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KWANALU: WOMEN IN AGRICULTURE

We want to celebrate the meaningful contributions women make to the agricultural sector! Whether you’re a farmer, own an agricultural business, work in the sector from an office or at home, are an agricultural consultant, a large animal vet or are a farmer’s wife who helps to run the family business, we want to hear from you!

Share your story or nominate another awesome woman here! 

Upload a photo or video here!

INTRODUCING REMARKABLE WOMEN IN AGRICULTURE

Get to know the women that dedicate their time to supporting, uplifting, leading and maintaining agriculture in South Africa!

Sandy La Marque

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • CEO of Kwanalu
  • Passionate about adding value for all in the agricultural industry, Sandy works hard to protect the interests of Kwanalu members, and to inform and advise all those involved in the sector. As the brains behind the Kwanalu Women in Agriculture campaign, Sandy hopes to connect, collaborate and inspire all women through the wonderful examples that exist throughout SA.

Dipuo Ntuli

  • Zululand, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vice-Chaiperson at SA Canegrowers
  • Dipuo Ntuli is the first black Vice-Chairman of the SA Canegrowers Association, and leader in the Umfolozi Sugar Mill area. Dipuo, a mother of six, has been a sugarcane grower for 17 years and was a councillor in the Hlabisani Municipality and Mtubatuba Municipality, going on to the executive committee and assuming office as chairperson of the Community Portfolio. Dipuo is passionate about empowering and developing small-scale growers, and concentrating on the challenges the industry faces outside of politics.

Kathy Hurly

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Corporate Executive at SA Canegrowers
  • The most rewarding part of what I do is the implementation of projects and the faces of those who benefit and the ability to progress the people who work for me through mentoring and coaching. In Africa, women grow the food for their families and for markets. These women are economic powerhouses and each make a contribution to our economy and the nutrition and well-being of their families and communities. This they do facing enormous challenges that range from climate change to patriarchy.
  • I started off in a male dominated environment where even wearing trousers was frowned upon. Things have improved hugely in the workplace but we generally have to do a lot more juggling in terms of work home balance. You have to be resilient to survive to the level of the boardroom.

Moira Murray (nominated by: Kathy Hurley)

  • Greytown, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farm administrator
  • While her husband attends to sugar industry business Moira is the backbone of daily farm activities
  • “Her visible support for her husband in sugar industry activities at home and abroad and her ability to manage all farm activities in his absence.”

Nokuphila Phoswa (nominated by: Zolani Magadla)

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Livestock farming
  • “Women bring great customer service.”

Katherine Keal

  • Mtunzini, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Area Manager for Felixton at SA Canegrowers
  • I work with commercial growers on their financial models as well as assist them in any industry issues.
  • “Woman play a vital role in agriculture. Through their agricultural activities they are able to stimulate the rural economy and provide a level of food security in these areas.”

Mandisa Dlamini

  • Johannesburg, Gauteng
  • Agro-processing sector dealmaker at the Development Finance Institute
  • Mandisa is a dealmaker in the agro-processing sector; evaluating deals through conducting due diligence investigations to determine the bankability of transactions in the agro-processing sector, and primary agriculture (with a focus on high value, long term crops). She is an agricultural economist by profession and has predominantly worked in the agricultural finance space, mainly in commercial banks.
  • In the very first bank she joined; she was the only black female working in team of agricultural specialists in the country. This was not an easy role to fulfill, working in a male dominated environment and also service predominantly male clients. It was a daunting task which required her to be very brave, but one which equipped her with extensive knowledge, experience and valuable lessons! She grew up in a rural area with my grandparents who were subsistence farmers, and that is when she developed her love for agriculture. She never imagined agriculture as a business, but only a source of food. Pursuing her studies in agricultural economics opened her up to the endless possibilities in this sector.

 

Nicola Weimar

  • Johannesburg, Gauteng
  • Chief Economist for the Nedbank Group
  • Nicky Weimar has been Nedbank’s Senior Economist since 2000. Soon after receiving her Masters in Economics from the University of Stellenbosch, she advised government on economic procedures and policies in her capacity as an economist in the Central Economic Advisory Service, and has since integrated into the President’s Office. Her experiences in the banking-, securities- and brokering industries ensured her a broader knowledge of a wide range of fields within economics, including sector analysis, fixed investment trends and the relationship between real economic trends and developments within the financial markets. At Nedbank, Nicky has focused most of her energies on trends in the overall economy, looking at cycles in the economic growth, inflation and interest rates.

Denene Erasmus

  • Johannesburg, Gauteng
  • Editor at Farmer’s Weekly SA
  • Denene Erasmus is the editor of Farmer’s Weekly South Africa, the largest English-language agricultural publication in Southern Africa. She grew up on a family-run sugarcane farm and has won numerous international and national awards for her reporting in Africa. Her writing covers a broad range of topics related to agriculture, agribusiness, African development, rural development, climate change and conservation. She has a special interest in stories that examine how global and regional developments within the agriculture sector affects the sustainability of family-owned farms and farming businesses.

Karen Green (nominated by: Olivia Finnemore)

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Financial Manager for SA Canegrowers Association.
  • Karen strongly defends the ethical behaviour with the organisation.

Zanele Dhlamini

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farming selling eggs and chickens
  • “Everything we eat comes from agriculture, women play an important role to make sure we eat healthy food.”

Siphindile Sibiya (nominated by: Nandisa Mpanza)

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Siphindile is a farm manager, producing vegetables.
  • “Women in agriculture will have a good impact on the upcoming youth in realising that farming is an important industry that is not only gender based.”

Gugulethu Mahlangu

  • Witbank, Gauteng
  • Vegetable farmer
  • “Women are intuitive and meticulous. We can work the land with integrity and care. Food and nutrition are important to feed the nation, our community and most importantly, our families.”
Paula Beauclerk (Nominated by Linda Lusso)
  • Ixopo, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Dairy farmer
  • “Paula and her husband manage a large extremely successful dairy farming operation. Paula’s endless energy, enthusiasm, determination and, above all, compassion and love for her animals are an inspiration to us all. Woman add value to any sector of agriculture they are involved in through their attention to detail, compassion and work ethic.”

