The Southern African Macadamia Growers’ Association has conducted a final crop forecast survey for the 2017 season. The updated forecast is 42 000 tons of nut-in shell (1.5% kernel moisture content), which is 570 tons more than the forecast that was issued in May due to higher participation from handlers in the industry. The macadamia industry is still suffering from the effects of a severe drought that lead to a crop of 38 000 tons in 2016, compared to 46 000 tons that were produced in 2015. It is evident that the Limpopo Province is under more constraint and many handlers have submitted a lower forecast for this province than previously. In contrast, Mpumalanga Province has a slightly higher forecast, which could be due to the many new plantings that has come into production for the first time, since it remains the province with the most new plantings annually and also because the Lowveld of Mpumalanga is the main producing region due to having the most hectares planted to macadamias. Fifty five percent (55%) of the 2017 crop is expected to be produced in Mpumalanga (Table 1).

Mr Walter Giuricich, chairman of SAMAC, encouraged the industry to process more macadamias to kernel in order to satisfy the high demand for kernel. “Some of the country’s highest quality macadamias is being exported as inshell, whereas lower quality nuts are often processed and sorted in order to ensure that high quality products leave South Africa’s shores”, Giuricich said. Approximately 49% of the crop is expected to be processed to kernel this year, as opposed to 64% that was processed to kernel in 2016.


Issued by the Southern African Macadamia Growers’ Association




The Southern African Macadamia Growers’ Association has conducted a round of data collection from approximately 80% of the registered handlers representing approximately 95% of the macadamia industry’s total production volume. The updated forecast is 41 430 tons of nut-in shell (1.5% kernel moisture content), which is slightly lower than the previous forecast of 42 000 tons. It is suspected that many new plantings will come into production for the first time, resulting in a slight increase in production from 2016. The macadamia industry is still suffering the effects of a severe drought that lead to a crop of 38 000 tons in 2016, compared to 46 000 tons that were produced in 2015. Mpumalanga remains the largest production region with 51% of the forecasted volumes predicted to come from this province, followed by Limpopo (26%) and KwaZulu-Natal (21%). The remaining 3% of the crop is expected to come from other regions such as the Eastern and Western Cape Provinces. An updated forecast will be done during June 2017.

New data has also been received from macadamia nurseries on their 2016 tree sales volumes. The new data, received from approximately 90% of the nurseries and representing approximately 95% of the industry, shows that 1 132 110 macadamia trees were sold in South Africa during 2016. This is the equivalent of 3 538 hectares at a planting density of 320 trees per hectare. ‘Beaumont’ remains the most-widely planted cultivar, comprising 49% of the total sales, followed by A4 (22%) and 816 (16%). Mpumalanga remains the province with the most new plantings, absorbing 49% of the total trees produced, followed by KwaZulu-Natal (33%), Limpopo Province (10%), Western Cape (3%) and other destinations (5%). In 2016 it was reported that more than 70% of trees were sold in Mpumalanga during 2015. It is evident that the growth in new plantings in KwaZulu-Natal is on the increase and it is expected that this province will become a major growing-region in the future.

Issued by the Southern African Macadamia Growers’ Association (SAMAC)
29 May 2017

Contact: Barry Christie
Tel: +27 73 084 1772


Research Symposium 2016 Presentations

Prof Bernard Slippers_FABI

Prof. Bernard Slippers – 08:40

The power of successful industry-macadamia collaborations: Critical mass, leverage and impact.

Mark Penter_Cultivars

Mark Penter – 09:15

Selection and evaluation of new cultivars for the South African macadamia industry.

Willem Steyn_EPNs

Willem Steyn – 09:35

Investigations into the use of EPN’s for the possible control of the nut borer complex and the impact of it on the thrips complex occurring on macadamias in South Africa

Maritha Schoeman_Huskrot

Maritha Schoeman – 09:55

Evaluation of fungicides for controlling husk rot in macadamias.

Alex Whyte_GFNC Sponsor

Green Farms Nut Company – 10:15

Prestige Sponsor Presentation by Alex Whyte

Dr Gerhard Verdoorn_Chemicals

Dr. Gerhard Verdoorn – 11:00

Pesticide use in macadamias: Important factors to consider.

Mark Penter_Discolouration and Rancimat

Mark Penter – 11:35

Discolouration of SA macadamias and Rancimat as a tool for kernel shelf-life predictions and determination of risk factors affecting quality and shelf-life in the harvest and storage of macadamias.

Dr Schalk Schoeman_IPM

Dr. Schalk Schoeman – 11:55

Integrated management of macadamia pests.

Prof Peter Taylor_Bat stinkbug control

Prof. Peter Taylor – 12:15

New Findings on the potential for bats to control lepidopteran pests of macadamias.

