Categories: South Africa

Eastern Cape potato co-ops cash in on commodity boom

Potatoes are the fastest-moving commodity in the Easter Cape’s OR Tambo district, said Ikhona Mvaphantsi, Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) spokesperson.

To cash in on this commodity boom, seven agricultural co-operatives in the district have started commercial potato production.

The co-ops are backed by, among others, Potatoes South Africa, the Eastern Cape Development Corporation, and the Kei Fresh Produce Market in Mthatha. The co-ops have already planted 26ha of potatoes in 2017, their first season.

Simphiwe Ntshweni, acting manager for the ECDC Imvaba co-operative fund, says some R3,4 million was paid out last year to the co-operatives, to buy fertilisers, seeds, pesticides, and other farming necessities.

The fund has disbursed some R81 million to 153 co-operatives since its establishment.

The seven potato-farming co-operatives are: Vukamntomtsha Agricultural Primary (Mthatha); Ngethemba Agricultural Primary; Mampingeni General Suppliers and Multi-purpose Primary; Living Dreams Farming Primary; Lusikiki Potato Farming Primary; Xhamla Mzantsi Farming; and Masiphakamise Ulimo Agricultural Primary.

Nomfesane Majova, business developer at the department of agriculture, fisheries and forestry, said the department has started a skills transfer programme offering skills development and training, to ensure long-term sustainability and profitability. The programme also offers support with record-keeping and financial management.

Share
Published by
Caxton Magazines

Recent Posts

  • Caxton
  • Use only text
  • World

Taking rooftop farming to the next level in Paris

Paris’ flagship farming project is nearing completion, with the city preparing to become home to one of the world’s largest…

1 day ago
  • Featured Home Image
  • How to Business

Why a farmer has to be realistic

A farm can only produce according to its potential and what’s invested in it, says Roelof Bezuidenhout.

1 day ago
  • Featured Home Image
  • Horses

Watch out for wasps in the stable

These aggressive insects can cause painful stings in humans and horses. Dr Mac provides some useful tips on treating your…

2 days ago
  • Caxton
  • South Africa
  • Use only text

1 000ha of Limpopo farmland burnt in protest action

It has been estimated that as much as 1 000ha of farmland near the town of Alma in Limpopo have…

2 days ago
  • Caxton
  • South Africa
  • Use only text

New traceability technology can give consumers peace of mind

While the traceability of retail items in the consumer goods industry has been in place for some time, the industry…

2 days ago
  • South Africa

Farmers urged to vaccinate livestock proactively

Livestock owners are being urged to vaccinate livestock proactively against vector-borne diseases such as Rift Valley fever (RVF), rather than…

3 days ago