Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development at Work

Agro-processing support scheme means benefits for agricultural sector in Gauteng

As part of the efforts towards the re-industrialisation of the Gauteng City Region, the Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (GDARD) has established The Super Brand Milling and Randfontein (Isigayo) Milling in line with their overarching Agriculture and Agro-Processing strategy.

To find out more about the support scheme, 702’s Joanne Josephs sits down with the GDARD’s Chief Director, Motlatjo Makaepea to talk about its infrastructural investment as well as their plans to develop smallholder farmers into significant industry players.

The aim of the strategy is to increase agro-industrialisation, to increase processing of raw agricultural materials that are coming out of the province as well as outside of our province. As a province, we are aiming to be the ago-processing hub of the country.

Motlatjo Makaepea, Chief Director at the Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

The aim is to increase the economic benefits that are coming out of those raw materials as well as to increase the number of jobs.

Motlatjo Makaepea, Chief Director at the Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

The department has offered small holder farmers across the Gauteng City Region support with infrastructure, production inputs, extension services and farmer support programmes. In doing so, emerging farmers are encouraged and enabled access to participate in the agri-food value chain.

Read more: Agri-parks, a saving grace for black land reform farmers

To date, 20 small businesses owned by emerging farmers have been legally registered and, are currently supplying big retailers and provincial institutions such as hospitals and rehabilitation centres.

In essence, it’s economic transformation and, creating opportunities for new entrants in the processing sector, in particular with regard to young black entrepreneurs as well as agro-entrepreneurs that are in the peri-urban townships as well as in the rural farming areas of Gauteng and, beyond Gauteng.

Motlatjo Makaepea, Chief Director at the Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

To radically change the structure of the economy, the department has made efforts to revitalise and mainstream the township economy by supporting the development of township enterprises, cooperatives and SMMEs.

Watch Joanne Joseph in conversation with Gauteng Department of Agriculture and Rural Development's Motlatjo Makaepea...

Applications are open for Gauteng agri department's agroprocessing scheme, click here for details.


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