Empowerment

Stock theft tops the agenda, but solutions are in sight

Sheep farming in KwaZulu-Natal is reeling from the effects of rampant stock theft, and as a result many farmers have either switched to cattle farming or left agriculture altogether. Issue date: 23 February 2007

Bumper harvest as farmers rise above race

Too often the South African dream of a united, prosperous farming sector has turned into a nightmare of land invasions, boundary disputes and farm murders. Now a small community of grape exporters in North West is showing the dream can come true if a few simple rules are followed. Issue Date: 9 February 2007

No to half-baked habitats

This is the first in a series of five articles on habitat planning in which habitat designer and wildlife biologist Ben Breedlove explains how to create a fully functional and optimised habitat when farming on a ­fragment of land, thus getting the most out of animals and visitors.

Communal land: a breeding ground for corruption

A law privatising millions of hectares of communal land has been held up for years by court action and opposition from traditional leaders. In the meantime, pressure on adjacent commercial farming districts keeps increasing, with tensions reaching breaking point in some areas.

Empowerment: the secret to its success

'You're either in, or you're out!' Glenneis Erasmus reports on the Hex River Valley farmers and ­farmworkers who are 'in' and making transformation work.

An agricultural odyssey Down Under

It's big, it's flat, it's a land of extremes - including blistering droughts. But while farming remains a ­fundamental part of Australian life, it has taken a heavy toll on the enviroment. Chris and Mathilde Stuart take a tour of ­Australia and discovered problems that make South African farmers' woes seem almost manageable.

Living his farming dream among sticks and stones

'Farming is not for sissies', says emerging ­commercial farmer André Thops of Olyfkloof farm in the Hex River Valley. He sites the lack of cash flow and access to funds as the key restraining factors experienced by ­emerging farmers. To counter these factors he diversifies his wine grape, olive and broiler chicken operations with cash crops.

From gardener to Farmer of the Year

Ponki Makanita has recently been crowned as Breedplan Emerging Farmer of the Year in Bloemfontein. Wayne Southwood reports on his remarkable journey from gardener and lorry driver to successful top farmer.

Hand in hand to ‘walk the commercial walk’

Beneficiaries of Rietspruit farm in Heidelberg, Gauteng, have formed partnerships with the former farm owners who are providing hands-on training and mentorship support programmes to help develop the emerging producers into fully fledged agricultural producers.

Female Farmer of the Year -Hard work and sweat pay off

Linda Nghatsane is someone who sees ­opportunity in hard work. Sound financial ­planning, good farming practices and a lot of sweat and tears have finally paid off for this former nurse. Chris Louw visited her on her small farm near Nelspruit in Mpumalanga.

Six-month land negotiations kick in

The expropriation orders served on Gauteng farmer OJ Botha and the ­Lutheran Church this month mark the start of ­applying the government's ­controversial policy of negotiating no longer than six months with owners of land under claim

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