Women play a vital role in Africa’s agriculture sector, growing about 70% of the continent’s food. Yet Africa’s smallholder women farmers come up against various barriers that limit their potential as growers. A climate-smart agriculture project aims to provide these farmers with the skills and resources needed to boost their businesses and succeed over the long term.
Vegetable farmer Mabel Dikobe’s story is a fine example of how equipping small businesses with the resources they require can empower them to support entire communities.
In 2020, Sergeant Thabo Moletsane won the Western Cape Stock Theft Committee’s award for Best Member of a Stock Theft Unit for the fourth year in a row. Glenneis Kriel found out more about this remarkable man.
A group of subsistence farmers in the Western Cape have put their differences aside and come together to realise their individual dreams of owning a farm. Glenneis Kriel reports on the launch of Thembelitsha Farming.
Small beginnings can lay the foundation of great success. This holds true for SA Harvest, a food rescue and distribution organisation. Ali Conn, regional manager at SA Harvest, spoke to Jeandré van der Walt about the organisation’s journey over the past year and its future plans.
The Mswati Communal Property Association (CPA) in Mpumalanga was one of the earliest beneficiaries of the new South African government’s land reform programme. More than 20 years later, the community is still struggling to get the crucial support from the state that would enable them to grow their farming businesses, says CPA committee member Maria Magagula. She and her daughter, Sanet, spoke to Siyanda Sishuba.
Lengau Mothiane has just signed on another 10 employees to handle the workload at his farmer support services business, Horizon Southern Group. Sabrina Dean spoke to him about his journey.
Qobo Qobo Essential Oils, a non-profit organisation, has teamed up with South African Breweries to establish an essential oil crop venture in the impoverished Keiskammahoek area of the Eastern Cape. The project promises to become self-sustaining within a few years, writes Mike Burgess.
Brought together through necessity by severe and ongoing drought, a group of farmers from Kuruman, Northern Cape, established an unusual stokvel in 2016 to assist each other with the sharing of resources. Thapelo Kgopodithate, the founder of the Makawana Farmers’ Stokvel initiative, spoke to Siyanda Sishuba about the group’s achievements.
As the son of a farmworker, Sewis van der Horst managed to work his way up to become a farmer in his own right and an exporter of quality fruit. Last year, he was crowned the Toyota New Harvest winner. Jeandré van der Walt visited his operation close to Villiersdorp.
Having suffered several setbacks in their efforts to make their agribusiness profitable, a group of hard-working land reform beneficiaries in KwaZulu-Natal at last got the help they needed from an agricultural transformation organisation. Lloyd Phillips reports on the Gugulethu community.
The Agricultural Writers SA New Entrant to Commercial Agriculture winner in 2019, Dirk Louw, is showing that it still is possible to start farming from scratch. He spoke to Glenneis Kriel about what contributed to his success, his perseverance against all odds and his plans for the future.