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Silicon Valley start-up debuts electric tractor

In December last year, agriculture technology start-up company Monarch Tractor, which has been referred to as the ‘Tesla of the agriculture world’, introduced the world’s first single unit, fully electric, driver-optional smart tractor.

Farmer’s passion for agriculture helps uplift her community

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.

Thorn tree leaves: a nutritious grain substitute in pig feed

Smallholder pig production in Southern Africa is constrained by feed shortages and the demand for grains to feed the ever-growing human population. This makes it important to identify alternative feedstuffs for pigs.

Managing a sheep flock before, during and after drought

Prof Tertius Brand, a scientist in animal nutrition at the Elsenburg Agricultural Training Institute, shares advice on how to manage a sheep flock during and after a drought in order for farmers to regain the profitability of their operations.

Using cover crop mulch

In many regions, there is a limited choice of crops that can be grown in a particular season. This provides an ideal opportunity to plant a cover crop to keep the soil organisms active and provide material for humus formation.

Escape to the beautiful Overberg

Brian Berkman recently travelled to apple and wine country in the Overberg region to experience true Cape farm hospitality at Paul and Nicky Wallace’s property in the Elgin Valley. Paul Wallace Wines offers a tranquil getaway for anyone looking for a farm break close to Cape Town, and is a special treat for wine lovers.

Award-winning mango producer says 100t/ha is possible

Jaco Fivaz, farm manager of Mohlatsi farm in Limpopo, is a pioneer of high-density mango orchards, which achieve a greater yield per hectare than conventional orchards. Pieter Dempsey visited this award-winning grower to find out more about his passion for experimentation, and how he manages a diverse mango business.

Tackling a widespread pig zoonosis

Diseases that spread from animals to humans are a serious health risk. One such disease, associated with pigs, is a particular problem in rural South Africa, says Dr Caryn Shacklock of Afrivet.

Error 404: the barriers to digital inclusivity

Progress towards digital inclusivity is threatened by growing digital dependency, automation, information suppression, and gaps in regulation and capabilities, notes the World Economic Forum’s latest Global Risks Report.

Getting a silage maize crop into the bunker chop-chop

In terms of its cost-benefit ratio, silage maize is arguably the best-value stored green feed for milk production systems in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands. However, to maximise the nutritional quality and quantity of this crop, it is important to harvest and handle it at the correct time and in the correct way.

Regenerative farming for livestock farmers

Faced with increasing financial and ecological pressure, livestock farmers have no other option but to become more sustainable and resilient. Fortunately, explains independent agricultural consultant Dr Louis du Pisani, the solution can be found in well-managed veld, which also contributes directly to the health of the earth.

Getting to know earthworms

More than 2 000 species of earthworm have been identified worldwide and there are 300 known species in South Africa.

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