Concern over dwindling number of commercial farmers
The agriculture economic transformation strategy which is hoped to push up the province's struggling GDP is the department's latest solution to countering the declining number of commercial farmers in the province.
Attributing the province's low agriculture value to competitiveness, policy uncertainty and increasing production costs, Qoboshiyane said that he was mostly concerned about the dwindling number of commercial farmers.
"The reality of the situation is that between 95% and 99% of agricultural output is produced by commercial farmers," Qoboshiyane said.
Helping small farmers access big retailers
In an effort to help small farmers, he said they would be added on the department's database and their products would be graded before being supplied to Boxer Superstores, Nicks Food, and McCain Foods.
While all Boxer supermarkets in the country are prepared to buy fresh produce from the Eastern Cape, Qoboshiyane said the province now needed more farmers to meet the new demand.