, DAFF, DCE, GDE, DBE, DEA, The Department of...

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Food Lab learnings presented at Harvard workshop

Ralph Hamann, Research Director at UCT’s Graduate School of Business and a member of the Southern Africa Food Lab’s advisory board, recently returned from a Harvard Workshop on Cross-Sector Innovation where he presented a paper based on the experiences of the Food Lab. “Through an indepth analysis...

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Food Lab’s smallholder work recognized by UN programme

The Southern Africa Food Lab’s work addressing smallholder development through dialogue and social innovation in the SA food system has been recognized by the UN’s 10-year framework of programmes (10YFP) on sustainable consumption and production patterns within their Sustainable Food Systems Programme. The project is now...

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Food policy and nutrition economics in the SDG era

The importance of nutrition in development is undisputed, and yet it is only in recent years that it has been taken seriously. Why is this? Professor Sheryl Hendricks recently explored this question in the Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa’s Tomlinson Commemorative Lecture at the University...

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Cheap meat comes at a cost

The identification of the source of the Listeriosis outbreak which has swept through the nation killing 180 people to date, has seen a wide-scale recall of polony, Russians and viennas over the past week. The outbreak, which the World Health Organization is calling the largest...

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National Seed Dialogue celebrates smallholder farmers

During December, the Food Lab participated in a national seed dialogue and celebration hosted by the African Centre for Biodiversity at Constitution Hill. The purpose of the event was to celebrate the role of smallholder farmers in maintaining and nurturing seed and life in South Africa...

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EXPLORING THE INFLUENCE OF THE FINANCE SECTOR ON AGRI-TRENDS

WWF-SA’s Resource Smart Food Initiative explores multiple points of intervention in the food system to determine actions that could shift the system onto a more sustainable trajectory. As a partner in the initiative, the Southern Africa Food Lab is assisting with the design and facilitation...

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Food Innovation Learning Journey

Later this month, the Southern Africa Food Lab will host thought leaders from the finance sector, insurance and investment on a learning journey regarding the nation’s future food system. The event, which is funded by the Green Trust and WWF-SA’s Smart Food Initiative, aims to build...

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SPAR South Africa seeks to improve access to affordable nutritious food

Increasingly, businesses, especially those in the food industry, are being called upon to help transform the food system to work better for nutrition. A key question being asked of organisations like SPAR is how do we make foods rich in nutrients more affordable and available,...

How adaptable are smallholder communities to the effects of climate change?

by Amy Giliam Climate change is identified as one of the major trends influencing change in the 21st century. In South Africa, climate change is and will continue to contribute to the severity and frequency of drought, flood events, and changes in temperatures and rainfall patterns....

Agroecology Awareness innovation debrief

This week the Southern Africa Food Lab hosted an Agroecology Awareness innovation debrief along with 17 Shaft Education & Conference Centre at the Hoedspruit Hub in the Mopani district, Limpopo. We met with 14 other organisations and 18 agroecology trainers. We discussed the future of this...

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Heart disease is among SA’s top killers

Dr Scott Drimie South Africa has a serious health problem. Non-communicable (NCDs) or lifestyle diseases are among the top causes of death in the country (at around 40%) and are responsible for considerable premature mortality with more than a third of NCD-related deaths occurring before the...

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Why smallholder farmer hubs help get to the roots of food security

by OWEN SKAE We hear constant talk about job creation, food security and a more equitable society. Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies speaks about improving and shortening regional value chains to bring down the cost of doing business and the cost of food, but little...

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The impact of city life on the nation’s health

Over the past two decades, South Africa has urbanized at a rapid pace as people move towards the cities in search of work opportunities and better living conditions, says Scott Drimie. This has had a real impact on our health. According to StatsSA, more than 70%...

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Struggling in the midst of plenty

Time for SA to restore the food imbalance, writes Dr Sandra Boatemaa. South Africa is noted for its diversity in race, culture, ethnic groups and beautiful landscapes. With this great diversity, history and accomplishments, the provision and access to basic food for a dignified standard of living...

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Real hunger is a devastating reality

Studies show that many South Africans battle to put food on the table. Nomonde Mxhalisa writes about a project to help small farmers feed themselves and their communities. My earliest memory of hunger is not my own but my mother’s. I have my own often complicated relationship...

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SA’s new killing field could be in the supermarket grocery aisle

TATJANA VON BORMANN AND BRIDGET CARLE Since 1994, the South African diet has changed rapidly. Today more fizzy drinks, processed foods, meat, total kilojoules and fewer vegetables are being consumed – and the price is being paid for it in terms of health. There has been a...

Food Security Initiative welcomes first postdoc

The Food Security Initiative based in Stellenbosch University’s Faculty of AgriSciences has welcomed its first postdoctoral researcher. Dr Sandra Boatemaa will be researching matters related to food systems governance in Southern Africa. It is a challenge that Dr Boatemaa is looking forward to. She previously worked...