Declared | Alert level 4 of Lockdown restrictions in South Africa will result in limited market for primary product
About two weeks ago the government of South Africa announced that the country is now in the third wave of COVID-19. This follows the growing number of infections which have been recorded at the rate of about 13 000 to 18 000 cases per day for the past week. On Sunday, 27 June, president Ramaphosa declared that the country is now at alert level 4 of lockdown restrictions.
For the agrifood sector, this means alcohol ban, closure of sit-in restaurant services. Inter provincial travel from Gauteng to other provinces is prohibited except for essential services.
As it has been the case in this past, partial closure of restaurants will result in limited food distribution by primary producers. The travel ban will also negatively affect the tourism and hospitality industries. These are also key buyers of agricultural primary products. Thus while primary production is considered an essential service in general, losses will be experienced by this industry due to limited access to market.
Meanwhile the vaccine roll-out programme is still in progress, but at a slow pace compared to some parts of the world. By mid June 2021, about 2.5 million people out of the targeted 40 million had been vaccinated. South Africa has an estimated total population of about 60 million people.