The National Wool Growers’ Association of South Africa, one of the oldest commodity organisations in the country, is privileged to announce the appointment of Dan Kriek as the new General Manager, effective from 1 May 2024.

Dan is the former president of Agri SA, was previously a member of the Land Reform Advisory Panel to President Ramaphosa and is also a member of Council of the University of Free State.

The NWGA represents wool sheep producers in South Africa. Sustainable production practices are one of the main objectives of the organisation, with a strong focus on animal welfare, the environment and social responsibilities in support of improved market access for producers based on international requirements.

The current General Manager of the NWGA, Leon de Beer, will retire at the end of April 2024, after twenty years of service since joining the organisation in September 2003.

Leon said that he is proud to see an experienced and knowledgeable person like Mr Kriek take over his role and responsibilities in the NWGA.

During his tenure, Leon has been invaluable to the NWGA.  The management team sincerely thanks him for sharing his knowledge of agriculture, for his loyal commitment and service to the NWGA and wishes him well on his retirement.

Dan’s reaction to his appointment is one of a profound sense of fulfilment, particularly because Small Stock Science was his primary focus as postgraduate agricultural student many years ago.  “This appointment affords me the privilege to come full circle with my career in agriculture by returning to my roots,” says Dan. “The opportunity to work with South African wool producers is a notable privilege.  I look forward to collaborating with all stakeholders, including Government, to fortify unity and actualise the aspirations for greater prosperity for wool producers.”

Dan says wool producers have an indispensable role in the narrative of increased export earnings within the South African economy, and the distinctive sustainability status of the South African wool industry distinguishes it from its counterparts.

“Globally, South African wool producers stand as foremost suppliers of sustainably certified wool,” says Dan. “In a world where consumers increasingly emphasise social responsibility and environmental awareness, it is imperative that we fortify this competitive advantage in the wool industry. Unity prevails within the industry, where commercial and communal wool producers coalesce into a formidable team. Although the communal areas of the Eastern Cape are widely acknowledged as the new economic growth frontier for South Africa, realising this potential necessitates a collaborative effort from all stakeholders involved.  Infrastructure development and the introduction and integration of technology can profoundly enhance the socio-economic status of communal wool producers and their communities.”

The NWGA is confident that Dan brings a wealth of experience to the table and will lead the NWGA and the South African wool producer into a new era.