Nolwazi Mkhize

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small-scale vegetable farmer
  • “I hire locals to work at my farmland, I have one full time employee and casual workers too. I am planning on hiring more people since I have just leased another portion of land meaning I’ll be needing extra hands.
  • “Women can be in charge, create employment and be hands-on within their agricultural business.”

Thandi Dlamini (Nominated by: Sizwe Mchunu)

  • Nquthu, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Emerging poultry farmer
  • “Thandi uses her pension money to raise broilers and layers, stock eggs from established farmers, provide work opportunities to young men and women who assist her in running her emerging operation. She empowers fellow women and youth in deep rural areas.”

Meena Jaganath

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable aquaponics and aquaculture farming tutor for disadvantaged woman and youth
  • “Women should be given the opportunity to share their knowledge with the disadvantaged. I would start an indoor recirculating aquaculture system (RAS) to farm fish and vegetables. The sales would help sustain the farm overheads and then I would use this farm as a training facility to educate people and help them produce sustainable, organic food.”

Nicolene Botha

  • Winterton, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Secretary for a crop spraying company
  • “Women are the workers behind-the-scenes keeping everything running smoothly.”

Olga Nkoana (Nominated by: Tshidi Munyai)

  • Brits, North West
  • Soy bean and vegetable farmer
  • “Olga came out from humble beginnings and is doing practical work in farming, such as training and building the capacity of the young women in agriculture. Olga is also my mentor. Making women active participants of the agricultural economy has benefits that extend way beyond their own livelihoods — helping to improve the lives of their families and communities too. Female farmers in staking their claim in the agriculture sector through the use of technology, which in turn can help to reduce poverty, ensure food security, and boost the industry’s contribution to the economy.”

Wendy Channing

  • Curry’s post, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Alpaca farm manager (fleece and manure) and rosemary grower (essential oils)
  • “Women are often overlooked in agriculture as it has been a male dominated sector for so long. I feel we have to work so much harder and achieve so much more to be recognized as real farmers, regardless of how big your property or farm is or the quantity being produced. I also feel women tend to be more hands on and involved in the actual labour or process. In today’s economic climate, a lot of women have had to become entrepreneurs and take earning a living and supporting their families into their own hands resorting to agriculture in one way or another.”

Londi Khulu

  • Cato Ridge, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Teacher & small seedlings and vegetables farmer
  • “Women are the corner stone of our everyday life. When teaching a girl/women, she will be able to transfer those skills to the next generation at a very young age. I believe women should be given space to grow in the sector.”

Thobeka Manyathi (Nominated by: Clarance Malapana)

  • Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Sales and advisory on plant nutrition
  • “Thobeka assists commercial and small-scale farmers in KZN and Mpumalanga. She is committed, humble, a go-getter, a hard worker, and shows a willingness and dedication to assist and elevate farmers reach their optimal goals i.e. yield and profit.”

Makhosazana Dlamini (nominated by: Kathy Hurly)

  • Development Manager SA Canegrowers
  • Responsible for the development of sugarcane farmers
  • Her responsibility is to act as the voice of our regions ensuring that the needs of growers are captured into training and development projects and these are funded and implemented.
  • Her passion for developing farmers especially in deep rural areas allowing them to reach their full potential as food security and economic power houses in our deep rural areas.

Hannah Anderson (nominated by: Cheryl Anderson)

  • Creighton, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Calf rearing & dairy farming
  • Hannah is currently doing a learner-ship on a dairy farm in KZN, with the aim to be taken on in a permanent position in the near future.
  • “Woman can bring an added nurturing and caring side into the dairy sector. In my opinion it can bring balance and harmony and so often a woman knows she has to work that little but harder in a predominantly male field.”

Ayanda Sarilla

  • Esikhawini, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Pigs and vegetable farmer
  • “Women play a really big role in keeping everything together and staying organised.”

Daisy Moleko (Nominated by: Malusi Cele)

  • Soweto, Gauteng
  • Rabbit farmer
  • “Daisy runs the business and hosts programmes and  workshops on how to breed rabbits. Through her experience, she has developed a successful business model and assists young and unemployed youth in our community.”
  • “Women are pillars of our communities and play an important role in raising the future citizens of our country. Women are very passionate, emotionally strong and play a role in inspiring young people to take advantage and opportunities that are in agricultural sector.”

Linda Lusso (Nominated by: Paula Beauclerk)

  • Eston, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Macadamia and sheep farmer, as well as a fertilizer representative
  • “Linda is passionate about farming and everything she does she gives 100 % effort. She is a wonderful mum to her two boys and has instilled her desire for farming in them. Linda is also very willing to share the information she has learnt – nothing is ever too much.”

Lesetja Machacha (Nominated by: Kgabo Sepuru)

  • Polokwane, Limpopo
  • Vegetables and chicken farmer
  • “Lesetja is a dedicated, passionate young lady that is working hard to fight poverty in the town with hopes of helping the whole world.”

Sue Morton (Nominated by: Belinda Mclintock)

  • Thabazimbi, Limpopo
  • The “engine room” of The operations at a wildlife breeding centre

Karen Hammond

  • Midlands, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Sheep trader
  • “Women are the future of agriculture.”

Cingo Zimasa

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Junior Farm Manager Trainee
  • Zimasa is in the Sugar industry Youth Development program for interns and placed in one of the commercial farm in the South Coast as a Junior Farm Manager Trainee. She hold an honors degree in Agricultural extension and community development
  • Zimasa left her comfort zone in Eastern Cape to come and reside in Farm in the rural areas, very far away from glamorous lifestyle lived by her her peers in the same Academic profile. She manages the day to day farming of sugarcane, timber and macadamia nuts in a farm with more than 1000 ha that have more than 50% of men, but she isn’t intimidated by any of that, she plays her management role so well

Silindile Gwacela

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • In have a day job at JTI
  • I own an animal shop in Botha’s Hill called The Animal Guy
  • We sell animal feeds, products and supplements.
  • I am an animal my and my partner is passionate about animals, we met through animals and decided to open a shop to help our community by having their essentials close by and we also educate them on how to take care of their animals by doing home visits and sharing the knowledge we have.

