Namibia exports 424t of inaugural soft citrus and grapefruit in Q1 '23

September 14, 2023

Minister of Agriculture, Water, and Land Reform, Calle Schlettwein, has revealed that Namibia exported its inaugural soft citrus and grapefruit shipments in the first quarter of 2023, valued at N$15 million (424 tonnes), with zero rejections.

"Another noteworthy achievement is the increasing access of Namibian producers to global markets. In 2022, 36% of agronomy and horticulture local production, primarily consisting of horticultural products such as grapes, onions, tomatoes, sweet peppers, butternuts, dates, blueberries, and watermelons, were exported to international markets," the minister said on Thursday.

Schlettwein noted that blueberry production is also on the rise, with 71 hectares already in production at the Mashare Irrigation Project and Komsberg along the Orange River, with further expansion plans.

"There is a new development of 50 hectares of blueberries taking place at Divundu, with 500 hectares targeted to be developed over a period of 10 years. This expansion will broaden the reach of proudly Namibian products in the international market. Namibia has a distinct advantage in international markets, as our unique climatic conditions afford us the opportunity to enter the market two weeks ahead of schedule," he said.

He said the growth in export produce, besides contributing export revenues, will create jobs.

"The production and export of high-value fruits not only bring foreign earnings to the country but also provide employment opportunities for our youth. The Government will continue to strengthen policies and programs to boost agronomy and horticulture production, processing, storage, and marketing," he said.

Schlettwein also revealed that the country’s maize grain imports had reduced by 52% as a result of the successful 2022 harvest.

"On a more positive note, the 2022 harvesting and marketing season witnessed a historic milestone for Namibia, with a record-breaking harvest of 98,824 tonnes of white maize grain, thus reducing imports by 52%," he said.

However, amidst these achievements, challenges loom on the horizon.

"Namibia's food self-sufficiency rate for staple crops like white maize, pearl millet (mahangu), and wheat is projected to drop by 26% for the 2023 harvesting season, a significant decrease from the 38% recorded in 2022," the minister said.

He attributed the primary cause to the severe drought experienced during the 2022/23 planting season, particularly affecting dryland crops.

"These challenges, coupled with high input costs, have strained crop value chain actors, resulting in a surge in agricultural input costs by over 30%, impacting consumer product prices," Schlettwein said.


Namibia’s agricultural sector posted a 2.6% growth in 2022 compared to 1.3% in 202.



Rate this item
(0 votes)
Last modified on Friday, 15 September 2023 15:47

Joomla! Debug Console


Profile Information

Memory Usage

Database Queries