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Business: Oilseed Prices in SA Collapse By 20%


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Oilseed prices in SA collapse by 20%

Oilseed prices in SA have collapsed by 20% since the local industry got wind of 70 000 tons of sunflower seeds being imported from Russia by family owned business, Willowton Oil.

This is according to Shoaib Moosa of Willowton Oil, who further stated that the second shipment, a total of 20 000 tons of oilseed, is scheduled to arrive on the 20th of March 2009 on board the Delta Ranger.

The first shipment, an initial 23 000 tons, arrived aboard the IMME Oldendorff on Wednesday 28 January 2009 and represented the first of three separate shipments scheduled to arrive in SA from Russia.

“Willowton Oil decided to import oilseed from Russia in a bid to maintain lower prices for local cash-strapped consumers,” says Moosa. “2008 saw a significant increase in sunflower oil prices which had a major impact on manufacturers and consumers alike.”

Currently there is between 150 000 and 200 000 tons of surplus oilseed in SA and 2009 production is estimated at 850 000 tons, meaning the price will be coming down further.

“In a bid to be as affordable as possible and pass on savings to the end customer, Willowton, one of South Africa’s major sunflower seed crushers and leading manufacturer of edible oils and margarines, concluded this import deal as it was cheaper than buying locally at the time. However, with the price now dropping as it is, the price of local oilseed will be approximately R1000 cheaper per ton than imported seed,” explains Moosa.

“Willowton have not benefited directly from the Russian import deal but with the price of cooking oil having risen sharply for the man on the street during 2008 we felt it imperative to be able to offer consumers a much needed saving on the cost of the end product.”

In the meanwhile, Willowton are working on further ways to offer the man on the street additional cost savings on premium sunflower oil – watch this space,” concludes Moosa.

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