The Southern African Agri Initiative (Saai) is an agricultural interest network for farmers by farmers, which is committed to the protection and promotion of the rights, values, ideals and needs of family farmers in the primary produce sector.
Saai supports the broad concept of family farming which includes, but is not limited to, a land based enterprise managed by a member or members of the family (including persons employed by the family) that varies depending on the agricultural ecosystem and production systems. This definition includes commercial, subsistence, communal and backyard farmers, irrespective of age, race, gender or ethnicity.
Saai was established in the spirit of the United Nations Decade of Family Farming (2018-2029) (UNDFF) that was launched in Rome, Italy on 28 May 2019. The aim of the UNDFF is to build a framework to mobilise the international community to implement pro-family-farming policies and to protect, expand and promote the rights and opportunities of family farmers across the world. The reason for this initiative is that the United Nations (UN) and it’s agencies- the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) realised that family farmers are in the best position achieve the 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s). These goals include: No Poverty (SDG 1), Zero Hunger (SDG 2), Gender Equality (SDG 5), Clean water... (SDG 6), Affordable and clean energy (SDG 7), Decent work and economic growth (SDG 8), Reduced inequalities (SDG 10), Responsible consumption and Production (SDG 12), Climate Action (SDG 13), Peace, justice and strong institutions (SDG 16) and Partnerships for the Goals (SDG 17).
It is family farmers that anchor rural communities, drives the economy of small towns and curbs migration to the big city. That is why Saai is a voice for the family farmer in a ever corporatizing environment. Saai also only allows family farmers to become members of the organisation and not banks, corporations or any other commercial entities. This ensures that our focus is clear and our actions are always in the interest of family farmers.
Some of the other unique elements of Saai is that we are digitally driven. We communicate directly to our members via electronic and social media.
We also strive to be on the cutting edge of digital innovation and ensure that our members are informed of the latest developments;
We do not only influence policy but we also assist family farming communities with the issues that threaten their livelihoods;
We work with other organisations that specialize in certain issues. As a "network" we are then able to, when the occasion arises and the issue affects family farmers, to join forces with these pther organisations and tackle the issue.
Non Profit company
The companies act 71 of 2008
Individual farmer membership
Governance and structure
Saai does not have a federal structure but functions as a unitary structure. This means that all members communicate directly with the organisation. Saai has no sub-national or provincial structures but we are involved directly with members across the country. Saai is governed by a board of 8 directors, with the majority of the board who must always be family farmers.
Board of directors that consists of 8 directors each with a renewable 4 year term. The board must always be comprised of a majority of family farmers. The board decides on the policy of the organisation and the CEO is in charge of implementing policy.
Sectors of intervention and activities
1. Capacity-building and institutional support to members
2. Policy engagement, lobbying and advocacy
4. Communication and knowledge management
Projects, campaigns and activities undertaken by Saai is directed by our goal to strengthen the position of family farmers.
- Preventing illegal mining operations in the highly productive agricultural area of Malelane next to the Kruger National Park. This not only contributed to wildlife and water conservation but saved thousands of jobs in agriculture and tourism;
- Assisting family farmers to correct unfair property tax charges that was levied against them by local municipalities;
- The gathering of South African family farmers that previously farmed in Zimbabwe in order to claim compensation for illegal expropriation of properties;
- Contributing to international policy issues like anti-microbial resistance, access to international markets and climate change at the World Farmers Organisation on behalf of South African family farmers;
- Visiting family farmers across South Africa to gauge them on the issues that are facing farming communities in those areas;
- Delivering commentary and, where necessary, challenging new legislation or regulations that negatively impacts the productivity and profitibality of farming activities in South Africa;
- Assisting farming communities with advice on issues of concern;
- Working together with network partners to assist drought stricken farmers;
- Negotiating with financial institutions on behalf of farmers in financial distress;
- Hosting and faciliatating farmers days for developing farmers in rural areas;
- Assisting with access to financing and extension service solutions for developing farmers;
- Promoting the image of the farming community and agricultural products to the general public;
- Lobbying on behalf of family farmers with the international community, government and industry.
3. Property tax - Due to a high amount of irregular tax charges on family farms, Saai decided to launch a campaign to bring attention to the problem and correct these charges - https://www.saai.org/en/465/
4. Trophy Hunting - Saai has family farmers in the wildlife ranching sector. As a country South Africa has one of the best biodiversity in the world because of the private game industry. This is largely due to hunting activity that directly contributes to wildlife conservation - https://www.saai.org/en/hunting-trophy-ban/
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The World Rural Forum is a plural network that works to promote family farming and sustainable rural development. It is composed of farmers’ federations, family farming organisations, rural development organisations, cooperatives and agricultural research centres.
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The WORLD RURAL FORUM - DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION with Tax ID Number G01292515, hereafter referred to as the RURAL FORUM, guarantees to protect the personal data voluntarily communicated by users by email, through filling in a data collection form, through entering into a contract or when using any other service involving the communication of data or access to data.
