The Three Faces of Packaging Materials

The term ‘packaging’ encompasses many disciplines and functions that are used to enclose and protect products (food, clothing, consumer products etc.) for distribution, storage, sale, and use. However, the term also refers to the processes involved in the designing, evaluating and production of various types of packaging. Faced with the good – the positive influence…

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Indigenous vegetables

Several reasons are advanced for the neglect of these commodities despite their higher nutrients content compared to the conventional. They are also known to be well adapted to the climatic and natural resource condition of the native environment. They play a leading role in the socio-cultural life of the people. Bringing these commodities to the…

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Integrated Pest Management

Since the dawn of agriculture, farmers have been dealing with the challenges of managing pests, weeds and diseases that threaten our ability to produce enough safe and healthy food for the population. Thankfully the strategies to control pests have evolved over the years and continue to do so. New technologies and innovations have enabled, for…

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Society is constantly looking for ways to improve. This is also true in the agricultural sector. Contrary to widespread belief created by suspense movie dramas, industry, science, and farmers are constantly taking hands in the quest to improve agricultural practises and in finding reduced, better and safer use of available methods designed to control insects,…

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Saving fuel with correct mechanisation practices

Mechanisation is necessary when doing crop production but can be very costly due to improper practices because of expensive farm machinery costs and increasing fuel prices. It is therefore important to plan and utilize farm mechanisation systems efficiently and thus to save costs when doing farming operations. Ultimately farming business is only sustainable when it…

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The importance of crop health to sustainable crop production

The productivity of crops relates directly to their health. But what is a healthy crop? A healthy crop is a crop that receives sufficient water, nutrients, and light for photosynthesis. Healthy crops are also void of injuries from biotic or abiotic factors. Such crops, growing under optimal conditions, are less susceptible to pests and diseases…

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Biotech Crops

Many years of human intervention, either through domestication of wild species or selective breeding, has given us the food crops that we eat today. However, advances in plant science based on our improved understanding of genetics, has accelerated crop improvement to become a more exact science with the deployment of plant biotechnology tools, such as…

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A quick look at crown rust of oats

Crown rust of oats is the most common leaf disease of oats in the Western Cape, South Africa. It is caused by a fungus named Puccinia coronata f. sp. avenae and can cause major damage in susceptible cultivars. Although the word “crown” is referred to in the name, which may be confusing, it is basically…

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Is Climate Change a Reality?

The Mangaung Metro Municipality experience Whether or not climate change is a reality is a dilemma faced by many within the farming community and poses different questions. For example, why have the onset date and duration of seasonal rainfall changed? Why are we noticing the intensification of prolonged dry spells that can last up to…

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Solar Steam Distillation Technology in SA’s Indigenous Oils Extraction

Wild exotic oils play an important role in the societies in Africa and globally, from a flavour, fragrance, and aromatherapy perspective. South Africa, a country with a strong history of traditional healing, hosts a variety of more than 30,000 plant species which account for almost 10% of the world’s higher plants habitant in the country.…

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