South African maize farmers are forecast to have planted 6% more hectares of the staple crop for the 2020/2021 season boosted by favourable weather conditions and higher maize price, the government’s Crop Estimates Committee (CEC) said on Thursday.
The CEC pegs the area at 2.777 million hectares of maize in the 2020/21 farming season, compared to the 2.611 million hectares planted last season.
“The production is very favourable and the prices are good,” the CEC said.
The CEC estimates 1.702 million hectares of white maize, used for human consumption, and 1.075 million hectares of yellow maize used mainly in animal feed to have been planted.
The government’s estimate is on par with a Reuters poll of five traders and analysts that pegged the area planted at 2.78 million hectares of maize.