UNIGRO and GroCapital suspend eAccounts fees during lockdown

Dear valued client,

31 March is UNIGRO and GroCapital Financial Services year-end and is usually the time of year when we communicate our fee increases to you. However, this year is anything but usual, and has called on us to make an unusual decision.

UNIGRO and GroCapital Financial Services is pleased to announce that it will suspend eAccounts fees for April 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown and delay its other fee increases until lockdown is over and things return to normality. We understand the severity of the lockdown and the task that lies ahead for farmers and food producers to continue to produce food for South Africa. We hope that this small gesture will alleviate some of your financial pressure. This zero eAccount fee could be extended should the lockdown endure for longer than 21 days, but you will be kept informed of developments.

For those customers not yet using the eAccounts system who would like to join, the same suspended fee structure applies.

We care about our customers and trust that you have all the necessary structures in place to look after yourself, your loved ones and those working in your business to ensure the critical functioning of food availability in South Africa.

Thank you for your support and for embracing food production in South Africa. We hope your free use of our eAccounts platform during this time will make your financial administration just a little bit easier.

 

Please be safe during this time

 

Kind regards

 

Ross Simmonds

MD, UNIGRO Financial Services

UNIGRO en GroCapital skrap eAccounts-fooie tydens afsonderingsperiode

Geagte kliënt,

 

UNIGRO en GroCapital Finansiële Dienste se boekjaar eindig 31 Maart en dit is normaalweg in hierdie tyd wat ons fooi-aanpassings aan u deurgee. Vanjaar is egter alles behalwe normaal en dit het ons genoop om ‘n buitengewone besluit te neem.

 

Dit is vir UNIGRO en GroCapital Finansiële Dienste aangenaam om te kan aankondig dat ons eAccounts-fooie vir April 2020 opgeskort het weens die afsonderingsperiode teen COVID-19. Die implementering van ander fooiverhogings word uitgestel totdat die afsonderingsperiode verby is en die situasie na normaal teruggekeer het. Ons het begrip vir die erns van die situasie en die taak wat vir boere en voedselverwerkers voorlê om voort te gaan met voedselproduksie vir Suid-Afrika. Ons hoop hierdie gebaar sal van jou finansiële druk verlig. Die afskaffing van eAccount-fooie kan verleng word, sou die afsonderingsperiode langer as 21 dae duur, maar sal u tydig daarvan in kennis gestel word.

 

Dieselfde fooistruktuur sal van krag wees aan ons kliënte wat nog nie die eAccounts-stelsel gebruik nie en graag wil aansluit.

 

Ons gee om vir ons kliënte en vertrou dat u die nodige strukture in plek het om na u geliefdes, werknemers en belange om te sien om volgehoue voedselsekerheid in Suid-Afrika te verseker.

 

Dankie vir u ondersteuning en u verbintenis tot voedselproduksie in Suid-Afrika. Ons hoop die gratis gebruik van ons eAccounts-platform gedurende hierdie tyd sal u finansiële bestuur ‘n bietjie makliker maak.

 

Wees asseblief veilig gedurende hierdie tyd

 

Beste wense

 

Ross Simmonds

Besturende Direkteur, UNIGRO Financial Services

Brief Aan Kliente

25 Maart 2020

 

Geagte kliënt,

 

 

Suid-Afrika gaan vanaf Vrydag 27 Maart 2020 (vanaf Donderdagaand om middernag) in algehele afsondering om die verspreiding van die nuwe koronavirus te probeer stuit. Die verpligte afsondering sal vir 21 dae van krag wees (“die afsonderingsperiode”).

 

 

Gedurende hierdie tyd moet alle besighede en dienste sluit, behalwe vir die beperkte lys ondernemings wat vrygestel is, omrede dit as noodsaaklik geag word vir die gesondheid en veiligheid van Suid-Afrikaners (“vrygestelde besighede en dienste”).

