Potatoes SA Media Statement (2/2): 1 July 2021. Dr Ben Pieterse new Chairperson of PIDT pays tribute to Ernst Yzel

Since its inception in 2004, Ernst Yzel has been part and parcel of the Potato Industry Development Trust (PIDT). One of Potatoes South Africa’s (PSA) objectives as a non-profit company under the Companies Act, 2008 (Act 71 of 2008), is to institute and endorse the maintenance of a national Potato Industry Development Trust which shall […]

Since its inception in 2004, Ernst Yzel has been part and parcel of the Potato Industry Development Trust (PIDT). One of Potatoes South Africa’s (PSA) objectives as a non-profit company under the Companies Act, 2008 (Act 71 of 2008), is to institute and endorse the maintenance of a national Potato Industry Development Trust which shall collect, distribute and govern industry levies in accordance with statutory strategies as set out in the government notices. Statutory measures constitute a powerful mechanism for each agricultural sector and are applied to organize and grow the industry, to have funds to pay for important functions and to increase the competitiveness of the industry.

In order to assist the PIDT the following committees have been established by the Trustees to assist them in their duties: Risk and Audit Committee; Research Technical Advisory Committee; Bursary Committee and the PIDT Transformation Advisory Committee.

As Chairperson of the PIDT for almost two decades, Ernst diligently ensured that the purpose of the Trust is realised through each statutory period and the projects approved by the PIDT benefitted the entire potato industry.

As a potato farmer who farmed on dry land in the Eastern Free State for more than 24 years, Ernst has a deep respect for his land. Where producers often plant potatoes every 3 years, Yzel Boerdery maintains a rotation period of 5 – 6 years. Ernst is a man who treated the PIDT and PSA with as much respect as he treats his land.

Ernst shaped his dream and passion around PSA to become a world class producer organisation where strict financial discipline is maintained, continuous communication with potato producers and other role players is enhanced and where good service delivery and transparency are non-negotiable. Being Chairperson of the PIDT, Ernst was provided with the opportunity to optimise this dream.

He laid a solid foundation with a scope to see it through – be it times of prosperity or challenging times for the potato industry. It is an honour to take over the reins from Ernst to Chair the PIDT as from 1 July 2021.

I had the privilege to work with Ernst and I attended several meetings with him with local and foreign producers and scientists. I was always impressed with the way Ernst could discuss any aspect of potato production or broader agriculture in a local or foreign audience. His knowledge and insights made him a valuable and respected chairperson of the board of PSA as well as of the PIDT. We are grateful to Ernst for his monumental contribution to the potato industry through his leadership of the PIDT over these many years. Ernst will still play an important role as Trustee and I look forward to work with him in the PIDT.

Dr Ben Pieterse
Chairperson PIDT

Issued by: Potatoes South Africa on behalf of the PIDT
Contact: Hanrie Greebe, hanrie@potatoes.co.za, +27 (0)12 349-1906

1st Jul 2021

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