The CoP DPRU and MLiA teams hosted a workshop on 30th July in Cape Town, to discuss "Fibrous Futures: Resilience & Realism: Analysing the legal and economic complexities of the South African fibrous plant micro-industry". 

Workshop Objectives (full programme):

To determine the economic and legal opportunities and constraints for developing and sustaining a fibrous plant-based industry in South Africa, by discussing:

  • If and how fibre-rich biomass can be used to remediate degraded mine land to build economic complexity, generate high value-add products, build a competitive fibrous plant micro-industry based, and create employment.
  • How best to develop this industry within the bounds of South Africa’s current legal framework and economic climate.
  • How businesspeople have innovated within the constraints they have faced – this could unlock opportunities for business development in the future.


  1. Haroon Bhorat: Introduction: Developing a Fibre Micro-industry to Generate Economic Growth from Degraded Land
  2. Tapiwa Chimbganda & Xihluke Mabasa: An overview of fibre crop cultivation and multi-product value chains for post-mining industrial development 
  3. François Steenkamp: The Fibrous Plant Industry in South Africa: A Sectoral Profile
  4. Robert Hill: The Fibrous Plant Industry in South Africa: A Product Space Mapping
  5. Panel: Sandy Paterson - Amanda Mkhonza; Olivia Rumble; Louie Van Schalkwyk: Environmental Regulation: Relevant Legal Processes, Permitting and Obligations
  6. John Hutchinson: A feasibility study to assess the viability of bamboo processing and product manufacture in South Africa
  7. Tony Budden: Cannabis can… Hemp opportunities in South Africa
  8. Panel: Hanri Mostert - Louie Van Schalkwyk; Shane Godfrey; Mpho Tlale; Jacqueline Yeats; Jenny Broadhurst; François Steenkamp: Panel On Stakeholder Interests

Photo Gallery:

Photo gallery Workshop 3 pg 1
Photo gallery Workshop 3 pg 2