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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...

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Transformation Lab in action

In this blog post, Laura Pereira explains the idea of a ‘Transformation Lab’ (T-lab). T-labs are being used in the Pathways Network project in 6 countries to try to enable socio-ecological transformations. In the post, Laura uses an example of a completed T-lab from the GRAID...

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Support legislation to reduce food waste

FoodForward SA is an organisation that drives food banks. Essentially, they collect edible surplus food from manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers, and then redistribute this food to verified NPOs that collectively feed thousands of hungry people daily. In conjunction with Werksmans Attorneys and the CSIR, they...

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Food waste increases as people go hungry

by Dr Scott Drimie, view this article, originally posted in Business Day, here.  It’s absurd to think that farmers today produce about 50% more food than is necessary to feed the world’s population yet hunger remains such a pervasive issue in so many parts of the...

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South Africa Has The Lowest Rate Of Exclusive Breastfeeding In The World

Dr Scott Drimie is Director of the Southern Africa Food Lab. Though touted in social media as something of a women’s lib issue; the importance of support for breastfeeding mothers goes far beyond that. At under 8%, South Africa has the lowest rate of exclusive breastfeeding (EBF)...

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Retailers must step up to the plate on food security

In a country where malnutrition and inequality are rife, retailers must embrace the challenge to sell the same products at prices that are more broadly affordable if their businesses are to succeed into the future. In fact, addressing poverty – which affects more than a...

WORKSHOP REPORT: Shifting the Food System

The Southern Africa Food Lab’s Workshop on Shifting the Food System in November was an exploration of a diverse group’s perceptions of the South African food system at which insights and expertise were shared,  coalescing around areas of interest and passion, as potential catalysts and...

Shared visions for the future of food

New research on the rising cost of food gives the issue an alarmingly visceral dimension, write Ralph Hamman, Scott Drimie and Eckhard Smuts....

Western Cape organic and agro-ecological groups unite

In a significant moment last Saturday, members of the Western Cape farming community and broader agricultural industry joined together to endorse the South African Organic Sector Organisation’s (SAOSO) proposed Organic Standards....

Solve hunger, solve poverty

In a nation fraught with food insecurity, smallholder farmers have an important role to play; we provide food for the local communities and we provide employment, reducing rural poverty....