 

 

Die vrygestelde besighede en dienste sluit in:

 

  • Landbou- en voedselverwante bedrywighede, boerdery, veeartsenykundige dienste en fitosanitêre verskaffers, plaagbeheerdienste, chemiese – en kunsmisverskaffers.

 

  • Vervaardigers en prosesseringsfasiliteite van voedselprodukte, drinkbare vloeistof en noodsaaklike produkte.

 

  • Pakhuise, vervoer en logistiek van voedsel, noodsaaklike produkte en gesondheidsverwante goedere.

 

  • Hawens, sowel as pad- en spoornetwerke sal oop bly om die in- en uitvoer van noodsaaklike produkte te fasiliteer.

 

  • Afsetpunte van voedsel – klein- en groothandelaars, spaza-winkels en inkopiesentrums vir voedsel en noodsaaklike produkte.

 

  • Kritiese bank- en finansiële dienste.

 

 

Hoewel ons wag vir die gepubliseerde gedetailleerde regulasies in terme van die Wet op Rampbestuur, is dit duidelik dat die hele voedselwaardeketting as ‘n noodsaaklike bedryf beskou word, en deel is van die vrygestelde besighede en dienste.

 

 

Die AFGRI Groep, insluitend sy filiale, is deel van die groter voedselwaardeketting.

 

 

Daarvolgens sal die volgende besighede en dienste in die AFGRI Groep operasioneel bly tydens die afsonderingsperiode:

 

 

  1. Alle graansilo’s en -bunkers

 

  1. Alle AFGRI Meganisasietakke en dienste

 

  1. Alle UNIGRO finansiële dienste, insluitend e-Accounts

 

  1. Alle voedselverwerking en vervaardigingsfasiliteite, insluitend AFGRI Veevoere en AFGRI Meulens

 

  1. Hinterland (AFGRI Town and Country) handelstakke.

 

 

Ons werknemers sal toegelaat word om te reis en hierdie dienste aan u te voorsien.

 

 

Ons sal te alle tye verantwoordelik en volgens die regulasies van die Wet op Rampbestuur optreel en indien die situasie verander, sal ons u kontak. Werknemers wie se teenwoordigheid by hul normale werksplek nie as noodsaaklik beskou word nie, sal van die huis af werk. Hetsy hulle van die huis of kantoor af werk, sal hulle steeds bereikbaar wees en poog om dieselfde dienste en produkte te lewer as waaraan u gewoond is.

 

 

Ons kliënte en werknemers se gesondheid en veiligheid is van kardinale belang. Dit is egter ook belangrik om te beklemtoon dat die AFGRI Groep van maatskappye, ons werknemers en ons kliënte deel is van die groter voedselwaardeketting, wat met rede as noodsaaklik beskou word in die land se stryd teen die Covid-19-pandemie. Dit is ‘n voorreg, maar ook ‘n reuse verantwoordelikheid.

 

 

Laastens, wil ons u verseker dat die AFGRI Groep oor die bedryfsplanne en menslike hulpbronne beskik om die nodige ondersteuning aan u, ons gewaardeerde kliënt, te bied in hierdie onseker tye.

 

 

Ons sal voortgaan om met u te kommunikeer oor enige verwikkelinge, insluitend op ons sosiale media-kanale en ons webtuiste.

 

Tinus Prinsloo

 

WNDE UITVOERENDE HOOF: AFGRI GROEP

#BullsFamily welcomes Jake White

The Blue Bulls Company are excited to confirm that Jake White has signed on as Director of Rugby and will be officially joining the #BullsFamily effective immediately until the 2023 World Cup.

The former Springbok coach and Rugby World Cup winner assumes the position vacated by Alan Zondagh, who stepped down earlier this year.

White has recently been coaching the Toyota Verblitz in Japan and joins the Vodacom Bulls with over four decades of coaching experience stretching back to the early 1980s. His global experience at the highest levels, particularly in Vodacom Super Rugby as the former head coach of both the Cell C Sharks and Brumbies, will benefit the Vodacom Bulls as they continue to add to their resources.

