By Duncan Masiwa
Mondays are usually a busy day on the South African agricultural calendar and today is no different. Right at the top of our watchlist is the deputy minister of agriculture, land reform and rural development, Mcebisi Skwatsha, conducting farm site visits in the Eastern Cape.
The Western Cape has a little more activity with three virtual farmers’ days taking place and agricultural minister Ivan Meyer officiating at the official opening of an upgraded milk parlour.
There is also largest agriculture and food systems event in Africa kicking of with its pre-session.
1. EC farmers table talk with deputy minister
Eastern Cape farmers will this morning at 10:00 have discussions with the deputy minister of agriculture, land reform and rural development, Mcebisi Skwatsha, on the Sunnyside Farm, Eastern Cape.
The purpose of the farm visits is to provide farmers an opportunity to interact and engage with the departmental leadership on their challenges and services delivery issues.
This is part of the minister’s oversight visit initiative which he is conducting at various Eastern Cape farms. It also forms part of government’s commitment to put people first, with the “Batho Pele principle”. Tomorrow minister Skwatsha will be at the Mantusini Dairy Farm, just outside Mthatha, at 10:00.
2. Outeniqua milk parlour relaunched at research farm
This morning sees the official opening ceremony of the upgraded milk parlour at the Outeniqua research farm near George in the Western Cape. The brand new parlour will be opened by Western Cape minister of agriculture, Ivan Meyer.
Later, he will also launch the “One Home. One Garden” campaign in the Southern Cape. This will be followed by visits to various vegetable gardens, including those at New Dawn Park Primary School in Pacaltsdorp in George and St Luke Primary’s community school garden in Brandwacht.
3. Western Cape buzzes with three farmers’ days
For the very first time, no less than three Western Cape farmers’ days will be held virtually today. That includes the Swartland Kleingraan Ontwikkelingsgroep (SKOG) day, as well as the Hopefield and Riversdale farmers’ days.
These days are hosted by the Conservation Agriculture Western Cape forum and supported by the Western Cape department of agriculture. They realised that, in the wake of the covid-19 pandemic, there still was a need to showcase the latest research and to allow farmers to “walk and talk” in their trials.
Questions can be e-mailed to Dr Johann Strauss, researcher on sustainable crop systems at the Western Cape department of agriculture, at JohannSt@elsenburg.com. Click here for more on the Hopefield farmers’ day, here for more on the Riversdale farmers’ day and here for more on the SKOG day.
4. Pre-session of largest agri event in Africa
The largest agriculture and food systems event in Africa is here and inviting you to the pre-session of a weeklong agricultural gathering of the tenth annual summit of the African Green Revolution Forum.
The virtual gathering running from 8-11 September 2020 is themed “Feed the Cities, Grow the Continent: Leveraging Urban Food Markets to Achieve Sustainable Food Systems in Africa.” This is a call to action to rethink food systems to deliver resilient, better nourished, and more prosperous outcomes for all.
Organized under the leadership of the president of the Republic of Rwanda, Paul Kagame, this year’s summit will see delegates from governments, civil society, the private sector, research community and development partners come together.