Gcaleka Nomvelo

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Junior Farm Manager Trainee
  • Samke is part of the Sugar industry Youth Development program for interns and placed in one of the interesting farm next to Showe
  • Samke is involved in the farming operation of one of the interesting farms based at Showe. The farm is interesting as it farms cannibas on trial, which is a fascinating ingredient for our medical department. The farm also farms sugarcane and also has diversified its production with production of water that Samke is in control of and managing it to find customers and its operation
  • Samke is such an innovative youth that is goal driven future farmer in the making. She has great insights of a good farming business and can manage and control a business with various business enterprises.

Wynne Smith (Nominated by: Cindy Kidger)

  • Eston, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Agri-business owner and Beaumont-Eston Farmers Association Chairperson
  • “Together with her husband, she owns and manages several farms, farming instant lawn, sugarcane and Macadamia Nuts. Currently, Wynne is the only female fulfilling the role of chairperson of any of the farmers’ associations in KZN! It is her commitment and utter belief in the value of the role farmers play in the social and economic future of SA that sets her apart.”
  • “Women have a lot to bring to the table in agriculture. Their compassion, attention to detail, patience, determination and reasoning abilities are perfect traits to add value in any field of agriculture.”

Siziwe Mkhwanazi

  • Kempton Park, Gauteng
  • Aspiring farmer
  • “I wish to be part of farming in my home area in KZN and be able to assist my community and the youth with employment.”
  • “Women nowadays are improving themselves to contribute to business. their families, the country and economy.”

Tracy Gurney (Nominated by: Wynne Smith)  

  • Eston, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Agri-business owner, administrator and farmer’s wife
  • “Tracy and her husband have a hugely successful transport business; where they transport other growers sugarcane to the sugar mill. Tracy was part of the Eston farmers Association a few years back and is the first female to ever chair the Beaumont Eston Farmers’ Association (BEFA). She is very thorough person in all that she does, is one of the most generous people I know and is a community player – they lead by example.

Marianne Brown (Nominated by: Toinette van Rooyen)

  • Greytown, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Owner and founder of an agricultural start-up
  • “Marianne is a fierce leader, that stands her ground – a real trailblazer! She never stands still, is always willing to learn, is 100% committed, is passionate about the agricultural sector and is willing to help others grow and reach their potential.”

Tarulata J Patel

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Subsistence vegetable grower
  • “We, as mothers, are responsible for feeding the family. It is important to learn skills, uplift ourselves and provide for our families by growing our own crops and encourage the neighbourhood to do the same, individually and as a team.”

Sonke Ndlovu

  • Cato Ridge, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Animal production
  • “Being a female that majored in animal production, I’ve learnt that it is best to do whatever task given with dedication. The agricultural sector has helped in bashing the stigma that certain sectors are male dominated, as now we have farm owners and managers that are young females.”

Nomcebo Nokubonga Ndaba

  • Kwamashu, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Sells farm fresh eggs and live birds.
  • “Women help build the nation. Being in an agricultural business teaches one humanity, and uniqueness. Working together or as a collective teaches us that people are different, and their needs are not the same. Being women in agriculture moulds us to be better and raise a strong nation through trying times.”

Karen Truter

  • Paarl, Western Cape
  • Agronomist / Agriculturists for a fertilizer company
  • “For the past two months I have been working in the fertilizer (crop nutrition) sector of agriculture. In the future, I would be responsible for fertilizer recommendations and product development. Working as a women in the agricultural sector is not always easy, but it is definitely rewarding. I see my job as an opportunity to inspire a new and younger generation to pursue a career in the agricultural sector. I especially hope to inspire women to be bold enough to choose a career in agriculture. I am a firm believer in treating all people similar, disregarding their gender. If I live up to my own standards, I would be able to earn the respect of male “farmers” and in time change their perspective on women in the agriculture sector. I know this process will take time! I truly believe that doing my job (which I love), as good as I possibly can – that I can have a positive influence on commercial agriculture within South Africa. I believe that agriculture can bring people together not only by providing food but also by providing hope for a better future! By spending time with farmers, I hope to change the generalization of a male dominant sector to a sector where women are also accepted. I am incredibly passionate about agriculture and I most definitely believe that there is a place for women in this incredible sector – we just need the right people to give us a fair chance.”

Tshidi Munyai

  • Soshanguve, Gauteng
  • Aspiring beekeeper
  • “I am doing research, attending local beekeeping courses, joined local beekeeper, and am currently managing two hives.”

Kiki Mzoneli

  • Groutville
  • Farmer and community development leader
  • She provides farming insights in the farming business she manages in the area by providing fresh quality vegetables to the local community.
  • She provides farming insights in the farming business she manages in the area by providing fresh quality vegetables to the local community.
  • Women are the cornerstone of development and livelihood in all communities and they play a significant role in the agricultural production, in all value chain activities, women are the key drivers of development.

 

Rejoice Ncwane

  • Umthwalume
  • Sugarcane farmer
  • She does not only do farming to support her family and make money, but she is also involved in community projects that are done to empower and develop communities. During this difficult time of Covid-19, she was part of the Sezela growers leadership committee that were assisting poor community members with food voucers to fight hunger in these difficult times
  • Women are the cornerstone of development and livelihood in all communities and they play a significant role in the agricultural production, in all value chain activities, women are the key drivers of development.

Nothando Myiko

  • Jozini
  • Farmer
  • She is a small-scale farmer who grows sugarcane and vegetables. She has held many leadership positions in local agric structures.
  • She is hands-on in the farm and helps neighbouring farmers.
  • She is always strives to help her farming community and is not afraid to take the leadership role.

Thandazile Nqobile Shezi

  • Thornville, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Student and small-scale poultry farmer
  • “It’s time for women to show the world that there are no limitations to what they can achieve. Women are hard workers and very intelligent.”

Fhumulani Ratshitanga (Nominated by: Raesetse Baloyi)

  • Midrand, Gauteng
  • CEO of Fruit South Africa.
  • “Fhumulani facilitates the affairs of fruit industry exports, and communications between fruit associations with government and international countries. She’s at the centre of the South African horticulture exports and is the youngest CEO of Fruit South Africa.”

Nomcebo Ngobeni (Nominated by: Toinette van Rooyen)

  • Greytown, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Nomcebo leads one of the maize breeding team
  • “Nomcebo is fully committed to doing her part in feeding the world; starting at home and focusing our continent. She dedicates a lot of her time and energy to people development; teaching her team new skills and how to incorporate technology into their daily activities.”