Blue Bulls Company CEO, Alfonso Meyer, shared his sentiments on White’s impending arrival.

“We are extremely excited with Jake’s decision to join us. His credentials speak for itself and we know his contributions are only going to improve our rugby across the board. Jake’s appointment is yet another step in the right direction as we endeavour to take this brand into a new era. We wish him well in his new role,” said Meyer.

White expressed his eagerness at getting the ball rolling, “The Vodacom Bulls brand has always been a powerhouse in rugby, and respected around the world. There’s a great history and heritage here, and I’m looking forward to adding my contribution to the Bulls’ legacy. The shareholders, Remgro, Patrice Motsepe and the BBRU, together with the staff, have an amazing ambition to not only take the Bulls back to number one, but also re-invent and re-mould the face of rugby in this country.”

White is a straight forward man, and didn’t sugar coat the need to start winning, “We need to re-build a winning culture at Loftus, and that will no doubt bring the fans back to their beloved Loftus Versfeld. This won’t be easy, but we are up for it.”

The former Bok coach is also keen to do his bit to indirectly contribute to the national setup, “It’s no secret that our franchise rugby needs to be strong for the Boks to be strong. I’m looking forward to doing whatever it takes help keep them at number one.”

To view or download our Jake White infographic, click here.

Draft Essential and Critical Business Continuity Services during lockdown.pdf

View or download the document here.

STATEMENT BY PRESIDENT CYRIL RAMAPHOSA ON ESCALATION OF MEASURES TO COMBAT COVID-19 EPIDEMIC

View or download the statement here.

Grain Management Communication

Dear customer

AFGRI Grain Management’s grain services and grain trading will continue during the COVID-19 lockdown.

We are aligned with the statement of President Ramaphosa on March 23, 2020, and as part of the agro food value chain, will continue to operate as outlined under the “Essential Services” definition, specifically “Food & essential products – related manufacturing and processing, and distribution”.

Please remember that access to accounts, grain contracts and supplies is available through our e-Accounts platform.

Further, given these trying times, we must strive to minimise exposure between our employees and our customers, so where possible, please communicate your needs by phone, email, WhatsApp or SMS to your Silo Manager and/or Grain Marketer.

For any queries, please contact your Silo Manager or Grain Marketer.

Stay healthy!

 

Communication from AFGRI Group Holdings during the lockdown period

Dear valued client

South Africa will go into a national lockdown on Friday, 27 March 2020 (immediately after midnight on Thursday) to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. The shutdown will last for 21 days (“the lockdown period”).

During that time, all businesses and services must shut down other than a list of exempted businesses that are considered critical to supporting the health and safety of South Africans (“exempted businesses and services”).

The exempted business and services include:

• Agricultural and food supply related operations, farming, veterinary and phytosanitary provider services, pest control services, and chemical and fertilizer providers.
• Food, beverages and essential products manufacturing and processing facilities.
• Warehousing, transport and logistics for food and essential products, and health-related goods.
• Ports, and road and rail networks will remain open in order to facilitate the import and export of essential products.
• Food outlets – retail, wholesale, spaza shops and malls for food and essential products.
• Critical banking and financial services.

Although we await the detailed regulations to be published in terms of the Disaster Management Act, it is clear that the entire agro-food value chain is considered an essential industry, and forms part of the Exempted Business and Services.

AFGRI Group Holdings, including its subsidiaries, forms part of the agro-food value chain.

Accordingly, the following businesses and services in the Group will continue operating during the lockdown period:
1. All grain silos and bunkers
2. All AFGRI Equipment branches and services
3. All UNIGRO financial services, including e-accounts;
4. All food processing and manufacturing facilities, including AFGRI Animal Feeds and AFGRI Milling
5. Hinterland (AFGRI Town and Country) retail branches

Our employees will be allowed to travel to provide these services to you.

