Agriculture in South Africa

In the African continent, South Africa has the largest agricultural land. Since 2020, the total agricultural land of the country has amounted to 96 million hectares, which is almost 80 percent of the total land area. A big sum of the South African economy comes from agriculture. Let’s have a look at the agriculture in South Africa:

Grains and Cereals

When it comes to agriculture in South Africa more than 60 percent of its farming area is occupied by grains and cereals. Some of the most popular grains and cereals include:

  • Maize:

Not only maize is a dietary staple and a source of livestock feed it is also one of the most popular crops in South Africa. Besides, it is also a country’s exporting crop. It is grown in the regions of Free State, KwaZulu-Natal, North-West and Mpumalanga. Solely to the production of maize, there are also 150,000 jobs created in the country with good rainfall. Each year tons of maize are produced in the country.

  • Wheat:

Another high-producing grain in the country is wheat as its demand has increased considerably after World War II. It is cultivated in areas with considerable stable rainfall like the Western Cape Orange Free State and eastern Transvaal.

  • Soybeans:

In the past few years, South Africa has been focusing on the increase in the cultivation of Soybeans to reduce reliance on its import. Being rich in nitrogen, soybean helps to increase soil fertility. With the increase in demand for organic soybeans, it is expected for farmers to diversify their crops to include organic crops.

Vegetables and Crops

South Africa’s variety of climates from temperate to tropical makes it a great place to grow crops and vegetables. The most profitable vegetables grown in South Africa are spinach, tomatoes, onion, carrots, and pepper. Other vegetables include potatoes and cabbage. You will find all types of vegetables from root vegetables to green leafy vegetables grown in the country. Some of the most profitable crops and vegetables to grow are:

  • Sorghum:

Sorghum is a popular crop with a yield of more than two million tons each year. It is harvested in the parts of the Free State in the Northern Provinces and the North-West region. It has been a popular crop since prehistoric times and is used for food and brewing purposes.

  • Cotton:

Cotton is another versatile fiber crop grown in the region. Being a summer crop it is harvested from late winter to early summer. 


Next on the list is the cultivation of fruits. The temperate climate and vast soil diversity play a critical role in the cultivation of a variety of fruits in South Africa. Some of the most profitable fruits to grow include:

  • Apples and Pears:

Some of the most profitable fruits to grow are apples, peaches, and pears. They are primarily grown in the areas of the Western Cape and Eastern Cape with cold winters and dry summers that are ideal for their cultivation. Moreover, they are a reliable source of income for farmers.

  • Oranges and Lemons:

Another profitable option for farmers in the cultivation of fruits is arranged and lemons. Because of their long shelf life, these fruits can be grown in abundance, therefore, making them highly sought after in the market. Their harvesting period is from late winter to early spring.

  • Pineapples and Grapes:

When it comes to Pineapples they can be harvested all around the year whereas the farming season for grapes starts from late summer to early summer. Moreover, both of these fruits are high in demand and are profitable to grow.

Besides, other tropical fruits that are grown in South Africa include avocados, bananas, and mangoes, and are usually grown in the northeast and some coastal areas.

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