Carolyn Baker (nominated by: Kathy Hurly)

  • Ballito, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Director SA Sugarcane Research Institute
  • Carolyn heads up the only sugarcane research facility in South Africa
  • Carolyn is the leader of the institute that provides sugarcane growers with all the research, technology and innovation required to make them sustainable and profitable.
  • Her role requires her to manage the expectations of a wide range of stakeholders and this she does with aplomb. Her experience has been acknowledged through her leadership of the research management portfolio at the International Sugarcane Technologists Association. She has chartered the institute through a number of difficult times with great success.

Vuyiswa Daniel

  • Pretoria, Gauteng
  • Selling chickens and green veggies to the community
  • Selling my veggies through underprivileged communities those who can’t afford to buy at supermarkets.
  • “I think women play a big role in their communities and to their families and should be put upfront.”

Velile Phakathi (nominated by: Kiki Mzoneli)

  • Jozini, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vilile is a go getter, and loves farming. 
  • “While women try do hard to keep fires burning, they have to look after everyone including the members of the community.”

Elizabeth Lungephi

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable farmer
  • Supplying & selling vegetables to the community

Sibongile Mbatha

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small scale farmer, former pig breeder, current goat breeder
  • “Women have a great potential in agriculture as a whole, as we see more women active and building great legacies in the industry. We have quite a great number of successful women continuously contributing to the growth of our South African economy which show the importance of women being involved in agriculture.”

Olivia Finnemore (nominated by: Kathy Hurly)

  • Mount Edgecombe, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Finance and Administration Executive
  • Works for SA Canegrowers’ providing services and products for the sugarcane growers in KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga
  • Without finance SA Canegrowers’ would not exist and the management of the finances is essential to the sustainability of the organisation.
  • Starting her life on a farm enables her to understand the needs of the growers. Of course making sure that we have a clean audit every year cheers the growers up who all know that every cent can be accounted for and our books are always open for scrutiny. Our stakeholders trust is very important for sustainable business.

Sivan Reddy (Nominated by: Sameshni Reddy)

  • Germiston, Gauteng
  • Student and Hampshire sheep farmer
  • “Sivan employs two permanent employees and is passionate about her animals.”
  • “Women play a vital role in agriculture. They are more meticulous in record-keeping and general admin, and their animal husbandry skills are more superior.”

Siphindile Biyela

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Environmental inspector
  • “In most sectors women are still labeled as not suitable, although it is good to see that this is slightly improving.”

Sharon Dakers (Nominated by: Wynne Smith)

  • Eston, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farm owner and runs a retirement home
  • Sharon is a very capable women who has managed to keep a successful farm running, bought up four children and now runs an old age home. 
  • “I believe that strong women in agriculture are essential – women bring a softer and gentler touch to an otherwise rather harsh world.  I remember when I married my farmer husband in 1987, I was a nursing sister, working at Greys hospital.  When I arrived – I started a feeding scheme for the labours children and then later opened a crèche for the staff’s children.  The heart and Care that a women brings is invaluable.”

Thandazile Nqobile Shezi

  • Thornville, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Student and small-scale poultry farmer
  • “It’s time for women to show the world that there are no limitations to what they can achieve. Women are hard workers and very intelligent.”

Sandra Bekker (Nominated by: Toinette van Rooyen)

  • Komatipoort, Mpumalanga
  • Plant breeder
  • “Sandra is passionate and loves being involved in a process that will ensure food on people’s tables. Her love for agriculture and plant breeding is displayed in the role she plays as being part of the team breeding for better and more nutritious vegetables for the African region.”

Zuziwe Lushozi

  • Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Student and intern at agricultural NPO that assists with rural development
  • “Women are, by nature, caring and nurturing. Women possess all the skills that are necessary for husbandry in agriculture. Women have the ability to lead and teach, young and old people to care for themselves and each other. Ladies ensure that more than the bare minimum is achieved in every single thing they do and they encourage participation and appreciation amongst all parties, especially in industries such as agriculture, where much care and appreciation is required consistently.”

Vumani Mthethwa

  • Mpangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Administration clerk and sugarcane farmer
  • Contributing towards the availability of sugar in South Africa. 

Laurie Miller (Nominated by: Sally Miller)

  • Ixopo, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Dairy and sheep farmer
  • Cedara and Saasveld graduate, works for Highbury West Dairy in Ixopo. Runs her own flock of sheep.
  • “Women bring an intuitive, maternal, nurturing aspect to their role in looking after livestock – an extremely important factor as animals required to produce require extra commitment to their care and well-being;  as well as a good eye to diagnose health issues early on and the knowledge to act timeously. I think this quality is one where women have the advantage over their male counterparts.”

Tracy Low (Nominated by: Lauren Louwrens)

  • Drummond, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small time intensive farmer
  • Serious work ethics and sacrifice for the well being of her animals. Everything and anything she puts her hand to thieves. She can make a business work out of any livestock. Completely unselfish in every way.
  • “Their role in farming is extremely important as they motivate others and have the nurturing instinct needed in certain farming sectors.”

Nothando Fanelesbonge Shangase

  • New Hanover, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farmer
  • “I have learnt a lot from this journey; from business management to technical skills of farming and growing as a person along the way. l wish to transfer what l have learnt to other women out there. It makes me smile 😊 to put food on the table for my society, either by my produce or through job creation; especially in times like these. To be part of food chain is amazing.”
  • “Let us make it our duty to change the agricultural industry perspective. I believe we could do this through adoption of technology. All sectors are talking about a 4th Industrial Revolution and we also need to implement it in our sector. We, as women in agriculture are brave, capable and hungry for change.”

Marlene van Rooyen (Nominated by: Toinette van Rooyen)

  • Pretoria, Gauteng
  • Research field scientist
  • “Marlene leads the insectory team, and all field and glasshouse work. I admire her for her passion, and her knowledge about agriculture, plants and insects! She encourages listeners when speaking about her line of work.”

Zimbini Mpurwana

  • Margate, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small piggery manager
  • “Women should not be evaluated in terms of gender, but in terms of economic contribution to the communities through innovation and commitment.”