We will continue to act lawfully and responsibly in accordance with the Disaster Management Act and its regulations and if anything changes we will contact you. Employees who are not deemed essential to be in the office or their normal place of work, will work from home. However, whether they work from home or from their normal workplace, they will continue to be contactable and provide you with the same services and products you are accustomed to.

Our clients’ and employees’ health and safety are paramount. It is also, however, important to appreciate the fact that the AFGRI Group of companies, our employees and our clients form part of the agro-food sector, which has rightfully been recognised as essential to the country fighting the Covid-19 pandemic. This is a privilege, but also a huge responsibility.

Lastly, we wish to ensure you that the Group has the operational plans and human resources necessary to support you, our valued client, in these trying times.

We will continue to keep you updated with regards to any developments, including on our social media channels and our website.

Tinus Prinsloo
Acting Group CEO

A Message to the Agriculture and Food Sector of South Africa

Speaking notes by Ms. Thoko Didiza, MP Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development

 

A Message to the Agriculture and Food Sector of South Africa
24 March 2020

 

As you may be aware, that last night the President announced measures to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, which include a 21-day lockdown.

Several businesses will be affected, but the agriculture and food supply sector is one of essential systems for livelihood and therefore will remain operational. Our food supply system will remain functional during this period. Agricultural production in all its forms will remain uncompromised. This includes all services including provision of veterinary and advisory services. Live auctions of livestock and sale of other agricultural commodities will continue but under the strict conditions a prescribed by the President. Exports and imports of critical agriculture commodities and the logistical measures will continue during this lock down period to ensure global and national food security.

This is not only limited to retailers but the entire food value chain, from farm-related operations, agro-processing and food manufacturing, logistics and related services, wholesale and retail services, and all support functions that ensure efficient delivery of the agro-food system.

As a nation, we boast for being self-sufficient in food production, and a part of this year’s supply is yet to be harvested – which promises to be a bumper field crop and citrus harvest – and these processes will continue as normal as a foundation of South Africa’s food system. I will be making regular updates on crop estimates to inform the country of our critical commodity supply. To ensure that we do not have inflated prices in the sector. Food price monitoring will be conducted on critical food basket commodities and reports will be given to the nation on regular bases.

The Department has set aside a package of R1.2 billion to address effects of the corona virus and ensure sustainable food production post the pandemic. The Department soon will make the details of this package together with the application channels available. The Department has also availed R100 million to the Land Bank to assist farmers under distress.

Together with the industry we are working on a sector operational procedures that would ensure adherence to the measures announced by the President this includes the provision of sanitation to employees within the sector especially farm workers.

We urge the food value chain role players to strictly comply and adhere to strict health regulations to contain and arrest COVID-19 as we strive to supply food to the nation.

I appeal to the public not to embark on panic buying, as the President has indicated. The country has sufficient food supplies. Panic buying will only cause disruptions and inconvenience in the food system. I urge you, fellow-citizens, to also be considerate and purchase that which is sufficient for your needs.

To wholesalers and retailers, we urge you not to engage in price gouging, at such a crucial time for the country. You have an important role to play in the supply of food, and the fight against COVID-19. We ask that you continue to serve the nation and help ensure food security at this critical juncture.

Ends

Word só ’n voorkeurverskaffer

Landbouweekliks kuier by Johan van der Schyff, ’n eier-en-skaapboer van Plettenbergbaai. Johan is in 2019 as Agri SA en Toyota SA se Jongboer van die Jaar aangewys. Dagbreek Eiers verpak gemiddeld 660 000 eiers per dag. Hulle hou meer as 700 000 hoenders op drie verskillende plase in die Oos- en Wes-Kaap aan. Die eiers word na uiteenlopende markte in die Oos- en Wes-Kaap versprei. Die maatskappy het ook sy eie vragmotors. Johan sê ’n goeie produk, voortreflike diens, eerlikheid en pligsgetrouheid sal tot sukses lei.