Siyaphumelela Farmers Day – August 2015

This year’s Siyaphumelela Farmers’ Day was the fourth since the programme’s inception and the second since the arrival of the current Agriculture Programme team. The theme of “farm to gain” – “lima ukuze uhlomule”, was decided by the community-led Siyaphumelela Farmers Association. Even though it was women’s month, it was decided to not concentrate solely on women farmers.

Venue farmers dayFarmers Day 2

Above L-R: Set up of the Siyaphumelela Farmers Day & the Chair Lady of Siyaphumelela Farmers Group (Miss Magida Magwaza) addressing the farmers.

The day was very well attended with an estimated 200 farmers in attendance. Guest speakers included local government official Mr Bheki Zondi of uMshwathi Municipality, who spoke about services that the local government renders to the community. Masters student Thobekile Mkhize from the University of KwaZulu-Natal shared her research findings on the feasibility of the use of agro-ecological methods versus conventional ones.
Bheki Zondi uMshwathi MunicipalityThobekile Mkhize

Above L-R: Mr Bheki Zondi – uMshwathi Municpality & masters student: Thobekile Mkhize sharing her research findings.

Mr Ajallon Zondi of Nyonende Farms, an established commercial black-owned broiler farm, gave insight about ‘the tricks of the trade’ and how people in rural communities can be included in the commercial agricultural sector. He said that the key is hard work and working together rather than against each other. Mr Ndumiso Khumalo from the KwaZulu-Natal Poultry Institute gave a presentation about chicken care, while Musa Mkhize from Inkukukaya gave a talk about the poultry equipment that they have on offer and the advantages it presents, especially to small-scale farmers.
Ajallon ZondiMr Khumalo KZNPI

Above L – R: Mr Ajallon Zondi (Nyonende Farms) addressing the farmers & Mr Khumalo from KZNPI presenting on chicken care.

Chicken hutch Musa MkhizeDSC_0047

Above L-R: Mr Musa Mkhize demontrating the use of poulty equipment & a generous donation of seedlings from Sunshine Seedlings.

Prizes on the day ranged from traditional farming implements (wheelbarrows, hand hoes and watering cans) to point of lay pullets and indigenous chickens which were very well received by the farmers. Generous donation of seedlings from Sunshine Seedlings meant that the Siyaphumelela Farmers Association was able to put these up for sale and generate funds for the Association.

Prizes ready to be given outprizes farmers day

Above: Prizes handed out on the day.

Rosetta Stander, director of Zimele, was there and encouraged the farmers and applauded them for a job well done. The day turned to be a great success, with invaluable information shared and relationships built.

Michael and Rosetta Farmers Day 2015

Above: Rosetta Stander (Zimele Director) & Michael Malinga (Zimele’s Agricultural Co-ordinator).

Report by: Phumzile Ngcobo (Agriculture Field Trainer)

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