Matshediso Molale-Mooketsi, a Bonsmara and Nguni breeder from Lykso in the Greater Taung local municipality in North West, recently won the ABSA-ARC National Emerging Beef Farmer of the Year award for 2012. This recognition was bestowed upon Molale-Mooketsi at the recent National Cattle Championship awards ceremony, which was held at the Pretoria Show Grounds. As part of her prize, the 42-year old farmer will embark on an educational trip to Texas, USA – the world’s cattle capital – in April/ May 2013.
The judges attributed Molale- Mooketsi’s victory to proper record keeping, consistent participate on in the vaccination programme, good fi nancial management practices and self-discipline. “The experience I have gained in this scheme was worthwhile and I will continue to put it to good use – unlocking my potential as a female farmer. I am also grateful to the department of agriculture and rural development for having presented me with an opportunity to become a commercial livestock farmer,” said Molale-Mooketsi, who entered this competition for the first time. She started farming in 2008 with seven mixed-breed cattle.
Today she is the proud owner of 89 Nguni cows and 58 Bonsmaras. She has employed three permanent workers to tend to the herd. Congratulating Molale-Mooketsi on her achievement, the MEC for the North West department of agriculture and rural development, Desbo Mohono, said this milestone is the result of thorough planning, commitment and hard work. “Seeing benefi ciaries of the department’s farmer support programmes demonstrating commitment to the point of being recognised nationally is an encouragement to us. This will also increase the value we have attached to developing subsistence beef farmers who are prepared to do their part in livestock production and improvement programmes,” he added.