Farmers in Western Cape have devised a means of helping themselves overcome the hash effects of drought that has befallen the country this season. South African farmers have partnered with Agri Western Cape to provide necessary relief items to those farmers who have been worse affected by the drought.
About 100 tons of animal feed was donated to the drought crippled parts of western cape’s agriculture sector. Receiving the kind gesture rendered to them, the Western Cape minister of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, thanked the farmers and the general public for their help.
Mr. Winde visited Malmesbury where the donation collected from farmers in Bredasdorp, Ceres and Malmesbury, was being prepared to be dispatched to Klipbrand.
At Grasrug Farm just outside Malmesbury, Winde personally gave special thanks to farmer Michiel Smuts and industrial stakeholders for their assistance in providing help to the troubled farmers.
“This is another great example of partnerships in the agricultural sector. Over the past few weeks, it’s been encouraging to see the private sector and fellow farmers join hands to assist those hardest hit by the drought. I’d like to commend all those involved for their efforts,”
“Under a high-growth scenario, the agri-processing sector’s gross value add could grow from R12bn to up to R26bn in the next five years,” Winde said.
Winde also revealed that looking at the weather projections, temperature would continue to rise, while there would be reduction in annual rainfall and to ensure the sector survived, the Western Cape government was promoting “conservation agriculture” which involved minimum soil disturbance, maximum soil coverage, and crop rotation.
Wheat farmers in the province who adopted it and have seen increased production and profit, reduced soil erosion, and improved water quality and soil health.
Also See: South African Rum Receives World Recognition
Meanwhile, report has it that the striking effect of the drought has destroyed most seeds that were planted in anticipation for rain while others that are meant to be cultivated this season are delayed. Market reports also show that many livestock would die of starvation if prompt action is not taken. But thanks to Agri Western Cape, who has been very active in coordinating relief efforts to offer assistance to the agricultural sector across the board; large and small commercial enterprises and farms and subsistence farmers are now tilling their parcels of land.
Speaking on the various aids they received, the Agri Western Cape CEO Carl Opperman expressed profound gratitude to those companies and producers who came to their aid.
“Agri Western Cape wants to thank every producer, company and individual who have contributed to our drought relief efforts in the past few weeks. We have received tonnes of donated feed from our producers and are thankful to SAB for offering transport at no cost. We are humbled by this gesture of goodwill towards the agricultural sector in this time of crisis.” he said.
More to this, the South African Breweries (SAB) Cape Region General Manager Desmond Jacobs said has revealed the strength of South Africans in the face of difficulties.
“While the drought is having a devastating effect on South Africa’s agricultural sector, the challenges it presents have revealed what are perhaps our country’s greatest attributes; that is our strength in the face of adversity and the compassion we have for one another to pull together and help each other in times of crisis,” he said.