MPO Milk Bulletin 1 December 2017


Agricultural Writers award outstanding achievements

The Agricultural Writers SA recently acknowledged outstanding achievements of commercial farmers, new entrants into commercial agriculture, and agriculturists. These awards were recently handed over in Bloemfontein at a function sponsored by Monsanto SA, Sanlam, Santam Agriculture and Rovic Leers.
One of the aims of these awards is to give prominence to the role that farmers and agriculturists play in the agricultural sector in South Africa. The national Farmer of the Year is Charles Back of the Western Cape, the national Agriculturist of the Year is Dr Annemie Erasmus of North West and the national New Entrant into Commercial Agriculture is Warren Bam of the Western Cape.
“Every day we are met with the challenge of feeding a growing world population. With these awards, Agricultural Writers SA recognises the role that farmers and agriculturists play in addressing food security,” said Magda du Toit, chairperson of Agricultural Writers SA. To read more, click HERE.

 Enter the SA Dairy Championships 2018

Dairy producers are invited to enter the 2018 South African Dairy Championships which  has been hosted since 1834 by Cape of Good Hope Agricultural Society, which is known today as Agri-Expo. According to Johan Ehlers, CEO of Agri-Expo, the ultimate aim of the championships, celebrating its 185th year of existence this year, is to promote excellence in the dairy industry.
The championships consist of nine categories and 102 classes for end products in the dairy industry. Any dairy producer with products available in the trade may enter. The winners in each of the classes are crowned as SA Champions at the Qualité Awards Dinner, while products of exceptional quality receive the the Qualité mark. After the first round of judging by more than 70 judges, a panel of five specialists allocate the Product of the Year. Parmalat’s 10 months Matured Gouda won the 2017 title. Kobus Mulder, chief judge, says: “The championships is unique, as the judges participate individually in a blind evaluation of products in order to ensure the process is truly independent.”
Entries for the 2018 championships opens on 4 January 2018 on the website The closing date for entries is 1 February 2018.  Judging takes place on 22 February 2018 and the Qualité Awards Dinner will be held at Grand West in Cape Town on 23 March 2018. To read more, click HERE.

Enter the 2018 TDM Innovation Awards!

If your company has launched or will launch an innovative, cutting-edge product in the South African dairy market between 1 July 2017 and 30 June 2018, then you should enter the 2018 TDM innovation awards.
By entering you:

  • raise your personal or company profile – shortlisted and winning entries are promoted to our readers all over the country, offering fantastic coverage;
  • prove your knowledge – increasing your reputation within the industry; and
  • align yourself with excellence – the TDM Innovation Awards are all about celebrating excellence.

The winner will be announced at the annual MPO gala dinner and receive a 5-page spread in the December issue of The Dairy Mail (valued at over R60 000). To read more, click HERE.

Celebrating Stewardship 

After the successful launch of the TDM Stewardship Awards in 2017, The Dairy Mail is again inviting nominations for 2018. In keeping with the strategic goal of the MPO, sustainable dairy farming for all, we believe that good stewardship should be recognised and rewarded. If you know a dairy farmer who is the epitome of a good dairy steward, nominate him or her in the second annual TDM Stewardship Awards competition.
Nominated farmers should excel in at least one of these areas:

  • Is they good stewards of the land?
  • Do they produce milk that is healthy, wholesome and safe to drink?
  • Are animals and humans on the farm treated with care and consideration?
  • Are they running a profitable dairy business?

To enter, complete the entry form and submit your nomination to the editor at by 31 May 2018. There will be a judging process, including a farm visit, and farms will all be judged on the same vital capital index. Nominated farmers will also receive feedback based on this report in order to further improve their sustainability efforts. The winner will be announced at the annual MPO gala dinner and receive a 5-page spread in the December issue of The Dairy Mail (valued at over R60 000). To read more, click HERE.


Global dairy product prices slightly lower 

Prices at the latest Global Dairy Trade auction held on 21 November were 3,4% lower than at the previous auction held at the beginning of November.  This is the fourth decrease since September 2017. The Gdt trade-weighted index currently stands at 969, 10,8% down on the September 2017  peak. Prices are still 77,8% up on the low reached in August 2015.

The role of dairy in sustainable diets: creating new approaches

The International Dairy Federation will gather leading nutrition and environmental experts from around the world in Seville, Spain to discuss the role of dairy in sustainable diets on 1 and 2 February 2018. This event will bring a new perspective to the table, in looking at both the environmental and nutritional aspects of dairy simultaneously.
The event will offer delegates a mix of presentations and content, covering both the nutritional and environmental facets of both topics, throughout the two days. The first day of the programme will cover three sessions, focusing on sustainable diets, public perceptions of dairy and dairy as part of a nutritious diet. The second day of the programme will focus on the environmental and socioeconomic impact of dairy and mitigating the environmental impact of and adaptating to climate change. The full programme is available at To read more, click HERE.


Schedule your dairy farm training now
Helene Pheiffer, training manager at the MPO, urges milk producers to schedule their dairy farm training as soon as possible. The Institute for Dairy Technology is continuously updating its schedule of training programmes for 2017. Their courses, some of which form part of Milk SA projects, are aimed at dairy farm workers and supervisors. Click HERE for details of the training programmes offered. Please contact Chantel Joubert at 012 843 5747 or send an e-mail to  or Jas Wasserman at 082 490 2465 or send an e-mail to for assistance and/or to book a five-day course.


Congratulations to the winner of our competition!
Kobus Marais of Leeudoringstad is the winner of our September competition. Kobus estimated the production of raw milk in September at 302 million litres. Kobus won Sunskin products to the value of R1 000.
Do you know how much milk was supplied in South Africa in October 2017? Put your knowledge to the test and stand a chance to win. A winner will be announced every month and there are several prizes to be won. After 12 draws, a national winner will be announced at the MPO’s 2018 gala dinner. Click HERE for more information and instructions on how to enter.
Keeping the cow that lays the golden eggs

Dairy farming generally shows small profit margins. A large capital outlay is required at start-up. Operating a dairy farm also requires a daily cost input, mostly for feed. A number of factors affect the economic success of dairy farming. To read more, turn to page 54 of the December issue of The Dairy Mail. To read the digital copy of TDM, go to

Disclaimer: The MPO Milk Bulletin is compiled from sources deemed reliable. However, the publisher accepts no responsibility for any errors or the effect of any decisions based on this publication.
Contact us


Barbara Bieldt
Manager: Market protection and development

Dr. Koos Coetzee

Philip Swart
MPO manager of member services

Published on Fri, 1st Dec 2017 - 13:10

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