Africa: The Land of Milk and Honey, and... Entrepreneurs

Sponsored by FNB Agriculture


Africa is a continent full of resources and opportunities. With the economic landscape in Southern Africa showing great promise, new industries are emerging, existing ones growing stronger and entrepreneurship flourishing. What does this mean to the produce industry? How can the supply chain take advantage of the benefits associated with such growth? 

“The African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) came into force on 30 May 2019. Whilst a lot of details are still pending before the AfCFTA will come into practice, the topic needs to be addressed and the market place understood,” says Lindie Stroebel, General Manager of the Produce Marketing Association (PMA) for Southern Africa. 

“The 9th PMA Fresh Connections: Southern Africa Conference and Trade Show, to be hosted on 30 and 31 July 2019 at the Century City Conference Centre in Cape Town, will dedicate a session on the opportunities and challenges in doing business on the African continent.  This session, sponsored by FNB Agriculture, will provide a glimpse into this economic wheelhouse and the abundance of opportunities on the horizon for the fresh fruit and vegetable industry,” says Stroebel. 

This is the second consecutive year that FNB Agriculture is sponsoring the Africa session at PMA Fresh Connections: Southern Africa.  Speakers in this session are Dawie Maree (FNB Agriculture), Dr Rutendo Hwindingwi (Deloitte) and Sean Moolenschot (Savenda Global Capital Partners).

FNB Agriculture’s head of communication and marketing, Dawie Maree says, “Africa's agricultural potential can only be unlocked by the availability and affordability of adequate levels of finance across the entire value chain. This requires a comprehensive approach. An assessment of the value chain must be conducted to establish the key areas and stakeholders where finance will most efficiently add value. Understanding the risks, growth potential and where to most effectively invest in the value chain, are key success factors that underpin FNB’s strategy in unlocking value in Africa’s agriculture.” 

The 2018 PMA Africa conference highlighted the potential for fresh fruit and vegetables in Zambia.  Savenda Global Capital Partners seized the opportunity and within 12 months they launched the ZAMBIAFresh Lusaka Market.  Sean Moolenschot, CEO of Savenda Global Capital Partners says, “We are delighted to announce the launch of ZAMBIAFresh Lusaka Market, the first commission-agent and formal fresh produce market in Zambia, and the rest of Africa.   Our Zambia market will offer a new and distinctive fresh market food hub experience and create a unique market model providing sustainable solutions to the fragmented African small-scale horticultural sector.  Through innovative partnerships and an end-to-end value-chain approach we have created version 2.0 for fresh produce markets in Africa.”

Dr Rutendo Hwindingwi, associate director at Deloitte, and also known as the ‘African realist’, will take the audience through an exciting journey of how to successfully navigate through the African business landscape. 

“There is an African proverb that says 'The Jungle is Stronger than the Elephant’. In other words, understanding the territory and adjusting your strategy to adapt to it is key for any business wanting to survive in any environment. The 'African Business Jungle' has changed over the years with the continued increase in penetration levels of technology through the 4th Industrial Revolution. Like all industries, the agricultural industry has also been disrupted with the changes due to innovation,” explains Dr Hwindingwi.

In another session, Johan van Deventer, Managing Director at Freshmark, a division of Shoprite Checkers, will share their experiences as the biggest retailer in Africa that did ground breaking work in establishing itself throughout the continent. It did come at a cost, and they are still faced with ongoing challenges in trading fresh produce in the respective and diversified African countries. Van Deventer will explain the benefits, trading in the continent, presented to their business in the fresh industry, as well as to the continent at large. 

“PMA Fresh Connections: Southern Africa provides opportunity for stakeholders in the entire fresh produce value chain to learn from the most knowledgeable people about doing business in our amazing continent,” Stroebel concluded.

For more information and to register as attendee, visit our website on


The Produce Marketing Association (PMA) is a trade organisation representing companies from every segment of the global fresh produce and floral supply chain. PMA helps members grow by providing connections that expand business opportunities and increase sales and consumption. PMA has a unique network of contacts from member companies based in 95 countries across six continents. These contacts span all sizes and types of businesses across the supply chain.

Sean.jpg Dr Rutendo.JPG Dawie Maree.jpg
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Issue 46


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