De Villiers Fourie_Resistance

De Villiers Fourie – 12:30

Investigation of possible pyrethroid resistance developing in the two-spotted stinkbug, Bathycoelia Distincta, on macadamias in South Africa.

Stephan Schoeman_Surface Crusts

Stephan Schoeman – 12:40

Breaking surface crusts in macadamia orchards.

Prof Ben Botha_Pheromones re

Prof. Ben Botha – 14:35

Development of synthetic pheromones for the control of stinkbug.

Lindi Botha_Rearing stink bugs

Lindi Botha – 14:55

Rearing of stinkbugs: some interesting and possible useful observations.

Andre Botha_Traps

Andre Botha – 15:10

Evaluating pheromone traps for stinkbugs.

Colleen Hepburn_Stored Product Pests

Colleen Hepburn – 15:20

Awareness of stored product pests.

Nontokozo Kunene_Phytophthora

Nontokozo Kunene – 15:30

Let your soil speak for you…Are you Phytophthora free?

Christiaan Saaiman_Harvest

Christiaan Saaiman –

New app development for farming data – Harvest




Overview of the South African Macadamia Industry


From fairly humble beginnings in the 1960’s when macadamias were first introduced into the country, the South African macadamia industry has grown into a major world force, competing with Australia in terms of being the largest producer. It is arguably the fastest growing tree crop industry in South Africa with production increasing more than 20-fold in the last 20 years, from 1 211 tons of nut in shell (NIS) in 1991 to an industry capable of producing 46 000 tons in 2015. The total value of annual production has increased from R32 million in 1996 to approximately R 3.2 Billion in 2015. Due to a severe drought period, production decreased with a total production of 38 000 tons NIS produced in 2016, valued at R2.714 Billion.

New macadamia tree plantings have increased the number of trees from about one million in 1996 to more than 8 million in 2016, covering a total area of approximately 28 000 hectares. New plantings ensure that the industry is growing by an estimated 3 900 ha annually.

The main growing areas are Levubu and Tzaneen in Limpopo province, Hazyview to Barberton in Mpumalanga and coastal KwaZulu-Natal. There are an estimated 700 farmers involved in growing macadamia nuts, with more than 650 that are members of SAMAC. A number of growers are GlobalGAP and SIZA accredited and most of the cracking facilities are HACCP and/or ISO 9001 accredited. Quality assurance is given priority throughout the industry, from farm level through the processor and exporter to the customer. Individual batch processing used in all the cracking facilities provides for the kind of attention to detail that not only ensures full traceability of every container of macadamias from the customer back to farm level, but also supplies farmers with fast feedback of quality attributes of each batch processed.

[Go to “SUPPLIERS” for a list of SAMAC affiliated South African macadamia marketing companies to make your purchase of fine quality macadamia nut products]

The industry is export based with more than 95% of annual production shipped to international markets. Approximately 50% of the South African crop is exported as NIS to Asia, and the remainder of the crop is processed to kernel. The USA and Canada is the largest market for kernel exports. Other markets include Europe, Japan, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Given the large number of young trees yet to come into production, the industry has tremendous growth and development potential. Although most of the workforce in the industry is employed seasonally, for the harvesting and processing from February to August, it is estimated that at least 7 150 permanent job opportunities have been created on macadamia farms and another 600 permanent jobs in cracking facilities. In peak season, the industry presently provides employment for an additional 8 150 workers. A total of 12 500 full-time equivalent workers are estimated to be employed by the macadamia industry in South Africa. Since production is expected to continue to increase due to the rate at which new plantings are being established, employment creation is expected to continue to grow at a similar pace.

The industry body SAMAC was formed in the early 1970’s by a group of growers seeking to pool their resources in order to address their common problems and issues. SAMAC opened its first permanent office in October 1997 with two staff members. Currently (2016) SAMAC has a membership of more than 500 members, which consists of growers, international members, nurseries, handlers and service providers. SAMAC is a dynamic organisation, funded by a statutory levy and voluntary membership contributions and directed by macadamia industry participants who have the orderly growth and development of the industry at heart. SAMAC initiated contact with other African macadamia producing countries, Kenya, Malawi and Zimbabwe, at an historic “indaba” held in Harare in 1998 and after more than a decade SAMAC still works closely with these industries to promote the global industry.

Global contacts and cooperation has been further developed through the participation in the seven International Macadamia Symposia that have taken place since its inception in 1999, of which three have been hosted in South Africa (1999, 2009 and 2015).

SAMAC is also a member of the INC (The International Nut and Dried Fruit Council) where the industry has the opportunity to interact not only with international macadamia role players, but with various other key role players within the international nut trade.

The South African macadamia industry is proud of its strong private enterprise base and the structures in place for its governance, created, funded and controlled by the growers, processors and marketers who are committed to its successful future.


