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PAARL – The worldwide coronavirus pandemic has forced the South African deciduous fruit industry to present its annual awards digitally this year. “We decided to announce the winners in a press release and to hand over the awards during a virtual event that will replace the 45th gala evening,” said Jacques Jordaan, chairman of the awards committee and CEO of the Canning Fruit Producers Association.

The deciduous fruit industry includes apples, pears, apricots, peaches, nectarines, plums, prunes, cherries, table grapes and dried grapes – grown mainly in the Western, Eastern, and Northern Cape.

“Earlier this year we almost cancelled the event, but felt that despite the COVID-19 outbreak, the industry as an essential service, needs to acknowledge hard work, skills development, and community involvement that are all key to a successful season,” Jordaan said.

Three people received awards for outstanding performance working on deciduous fruit farms specifically and five for their direct and indirect contributions to the industry:


List of award winners 2020

  • Specialist Agricultural Worker: Rudowaan Rayneil Isaacs (top middle)
  • Advanced Agricultural Worker: Lance du Toit (bottom far left)
  • New Generation Award: Dirk Louw (top left)
  • Research and Technology Award: Phyllis Burger and Andries Daniels (bottom second from right)
  • OSH Reinecke Frontrunner Award: Alexander “Boetie” Kriel (bottom right)
  • Izethelo Media Award: Lizma van Zyl (bottom second from left)
  • Special Industry Award: Colleen Goosen (top right)

DOWNLOAD a pdf in English AND AFRIKAANS for full stories on all the winners here: deciduousfruit-awards2020_eng_afr_pressrelease_final

CAPTION: Boetie Kriel, winner of OSH Reinecke Frontrunner Award for 2020. Boetie, who received the award posthumously, was instrumental in the creation of FruitFly Africa. Here he is busy demonstrating sterile insect technique.

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