Agri Kultuur September / September 2016 - Page 29

tural input from both commercial and emerging farmers. Better Barley Better Beer was introduced by SA in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund South Africa (WWF-SA) as a holistic framework that focusses on environmental and social awareness by encouraging sustainable farming practises that improve the socioeconomic value of a farm while protecting the environmental integrity of the land (and monitor the economic performance of producers). The project supports both commercial and emerging barley farmers in the dryland Southern Cape and the irrigated barley fields in the Northern Cape in gaining a deeper understanding of sustainable farming practises that ultimately deliver a superior grain to SAB’s Malting Houses, and consequently deliver a great tasting beer. The noble barley grain may grow less than a centimetre high, but it really is the foundation on which many of SAB’s great beers are made. For this reason, SAB works closely with the South African Barley Breeding Institute (SABBI) in Caledon who are responsible for developing new barley cultivars with superior yield potential, stability, and disease resistance while providing improved malting and brewing quality. It’s a laborious and delicate process Eagle eye view of South African Barley Breeding Institute’s multitude of different barley varieties where thousands of potential cultivars are put though a rigorous testing process that last up to 17 years for promising cultivars. A successful new malting barley variety will deliver incremental improvements in yield and extract potential, which translates into significant gains for both the farmer and the brewer. Go Farming is another of SAB’s agricultural projects that focuses on the complete barley supply chain. This projects caters specifically for emerging farmers and supports the development of a sustainable, reliable and competitive barley supply chain for the breweries. Emerging farmers are assisted from the point of inception with a detailed soil analysis and any upgrades if necessary, fertilizer recommendations, and water requirement monitoring. Optimal planting times specific to the land are calculated and SAB assists with a comprehensive assessment of crop performance throughout the growth cycle. SAB’s intention is to ensure that there is a meaningful increase in profitability for the farmer and an improvement in the community’s social development. As a part of its Vision 2030, government’ National Development Plan sees agriculture as the vehicle to create nearly one million jobs by 2030. In order to achieve this goal, governHealthy fields of barley of the Overberg Boerdery Trust’s emerging farmers, mentored by SABBF