Saadia Varachia (Nominated by: Sumaiya Varachia)

  • Assagay, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Organics farm manager
  • SAADIA is a small scale subsistent farmer with organics, poultry and livestock farming
  • Saadia has enabled several employees to get the necessary skills on farming before being able to venture on their own. She produces her own crops and supplies to several homes and NGO’s in the surrounding areas.
  • “Women have an important role to play in any sector they are passionate, be it agriculture or any other sector.”

Nosihle Mthiyane

  • Stanger, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Ensuring a healthy meal for the community
  • “Many of the world’s female farmers are smallholder farmers engaged in subsistence farming. Because women grow most of the world’s crops for domestic consumption and are primarily responsible for preparing, storing, and processing food, women play an instrumental role in both household and national food security.”

Chloe Clegg

  • Harding, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Involved in sugarcane, timber, macadamia, essential oils and vermiculture productions on the farm.
  • Chloe has a passion for soil health and have done many on farm trials to improve the soil of sugarcane crops, in turn improving the crop itself. 
  • “Women play a vital role in agriculture. We are dynamic, compassionate and ambitious. Juggling your home, home garden, veggie garden, commercial crops and staying passionate along the way is a skill. Such exciting time awaits in agriculture and I think with more women gaining the “Farmer” title, we are going to experience great changes in the agriculture sector. “

Khanyisile Dumakude

  • Richards Bay, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Moringa farmer and agro-processor
  • “I have employed five staff and take pride in the fact that I am supporting five households.”

Toinette Van Rooyen (Nominated by: Marlize Havenga)

  • Greytown, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Sunflower farmer
  • “Toinette is part of the breeding team involved in creating sustainable food resources for the land and its people! She is a passionate, go-getter with a winning attitude that is always motivating and inspiring other women to become agricultural activists! Women are under estimated in agricultural careers and I think we refer to earth as “Mother Earth”, because every woman involved in agriculture adds that ‘motherly love’ to our country and its land’s needs!”

Pretty Zaca

  • Richmond, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Ornamental horticulture and landscaping student and part-time sales assistant
  • “I grew up with a passion for farming and, in my spare time I volunteer on farms to learn old and new ways of farming. I also teach others who have gardens on their properties.”

Mandisa Dlamini

  • Kyalami, Gauteng
  • I evaluate deals through conducting due diligence investigations to determine the bank ability of transactions in agri-processing & primary agriculture.
  • “Encouraging women who own agribusinesses to package their businesses plans in a way that makes them attractive enough to be illegible for the funding they require to grow.”

Charlene Chubb

  • Mid Illovo, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Wife, mother, grandmother, administrator, entrepreneur
  • My sons farm different enterprises on the farm and I run the admin and HR side of the business and am teaching my daughter in law the HR. I am the secretary of the Mid Illovo Farmers Association and the secretary of a partnership transport business carting agricultural products.
  • “Women play an important part in agricultural as we are the backbone of the farming enterprise and often ensure that the financial aspect of the business is taken care of. Women are extremely adaptable and often land in positions in agriculture that they were not trained for.  South Africa women need to be placed in key positions for our country to become more sustainable as we often look at the betterment of the whole community and not for a position of power.”

Carmen Leisegang

  • Carmen is Group Financial Manager for Sunshine Seedling Services(SSS) and Essensoil an essential oils business.
  • Carmen completed her CA at Stellenbosch and her articles at Ernst and Young then worked in the USA for 2 years. She has now brought huge value to SSS with her valuable expertise and youthful energy. She is a great team player and is involved in all aspects of the business.
  • She has streamlined activities and introduced systems to move towards a paperless cloud based company making us far more efficient. She has only been with SSS for 8 months but is now a major part of the business.

Phindile Zondi

  • Bulwer, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Administrator, marketing and wife on an emerging poultry farm
  • “Women are a good support system and some are in the frontline in ensuring food security within our country.”

Christin Hunter (Nominated by: Toinette van Rooyen)

  • Greytown, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Marketing Communications Manager at a seed company
  • “Christin is passionate, she loves all people involved in agriculture, she enjoys what she does and is 100% committed to her company and industry.”

Lindiwe Mtshali

  • Vryheid, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable farmer
  • “Women are doing very well in this field of business. Women can produce so much, and can add to the value chain and to the economy of the country as well.”

Sinethemba Mdlolo (nominated by: Sabelo Khubone)

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Office administrator
  • Women play a very huge role in farming, the creativity they bring is wonderful, it has changed how we think of the future as male farmers especially in livestock since they even give those motherly touch to Farming

Metsana Kojane

  • North West
  • I am the founder of a beekeeping and agro processing company called Eden Roots that is also involved in horticulture, specializing in production of indigenous herbs
  • One of the God given gifts to women is that of nurturing. This special gift makes us good farmers. Farming enables us to feed our households and empower our communities. When women are economically stable, they become less vulnerable to gender based violence and abuse. Women have the power to restore, contribute to, and shape our country’s economy.

Paballo Motumi

  • Northern Cape
  • I am an Agripreneur.
  • I sell chickens(broilers and indigenous), eggs, sheep and goats
  • “Women are able to create jobs for themselves and others through their skills, not only in agriculture, but in every sector. They have proved that they are capable and are able to run positions that are seen as for men.”

Dale Gait

  • Eston, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Owner of an ornamental plant nursery
  • “I think woman play a huge role in agriculture. Most women are not scared of hard work as they have to support their families. We love seeing our hard work grow and we love the environment we work in. We are very aware of the effects of agriculture on our surroundings. We also know how important it is to teach our children about growing food for themselves.”

Jahni de Villiers

  • Pretoria, Gauteng
  • Labour and HR consultancy business.
  • Former head of labour at Agri SA 
  • “Women belong in every conversation where decisions are made.”

Storm Ch’e Storah

  • Creighton, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Wedding & Lifestyle Photographer which includes agricultural photography, Food Safety Coordinator at Creighton Valley Cheese, an independent agriculture consultant for compliance auditing on food safety matters.
  • “Behind every successful man is a great woman, pushing him to do great things! I pride myself in being capable of running my own business, raising two children, farming with purpose and taking pride in South Africa’s Agricultural abilities. We are a 3rd world country with 1st world abilities. I believe that woman bring heart to all farming operations.”

Thuli Promrose

  • Dannhauser, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Aspiring farmer
  • “Farming promotes job creation. Women in agriculture are strong women.”

