Agriculture plays an important role for South African economy.
Cereals and grains are South African's most important crops, occupying more than 60 percent of hectare under cultivation in the 1990's. Maize, the country's most important crop, is a dietary staple, a source of livestock feed, and an export crop.
The largest export groups are wine, citrus, maize, grapes, sugar, apples, pears and quinces. Other important export products are undermatured ethyl alcohol, avocados, pineapples date preserved fruit and nuts, as well as hides and skins.
Primary agriculture contributes about 3% to South African's gross domestic product (GDP) and about 7% to formal employment.
However, there are strong linkages into the economy, so that the agro-industrial sector comprises about 12% of GDP.
For the past five years, agricultural exports have contributed on average about 6,5 % of total South African exports increased from 5 % (1988) to 46% (2009) of agricultural