Establishment of the ‘Macadamia Special Committee’ of the China Chamber of Commerce of Import & Export

Establishment of the ‘Macadamia Special Committee’ of the China Chamber of Commerce of Import & Export of Foodstuffs, Native Produce and Animal By-Products (CCCFNA)

The SAMAC Chairman was given the opportunity  to present on the South African Macadamia Industry in Kunming, China after receiving an invitation from the CCCFNA.  This follows the recent Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) signing ceremony with the China Roasters Association and the exchange of membership with the Yunnan Macadamia Society.  The conference was attended by approximately 150 influential Chinese roleplayers and international stakeholders during which a ‘Macadamia Special Committee’ was established and various key representatives appointed. 

The Chairman was presented with a Letter of Appointment to serve on the Committee which will permit more engagement, interaction and influence within the wider China Macadamia Industry with a key focus on tariff negotiations, which are presently under way. 

Additionally at the XXXVI INC World Nut and Dried Fruit Congress in Chennai the SAMAC Chairman signed an MOU with the CCCFNA which formalises the relationship between the two organisations.  As a result SAMAC and the CCCFNA will exchange reciprocal membership, involve each other in functions, events and initiatives organised by each Association as well as support the expansion of the macadamia industry in both countries.

The Chairman receiving his Letter of Appointment from Miss Chen Ying, Director of Cereals and Oils Department of the CCCFNA.

Mr Bian Zhenhu (President of the CCCFNA) and Walter Giuricich (SAMAC Chairman) shorlty after signing the MOU at the XXXVI INC  World Nut and Dried Fruit Congress in Chennai.


First report of Lasiodiplodia theobromae on Macadamia integrifolia in Brazil

Ivan Herman Fischer1  * 

Marcos José Perdona1 

Juliana Cristina Sodário Cruz1 

Ana Carolina Firmino2 

1Polo Regional Centro Oeste, Av. Rodrigues Alves, 40-40, CEP – 15678-000, Bauru, SP.

2UNESP/FCAT/Campus Dracena, Rod. Comandante João Ribeiro de Barros, Km 651 – Das Antas, CEP – 17900-000, Dracena, SP

Macadamia tree (Macadamia integrifolia Maiden & Betche) is a plant native to the rainforests of Australia. Its nut is rich in monounsaturated oils and is considered an excellent energy source. In August 2013, samples of branches and bark of the trunk of macadamia plants were received for laboratory analysis; they were from an eight-year-old commercial orchard located in São João da Boa Vista, São Paulo State, Brazil, and presented symptoms of sunken canker on the bark (Figure 1A), while some plants had gum exudations, which culminated in dry terminal branches. At least 10 plants of the orchard were symptomatic. Fragments of diseased bark were previously surface-sterilized by immersion in 70% ethanol for 30 s and 1% sodium hypochlorite for 30 s, and then washed in sterile distilled water. Small sections (0.5 cm long) were cut from the edge of an advancing lesion on the diseased bark and placed directly on water agar medium. The developed fungal colonies were placed on potato dextrose agar (PDA) medium and, subsequently, identified based on morphologic characters. Formed cultures were dark grey colored after seven days. Pycnidia were stromatic, globose and ostiolate. Conidia were initially hyaline, 1-celled and subovoid. When mature, conidia were 1-septate, brown and measured 26-31 x 12-16µm, typical of Lasiodiplodia theobromae (Pat.) Griff. & Maubl. Presence of Botryosphaeria rhodina (Berk. & M.A. Curtis) (teleomorph of L. theobromae) was not detected in the bark with canker or in the culture medium. ITS1 and ITS4 sequenced region of the isolate showed 98% similarity to the isolate of L. theobromae (AY585345). Pathogenicity test was performed for three isolates through attachment with adhesive tape of PDA plugs containing mycelium of the fungus on the shoot in five healthy plants of macadamia aged four months. Plants were maintained in a humid chamber for the first 24 h after inoculation and conditioned in a greenhouse. After seven days of inoculation, necrosis on the shoot was observed (Figure 1B). Pathogenicity was confirmed by recovering inoculated isolates from infected tissues. In Australia, Lasiodiplodia sp. was reported causing husk rot of macadamia (Mayers, P.E. Epidemiology and control of husk spot of macadamia. Australian Macadamia Society News Bulletin, v.25, p.59-64, 1998). This is the first record of L. theobromae causing disease to macadamia plants in Brazil.

Figure 1 A. Macadamia branch bark removed from the trunk with symptoms of canker of Lasiodiplodia theobromae; B. Necrosis on the macadamia shoot after seven days of the inoculation of L. theobromae 

Received: September 21, 2016; Accepted: February 14, 2017

Ivan Herman Fischer (

Creative Commons License This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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