Heidi Tredous (Nominated by: Lisa Robertson)

  • Wartburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Executive board member and Chief Financial Officer of an agribusiness
  • “Heidi is the first female Executive Board member at UCL Pty LTD.”

Nonhlanhla Mdlalose

  • Mtubatuba, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable grower
  • “I support my family with the vegetable I grow, but I would like to see more jobs created through agriculture for the community.

Nonkulyleko Ndlovo

  • Ulundi, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Intern student
  • “As women we have good hands in taking care of things so animal need people who will treat them well in order to behave”

Laetitia Vermaak

  • Howick, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Rabbit farming
  • “I believe women is natural carers. The rabbits need a lot of care and attention.”

Dineo Moeletsi

  • North West
  • Emerging Poultry and Livestock Farmer
  • “I believe women are very strong and powerful, they can do anything they desire and that they fill they are destined for. Women can turn Nothing into Something.”

Andile Zulu

  • Nongoma, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable grower and trader
  • “I think women can do better in agriculture to assist with nationwide hunger.”

Lindiwe Ngwenya (Nominated by Lisa Robertson)

  • Durban/Kloof, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Board member at an agribusiness
  • “Lindiwe is the first black female board member of UCL Pty LTD

Angelina Myeza

  • Umkomaas, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Student and lives on a farm
  • “I am passionate about farming and hope to make my mark on the industry in the future.”

Mbali Majozi

  • uMshwathi, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Student and aspiring farmer
  • “Women are proactive, they have enough time to spend on their crops, they plant vegetables and sell them on the street and to neighbours to find money for food and to send their children to university.”

Debbie Odell

  • Mooi River, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Creates and supplies innovative and quality feeds, and nutraceuticals to the agriculture industry.
  • “I own the company and develop and identify the products we supply. I studied agriculture and have been involved in farm animals’ health and nutrition my entire career.”
  • “Women have always played an important role in agriculture, whether it is in the front line or in supportive positions.”

Pamela Mthembu

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Aspiring farmer

Sithembile Mthethwa

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Sells chickens
  • “Farming is a sector that women can excel in.”

Kirsty Dicks (Nominated by: Amy Daugherty)

  • Bergville, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Sheep farmer and administration
  • “Kirsty is very dedicated to agriculture.”

Kwanele Myeni

  • Jozini, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Mushroom Farmer

Jacqueline McGladdery

  • Eston, Upper Tongaat, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farmer

Sibongile Mbatha

  • Zululand district, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Goat breeder and trader, and vegetable grower.

Divie Miya

  • Estcourt, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Piggery and poultry farmer

Belinda Mclintock

  • Himeville, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Horticulturist

Thembi Makhubu

  • Esikhawini /Richards Bay, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small-scale farm worker

Portia Hendricks

  • Mtubatuba, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Managing Director at a bed n breakfast and a chicken farmer.
  • “I sell live and slaughtered broilers. I also bought land where I plan to start a piggery and egg production. I would like to feed the community and create job opportunities for the community.”
  • “Women provide for their families and friends. They are no longer dependent on men.”

Silindile Sibisi

  • Melmoth, KwaZulu-Natal
  • I’m doing BSc Agriculture in animal science honors degree,  I have a small business that I’m currently running at home, broilers production which I wish to grow into a poultry farm one day, focusing on both layers and broilers.
  • “The superpower or the vision for women is always to provide, it’s more of caring about their people and business wise it’s all about getting out there and showing that we, as women we can do it too. We can successfully own businesses and come out on top with it. Some studies even reveal that over 40% of the women are in agriculture and contributing a lot to the economy mostly in developing countries. Their role is more emphasised in rural areas and can be seen in these areas.”

 

Zamaswazi Mngomezulu

  • Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Honours students in Bachelor of Science in Agriculture
  • I am working towards on increasing the number of females who own Science Degree who has an incentive to do farming as I am passionate on creating job opportunities for unemployed people.
  • “Women are involved in farming activities since most of them are unemployed and heads of some families. Women should be inclusive in land rights so that they can increase their farms and produce more to supply markets.”

Joyce Greengovendor

  • Mangete, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Worked as an agronomist and environmentalist. Have an Interest in flower production.

Mandisa Mnguni

  • Hammarsdale, KwaZulu-Natal
  • I like farming and have taught myself a lot, I read different kinds of books and research a lot about farming
  • “It’s important for us women to provide food for our homes… Most of us come from poor house holds we can eradicate poverty by farming and providing for our communities.”

Kerry Jordan

  • Ballito, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Grower and vegetable farmer
  • “Woman are just as good at farming.”

Nontobeko Mbeje

  • Blythedale, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Agro processing
  • “Create job opportunities for other families.”

Nomfundo Noluthando Ndlela

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Studied Animal production at FET College

Phindile MOTSAI

  • Richardsbay, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Financial Consultant
  • I have a small garden in my yard I planted vegetables and I have developed a love of farming

Welile Gumede (Nominated by: Wiseman Phewa)

  • Mandeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Crop farming 
  • Welile has been the supplier of Ilembe Enterprise for the school nutrition program.
  • “Women do not enter the farming sector for only business but for also feed our household, to feed the nation. They are easily bond to each other in order to achieve for the common goal.”

Vicky Alison (Nominated by: Sarah Jane van Rensburg)

  • Dargle, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Free-range egg farmer
  • “Vicky assists her husband in running the farm. Free range farming is a huge challenge, Vicky also has sheep and grows crops for the chickens – true biodiversity.”
  • “Women have great attention to detail and are a great asset to farming.”

Michelle Lesur (Nominated by: Donvae Hooker)

  • New Hanover, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Managing director of a sustainable agriculture team.
  • “Michelle champions change to healthier, safer food for all. Her ability to embrace tough conversations and inspire those around her to ‘be bolder’ is truly inspirational.”
  • “For too long agriculture has been seen as a ‘male dominated industry’. Woman have an essential role to play right now, to contribute to changing this perception and encouraging young ladies to pursue careers in agriculture. Sustainable food security is essential to the future of our planet.”

Phillippa Lycett (Nominated by: Caroline Richter)

  • Hilton, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farmer
  • “Vicky does most of the financial management on the farm. Her unstoppable energy and optimism, willingness to experiment and find novel solutions to problems is inspirational.”
  • “Women bring a different viewpoint to the environment. Their willingness to cooperate and communicate with others is a great strength.”