The RURAL FORUM shall process personal data in compliance with Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of 27 April 2016 on the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data (GDPR) and with Law 3/2018 of 5 December 2018 on Protecting Data and Guaranteeing Digital Rights (LOPDGDD) and the implementing rules in force.
The RURAL FORUM is making this policy public in order to comply with the principle of proactive responsibility and transparency of information and to demonstrate that it obtains the express consent of the data subject.
Purpose of processing
The personal data collected and processed by the RURAL FORUM through this website, fairs, contracts, study days, newsletters and other routes shall be adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which they are processed, purposes which include but are not limited to the following:
In the case of data collection forms, whether on the website or on paper, and other unspecified methods of voluntary provision of data, the purpose shall be to meet a specific request, such as a response to a query, a newsletter subscription or referral, registration for a study day, the dispatch of documentation and information relating to services and in all cases advertising communications.
For service procurement: The purpose shall be to establish and maintain the contractual relationship established, in compliance with the nature and characteristics of the service procured, and to maintain records.
Recruitment of employees and collaborators.
In all cases, personal data shall be retained in a form in which the data subjects can be identified only for as long as is necessary for the purposes of the processing. Such retention periods may be extended only for scientific or historical research purposes or for statistical purposes.
The legal basis or legal ground for data processing by the RURAL FORUMdepends on the individual processing activities, the type of data subject and the purposes of the data processing; we therefore regard the following as legal grounds:
- Acceptance or consent: Data subjects who contact the RURAL FORUM to request information, to make a query or to subscribe to information notes and newsletters, etc. and who voluntarily provide the personal data requested;
- Contract: For employees. Clients or suppliers who are receiving services from or providing services to the RURAL FORUM give consent through entering into a contract.
- Overriding legitimate grounds of the controller or of third parties to whom it communicates data: Such legitimate grounds arise when contact data are collected which extend beyond the forms described in the section on the purpose of processing (for example, receipt of business cards, consultation by electronic mail).
In all instances, the data subject shall be responsible for the veracity of the data provided and the RURAL FORUM shall retain the right to exclude all false or illegal data, without prejudice to any other actions that may arise in law.
The RURAL FORUM would point out that, unless there is legally constituted representation, data subjects may not use the identity of another person or communicate that person’s personal data but must bear in mind at all times that the personal data they provide to the RURAL FORUM must be their own data and must be adequate, relevant, up to date, accurate and true.
In this connection, data subjects shall be solely liable for the damage, direct and/or indirect, that they cause to third parties or to the RURAL FORUM through the use of another person’s personal data or of their own personal data when they are false, erroneous, out of date, inadequate or irrelevant. Likewise, those who communicate the personal data of a third party shall be subject to the obligation to inform laid down in the GDPR for cases in which the personal data have not been obtained from the data subject and/or shall be liable for the consequences of not having provided the information.
The services provided by the RURAL FORUM are intended for adults. The use of those services by minors must have been authorised beforehand by the child’s parents, guardians or legal representatives who are responsible for the actions of the minors in their charge.
Release or transfer
Release: The RURAL FORUM shall release personal data to third parties solely to meet its contractual or legal obligations to service providers or public or private bodies. In such cases, the data subject consents to such release and may exercise the right to be informed of it.
International transfer: The RURAL FORUM states that in the conduct of its activities it uses the services of providers to whom it communicates data (in their capacity as processors) who are domiciled outside the European Economic Area; it thus engages in international transfers of data.
Users may at all times exercise their recognised rights over their personal data and may revoke their consent to the uses described above; they shall do so by making a request in writing either to the RURAL FORUM’s postal address or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org; in either case they must include a photocopy of their national identity card or similar identity document in order to exercise their recognised rights which are as follows:
Right of access: the right to know whether this organisation is processing their data
Right to rectification: the right to have inaccurate personal data corrected
Right to erasure: the right to have data erased in legally recognised cases
Right to object: the right to have their personal data no longer processed other than on compelling legitimate grounds
Right to restriction of processing: the RURAL FORUM will retain data only for the exercise or defence of legal claims
Right to data portability: If the data subjects wish to transmit their data to another controller, the RURAL FORUM will facilitate the portability of those data to the new controller.
For further information on the exercise of these rights, you may consult the Spanish Data Protection Agency at www.aepd.es.
If you consider that the processing of your personal data is in violation of the rules, you may lodge a complaint:
The data to be processed by the RURAL FORUM are those obtained in every case via the relevant questionnaire from the data subjects themselves.
The personal data which have been supplied by or obtained from users and which are under the control of the RURAL FORUM are organised in files which may or may not be automated and the RURAL FORUM keeps a register of processing activities in accordance with the legislation in force.
In all of its data processing activities, the RURAL FORUM implements the appropriate technical and organisational measures to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, availability, and resilience of the data processed and to ensure their security, including protection against unauthorised or unlawful processing and against loss, destruction or accidental damage.
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