Sarah Baartman District again produces top Eastern Cape female farmer

AUGUST 12, 2015

The Sarah Baartman District again proved that it has some of this province’s best farmers when a citrus farm, the Sunday’s River Farming Trust, walked away with the top prize at the 2015 Female Entrepreneur of the Year Awards ceremony that was held at the Wild Coast Sun and Casino in Mbizana on August 6.

The farm, based in the Sundays River Valley Local Municipality, took home R375 000 in prize money, including the R125 000 that was up in the export category.

Eastern Cape Premier, Phumulo Masualle, and Eastern Cape Rural Development and Agrarian Reform MEC, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, graced the event.

Last year, Luthando Farm PTY LTD – also based in the Sundays River, was the overall Eastern Cape winner and went on to win two major awards at the National Female Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. One was in the Best Producer Export category and the other one for the overall winner prize beating nominees from the other provinces.

Speaking at the event, Masualle said the awards acknowledged and rewarded female excellence in agriculture.

“We congratulate those who won the awards. Being considered alone is a sign of success because only the hard-working people are considered for the awards. All participants are winners. They must represent us well in the national awards because the award belongs here in our province,” he said.

Masualle said, with the support provided to farmers, he hoped the province will become the food basket of the country sooner.

“The provincial government has supported about 378 agribusinesses with agricultural services to access markets. Women farmers must make sure that their co-operatives, trading companies and communal projects have a slice of that cake.”

MEC Qoboshiyane said the province was optimistic that it will keep the national Female Entrepreneur of the Year award this year.

“The awards show that women in the province are working very hard and take agriculture as a serious business. I congratulate the winners because they make the Eastern Cape province very proud.

“They exhibit their hard work through the agriculture and businesses they are running. As government we encourage them to keep up the good work to have sustainable living and support their families. We will support them all the time,” said Qoboshiyane.

The provincial winners will represent the Eastern Cape at the national awards to be held in Durban before the end of August.

Image: From left to right... Mbizana Local Municipality Mayor Councilor Makhaya Twabu; Eastern Cape Rural Development and Agrarian Reform MEC, Mlibo Qoboshiyane and Eastern Cape Premier, Phumulo Masualle (right), celebrating with Sunday’s River Farming Trust's Buyiswa Dyenga, who won the coveted Female Entrepreneur of the Year award (Overall Category) during the provincial chapter of the annual awards held at the Wild Coast Sun and Casino on August 6.