Zaheeda Majid (Nominated by: Fatima Majid)

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Co-farmer with her husband
  • “Zaheeda is the backbone of the farm.”

Arunthoothie Gounder (Nominated by: Kershnie Gounder)

  • Umkomaas, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small-scale, subsistence farmer
  • “Arunthoothie plants vegetables and sells at a market every weekend. She is passionate about farming. She is 67 years old and does not want to give up what she does.”
  • “Women show how strong and dedicated they are. Most women in farming are breadwinners and they create employment for other men and women.”

Kireshni Naiker (Nominated by: Twinkle Naiker)

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Animal and poultry science graduate
  • “Kireshni is young, ambitious, self-driven and hard working.”

Nqobile Shezi (Nominated by: Londeka Hadebe)

  • Grange, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry seller
  • Nqobile is young and she loves what she does. She has a passion for agriculture and is looking forward to learning more about the industry.”
  • “Women can do the things that man can do – abantu besifazane sekuyibo ababheka amakhaya.”

Makhosazane Lynn (Nominated by: Zinhle Nkomonde)

  • Shakaskraal, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Former poultry farmer and seller
  • “Makhosazane is well known in her community and is also a ward committee member.”

Qinqo Dlamini

  • Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Former farm management student, aspiring farmer and hairdresser.
  • “Woman care a lot about growing the economy, and passing on information to the next generation of women in agriculture.”

Mbalenhle Mbambo

  • Eshowe, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Data capturer and aspiring farmer.
  • “I currently have a small garden of amadumbe and sweet potato but I would like to be a farmer.”
  • “Land is a global issue and it contributes a lot to the economy. Women have a natural given talent of multitasking; hence, they handle agricultural activities well.”

Phophi Mavhungu

  • Mawoni, Limpopo
  • Student and working on a piggery and growing vegetables.
  • “I grow food that currently supplies the informal sector.”

Audrey Claassen

  • Otto’s Bluff, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farms with her husband and does the admin, is a driver and assists in buying plants, fertilizer and animal food.
  • “All male farmers have a woman involved in their life that helps them; be it his mother, wife, partner, which without, life would be much harder.”

Sue Marais

  • Richmond, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farmer
  • “I take pride in employing people and providing food for the nation.”

Thobisile Zamantusi

  • Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Animal welfare student
  • “It is important to have women in the field of agriculture because we must show that it’s not only for men but also for women.’

Sthembile Gwala

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Raising animals and farming
  • “Women grow most of worlds crops and are primary responsible for storing and processing food”

Courage Uahomo

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural Sociology student.
  • “I’m currently doing a master’s program (MSC) in Agricultural Extension and Rural Resource Management at the University of KwaZulu-Natal Pietermaritzburg campus.”
  • “Women are the backbone of farming.”

Thulie Promrose Tshabalala

  • Dannhauser, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farming
  • “Employ the community to avoid poverty. Women in agriculture are strong women.”

Nomusa Ntombifuthi Mbatha

  • Eshowe, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Teacher and grows vegetables at school and at home
  • “Women provide the poor and uplift our economy.”

Tanja Taljard

  • Botha’s Hill, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farms and supplies layer hens, and mobile dog parlour owner
  • “Agriculture can help the nation with a better future as well as healthy living.”

Thembeka Zondi

  • Howick, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Student and aspiring farmer
  • “I see agriculture as something that is encouraging to women – they’re able to stand on their own and do wonders.”

Thandow mqadi

  • Highflats, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Chef and vegetable and poultry farmer
  • “Women have got strength to build our economy and a bright future for all.”

Cele Samkelisiwe

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Junior Farm Manager Trainee
  • Samke is part of the Sugar industry Youth Development program for interns and placed in one of the interesting farm next to Showe
  • Samke is involved in the farming operation of one of the interesting farms based at Showe. The farm is interesting as it farms cannibas on trial, which is a fascinating ingredient for our medical department. The farm also farms sugarcane and also has diversified its production with production of water that Samke is in control of and managing it to find customers and its operation

Khethiwe Ngema

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Managing Director KwaCele Farming and GDK Trio.
  • She leads two entities which is KwaCele Farming Pty Ltd and DGK Trio Holdings and also a Trust Administrator.
  • She contribute to women empowerment by encouraging and being an inspiration to other women that are in agriculture in the area, they look up to her to see that they also have the potential and capability as she is leading such successful entity with high accountability,integrity and good leadership skills.

Nobuhle Sithole

  • Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • “I promote environmental awareness in my school. I have started a vegetable garden and flower garden. At home I have vegetable garden, goats and chickens.”
  • “Women are food providers in most homes, so they can be empowered in agriculture.”

Nonsikelelo Khumalo

  • Gingindlovu, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small scale poultry and vegetable farmer

Busi Khoza

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Cattle farming and vegetable production

Lungile Ngcobo

  • Pinetown, KwaZulu-Natal
  • New farmer
  • “I want to be a farmer full time, supplying small to medium markets.”
  • “Women are biggest contributors to the economy from the agricultural sector. They are able to form cooperatives and start small to feed their families.”

Sithembile Gabela

  • Emaphephetheni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Subsistence fruit and vegetable grower
  • “Women are innovative, they always look for sustainable solutions to any challenges. The increase of women in the agricultural sector has decreased the social strains in most communities.”

Vusokazi Mafu

  • Bizana, Eastern Cape
  • HR officer and piggery owner

Pontso Mayezana

  • Kokstad, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Lohman layer chicken breeder and sells eggs

Thembelihle Khuzwayo

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Social worker and aspiring farmer
  • “It’s time to change the face of agriculture by empowering women.”

Sithembiso Dube

  • Rural area, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Community vegetable garden worker
  • “Women play a very big role in producing food for families and the community.”

Thobile Fihlela

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Subsistance grower
  • “Women are hard-working and to be independent farmer to help create job opportunities

Nonhlanhla Shabalala

  • Darnall stanger, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farm owner. I farm sugarcane, vegetables and sheep breeding
  • “Women play a huge role, they employ mostly women and care. They understand the livelihood and sorrows of other women.”

