“As we work to grow the economy and create jobs, we will expand support to poor families to ensure that no person in this country has to endure the pain and indignity of hunger.” – President Cyril Ramaphosa, State of the Nation Address 2022. Currently more than 40% of South Africans are affected by hunger, while approximately 2.3-million households reported child hunger in 2021.
SA’s natural resources are under threat as a result of climate change. Unpredictable and extreme weather patterns – floods, droughts and wildfires – are playing havoc with agricultural supply chains and are having an impact on food security in the country. The international Ukraine/Russia crisis has seen fuel prices in SA skyrocket, and the knock-on effect is hitting consumers hard. Simply getting a basic, staple meal on the table is less predictable for millions in our country.
In February, the president promised to finalise a comprehensive social compact to grow the economy, create jobs and combat hunger within 100 days. How do we mitigate climate change, manage water resources, execute a just energy transition and support agriculture to ensure food security so that no person goes to bed hungry, as per Ramaphosa’s commitment to SA?
Andy Du Plessis
Managing Director, FoodForward SA
Prof Imraan Valodia
Professor of Economics, Pro Vice-Chancellor: Climate, Sustainability and Inequality, and Director of the Southern Centre for Inequality Studies, WITS
Prof Mark Swilling
Co-Director, Centre for Sustainability Transitions, University of Stellenbosch
Prof Francois Engelbrecht
Director and Professor of Climatology, Global Change Institute, University of the Witwatersrand
Dr Jaisheila Rajput
Founder and CEO, Tomorrow Matters Now (TOMA-Now)