The inaugural summit of the Western Cape Department of Agriculture highlighted issues related to rural security, food security and land reform. The summit took place in Rawsonville, Boland.
As a major economic driver, agriculture is responsible for creating over 14% of all jobs in the Western Cape.
The department’s Jerry Arries says: “Farmers need to take advantage of this opportunity for grants in their business, but unfortunately grants cannot support this person forever, so they will need to find other sources of funding so that we can to help new people get in the queue for funding and so that we can also get young people, women and people with disabilities to support them.
“I would actually ask people with disabilities, women and young people to apply for these grants and if they need support they can contact us to help them,” adds Arries.
Meanwhile, Western Cape Agriculture Minister Ivan Meyer said many projects were underway to improve rural security in the province. He says an attack on a farm is not just an attack on the individual farmer, but also on the economy.
Meyer was speaking at the department’s first municipal agricultural summit, held in Rawsonville, Boland.
“We have set up a rural security office, a digital rural security dashboard, and we have done an in-depth study of rural security in the Western Cape so that we can allocate the right resources to the different locations. I also did a monitoring visit to some police stations and I’m very happy that in some places the police are looking at some rural areas and in some places there just aren’t enough resources.
Western Cape Hosts First Municipal Farm Summit