The Department functions under several legislative mandates, which include among others the following:

  • Agricultural Development Fund Act, 1993 (Act No 175 of 1993)
  • Agricultural Product Standards Act, 1990 (Act No 119 of 1990)
  • Animal Diseases Act, 1984 (Act 35 of 1984)
  • Agricultural Research Act, 1990 (Act No 86 of 1990)
  • Animal Identification Act, 2002 (Act No 6 of 2002
  • Animal Improvement Act, 1998 (Act 62 of 1998)
  • Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment Act, 2003 (Act No 53 of 2003)
  • Codex Alimentarius of the World Health Organization (WHO) and Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) (International Code on Food Safety)
  • Communal Land Rights Act, 2004
  • Conservation of Agricultural Resources Act, 1983 (Act 43 of 1983)
  • Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 (Act 108 of 1996)
  • Disaster Management Act, 2002 (Act No 57 of 2002)
  • Fencing Act, 1963 (Act No 31 of 1963)
  • Fertilizers, Farm feeds, Agricultural Remedies and Stock Remedies Act, 1947 (Act 36 of 1947)
  • Genetically Modified Organisms Act, 1997 (Act 15 of 1997)
  • Land Redistribution for Agricultural Development (LRAD)
  • Land Reform Act, 1997 (Act 3 of 1997)
  • Marketing of Agricultural Produce Act, 1996 (Act 47 of 1996)
  • Meat Safety Act, 2000 (Act 40 of 2000)
  • Northern Cape Land Administration Act, 2003
  • Perishable Product Export Control Act, 1983 (Act 9 of 1983)
  • Plant Improvement Act, 1976 (Act 53 of 1976)
  • Public Finance Management Act, 1999 (PFMA), Act 1 of 1999 as amended by Act 29 of 1999
  • Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act, 2000 (Act No 5 of 2000)
  • Preferential Procurement Regulations of August 2001
  • Provincial Supply Chain Management Policy (April 2006)
  • South African Abattoir Corporation Act, 2005 Repeal (Act no 17 of 2005)
  • Subdivision of Agricultural Land Act, 1970 (Act 70 of 1970) (pending repeal)
  • The International Animal Health Code of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE – Office International des Epizooties)
  • The international Code for Laboratory Diagnostic Procedure for Animal Diseases of the World Organization for Animal Health
  • The Sanitary and Phyto-sanitary Agreement of the World Trade Organization (WTO)
  • Treasury Regulations for Departments, constitutional institutions and public entities issued in March 2005 in terms of the PFMA
  • Veterinary and Para-Veterinary Professions Act, 1982 (Act 19 of 1982)
  • Water Act, 1998
  • National Environmental Management Act 107 of 1998 as amended (NEMA)
  • National Environmental Management: Waste Act 59 of 2008 (NEMWA)
  • National Environmental Management Biodiversity Act 10 of 2004 (NEMBA)
  • National Environmental Management Protected Areas Act 57 of 2003 (NEMPAA) as amended
  • National Environmental Management Air Quality Management Act 39 of 2004 (NEMAQA)
  • National Environmental Management: Integrated Coastal Management Act 24 of 2008. (ICM Act)
  • White Paper on National Climate Change Response, 2011.
  • National Climate Change Response Policy (NCCRP, 2011)
  • National Waste Management Strategy
  • Stock Theft Act 57 of 1959 as amended.
  • Game Theft Act 105 of 1991 (GTA) to protect wild animals against theft and poaching.
  • Protected Areas Act: Admission of Guilt Fines, 2011.
  • Noise Control Regulations in terms of section 25, 1992.
  • Regulations regarding Waste Disposal Sites, 1994.
  • Regulations under section 24(d) of the ECA – Plastic Carrier Bags and Plastic Flat Bags, 2003.
  • Regulations for the Prohibition of the Use, Manufacturing, Import and Export of Asbestos and Asbestos Regulations for Bioprospecting, Access and Benefit-sharing, 2008.
  • Regulations for the Proper Administration of Nature Reserves, 2012.
  • Northern Cape Nature Conservation Act 9 of 2009 and its associated Northern Cape Nature Species (TOPS) Regulations, 2007.
  • Hunting norms and standards (NEMBA), notice 1084 of 2010.
  • Sea Shores Act 21 of 1935

International agreements

Work of the department is further guided by international obligations that stem from around 18 international conventions, protocols, treaties and other agreements to which South Africa is a Party. These include Agenda 21, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development goals and its associated Sustainable Development Goals, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC, 1992) and the Kyoto Protocol (1997). Furthermore, South Africa is a signatory to the Paris Agreement (2016), Convention on Biological Diversity (1995) and the Nagoya protocol, Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (1991), Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (RAMSAR) (1975), Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora – CITES (1975), Lusaka Agreement on Co-operative Operations Directed at all Illegal Trade in Wild Fauna & Flora (1974, the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (2009) coordinated by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, the World Heritage Convention, and the Guidelines of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

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