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MEC Qoboshiyane to open R32 million Wittekleibosch Dairy Farm

Sep 20, 2017
MEC Qoboshiyane to open R32 million Wittekleibosch Dairy Farm

Eastern Cape MEC for Rural Development and Agrarian Reform, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, will on Thursday officially open a brand new dairy farm in the Tsitsikamma, the first land to be returned to the victims of the erstwhile group areas act, who were the first land claimants to receive their land back in 1994.

"As part of its ongoing programme to commercialize the province’s agriculture, in the 2016/17 financial year, the provincial Rural Development and Agrarian Reform Department injected about R32 million to construct a new dairy boasting state of the art dairy parlor machinery milking about 66 cows at a go, yielding the owners 16 000 liters of milk daily, which is sold to Parmalat," the MEC's Spokesperson, Mvusiwekhaya Sicwetsha.

"At the height of apartheid, about 152 Amamfengu families from Tsitsikama were forcefully removed from their land, which includes the 650ha Wittekleibosch farm and surrounding farms.

"When the land was handed over to the 152 Amamfengu families in 1994, they formed a partnership with dairy farmer, Johan Du Plessis to continue dairy farming in the area, forming a commercial trading entity known as the Wittekleibosch Development Trust."

Sicwetsha said that in the commercial partnership, AmaMfengu contributed with their land, existing infrastructure, and dairy parlor machinery while Kleikamma Trust, owned by the Du Plessis, contributed with their technical skills and cattle.

"Prior to the construction of the new dairy by the department, the farm was using an old and dilapidated structure with capacity to milk 20 cows at a go, yielding about 10 000 liters of milk per day."

During the opening of the dairy, MEC Qoboshiyane and Head of Department, Lumkile Ngada will also announce results of the infrastructure investments made by the department into the Wittekleibosch farm benefiting the 152 AmaMfengu families and their commercial partners.

"The Wittekleibosch dairy, which is one of the actively producing land reform farms in the country, has an off-take agreement with Parmalat, directly benefit 152 amaMfengu families residing at the farm and has created 24 permanent jobs," Sicwetsha added.