Wandile Sihlobo, an agricultural economist and head of agribusiness at the Agricultural Business Chambe, said South Africa planted 491600 hectares of wheat in the 2017/18 season, which was less than the 508365ha planted a season ago.
The smaller area planted and the drought would result in less wheat being harvested during the current season.
“The winter wheat harvest is virtually over in South Africa, with the exception of the eastern parts of the Free State province, which is in the final stages of the process.
“South Africa’s wheat production is estimated at 1.48million tons, down by 23percent from the 2016 harvest due to poor yields in the Western Cape and parts of the Free State provinces. However, this is not a final estimate; an update will be released on January 30,” Sihlobo said.