Today's Big Stories

South Africa could learn from the US and use its vacant land for farming

Minister of Rural Development and Land Reform, Gugile Nkwinti has published a proposal that requires commercial farmers to hand over half their land to farm workers.

According to The Times newspaper, most of the farms in Gauteng stand idle or are used as scrapyards and second-hand car dealership.

Of the 276 000 farming units in Gauteng, including large-scale and small intensive farming units, 70% of them are not actively being used as farms.

Now something South Africa could learn from, AG Kawamura specialises in growing fruit and vegetables on spare pieces of land in the suburbs of Orange County in California.

Kawamura also farms fields on an active U.S. Naval Weapons Station, an abandoned golf course, and a decommissioned Marine airfield. He leases land destined for development, works it, and then moves on just before they break ground, so that no land is left standing idle.

Speaking to Kieno Kammies, Kawamura believes that their model is easily replicable even for South Africa.

We look at a piece of land and if the weeds look good, we look for a water source nearby then I know I can farm that vacant land

AG Kawamura, Farmer in Carlifonia- USA

Listen to the full conversation from CapeTalk's Breakfast with Kieno Kammies:

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