Zama Mkize

  • Matatiele, KwaZulu-Natal
  • My passion for sustainable living
  • ‘I believe that as a woman whatever I put my mind into I can achieve it. Women are home berears, as a woman I must work the land provide for my family, I must work the land for me to be a merchant. I see a field and I consider it my bread comes from the soil.’

Ncamisile Sithole

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • I like to farm and have small garden
  • “Women feed the community and their family.”

Zibuyisile Mkhwanazi

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • I like to dedicate myself to it to improve my standard of living
  • I have a vegetable garden so far
  • “Women who plough and keep the gardens in the farm.They work hard to get what they want to gain in the soil.”

Noxy Mthembu

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • I plant vegetables
  • I plant my own garden and feed the poor people with fresh vegetables for free.
  • “It’s very important, gives back power and confidence to disadvantage gender.”

Gladys Xulu

  • Stanger, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Office administrator
  • I have just gone back to my love for gardening. Started growing vegetables in my back yard. I’m hoping to go big.

Ntando Thusini (Nominated by: Nonku Ngcobo)

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable production and processing
  • Farmer and farm manager
  • Ntando started from nothing and is now an exporter of fresh vegetable
  • “Women are pioneers of anything that needs growth. Women are resilient and are naturally builders of wealth.”

Zinhle Matheza (Nominated by: Sanele Kubheka)

  • Eston, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farm manager
  • Poultry
  • Managing and developing workers

Thandi Nkosi (Nominated by: Ntando Nkosi)

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Thandi grows the vegetables of which she sells 
  • Thandi contributes towards empowering other women and gives others the opportunity to improve their skills
  • “Women play the vital role in improving the food security and the economy”

Lelolanga

  • Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Stockist of Animal Feeds and Medication
  • Sales to small scale farmers
  • “Women are an inspiration to those around them as they inspire. We hold our community and feed them.”

Thuthukile Mhlungu

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • ECD centre manager and agricultural graduate
  • Consultation and support to upcoming  and small scale farmers.
  • “Women are nurturers by nature, full of love and care. Anything they touch, can easily turn to gold. They give life.”

Lungile Chili

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Lungile has a beautiful vegetable garden which she operates everyday wishing to do commercial farming one day.
  • “Women grow most of the world crops for domestic consumption and are responsible for preparing, storing, and processing food, women play an instrumental role in both household and national food security”

Karin Russell

  • Ballito, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Natural Health Consultant
  • I farmed when I was younger. I have an organic (permaculture) herb and veggie garden.
  • Try to stick to a Zero Waste philosophy.
  • Consciousness and capable caring for our mother earth.

Kerry Rowlands

  • Hilton, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Technical Manager (Horticulturalist) at Zuluflora
  • “Our business is driven by women! Our staff are 80% women, as we find women pay better attention to detail and are more committed to their jobs and supporting their family.”

Chuma Nqunqa

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Community Development Practitioner and poultry farmer
  • “Women are hard workers”

Nonto Mzimela

  • Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable and crop production.
  • Production and administration for the Cooperative
  • “Producing food has always been a readily available way of putting food on the table for the family. Today, women must be supported for bigger agricultural activities.”

Nokuthula Ndlovu

  • Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Civil engineering technical and crop farmer
  • “Women make up the vast majority of the population but their representation in fields like Farming and Agribiz is reflective of this, so women should cement their positions in such fields and shine like the stars they are.”

Snegugu Dludla

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small scale crop farming and poultry farming
  • “Women play the very important role as they are the ones that makes sure that children get taken care of and they are adding value to our community and economy”

Nwabisa Mkize

  • Umzimkhulu, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Environmental scientist
  • “I think women should definitely be represented in sector because they are the back bone of agriculture in the country.”

Sandy Adamson

  • Underberg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Works with husband in an equal partnership on a dairy farm
  • “Every man needs a woman and every woman needs a man in a successful business.”

Sinqobise Qwabe

  • Umfolozi, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Agricultural Extension Officer
  • I help farmers in decision making and ensuring that appropriate knowledge is implemented to obtain the best results with regard to sustainable production, sustainable livelihoods and rural development in general.
  • “Women make essential contributions to the agricultural and rural economies in South Africa by their involvement in agricultural labour force and food processing industries”

Nothando Mkhize

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Crop farmer
  • Field worker, general manager and finance
  • “Women plant food to nourish not only their families but the community at large. The food that full of nutrients and eliminate poverty.”

Prudence Jali Staff

  • Harding, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Teaching and Diploma in animal production
  • Raising & selling broilers during Christmas and teaching agricultural science at school
  • “Women feed their families.”

Velephi Ntini (Nominated by: Anna Ntini)

  • Umkomaas, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Woman farmer in sugarcane
  • Small scale farmer. Taking care of the farm and other women
  • “Women give communities job opportunity. Shows communities another way for success in life.”

Nozipho P Gobhozi (Nominated by: Thembi Mbhele)

  • Malangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farmer owner and farmer. 
  • Employing people especial employing women
  • “Women are the back bone of the families. If we have more women who are farming or owners of farm that means families will never suffer.”

Zethembiso Mbhele (Nominated by: Zethembiso Mbhele)

  • Inanda, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farming management
  • Grows chicks, and plants vegetables
  • “She starts her projects. She puts bread on the table.”

Ncamisile Lydia (Nominated by: Scelo Luthuli)

  • Glendale, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farmer
  • Ncamisile gives eggs to the needy community members for free. She loves her work she is very dedicated to agriculture she is indeed an inspiration .
  • “Women must be encouraged to engage on agricultural activities and must be motivated.”

Lucy Manzini (Nominated by: Zah Mbhele)

  • Margate, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Director to Oatlands Mushrooms
  • Growing oyster mushrooms

Thembi Ngema (Nominated by: Samukelisiwe Khanyile)

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small scale sugarcane farmer 
  • Mrs Ngema is a very passionate woman about farming, she is hard working. Thembi is a member of South African Women in Sugarcane finally she is also a secretary for Amatikulu Mill Cane Committee. 

Delisile Ngcobo (Nominated by: Thobekile Msomi)

  • Kwamashu, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farmer and seller
  • Making a difference in her community by creating employment and teaching kids about poultry is her dream so they maybe one days kids become farmers. Delisile is very passionate about youth development.

Samkelisiwe Phakathi

  • Dundee, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Graduated in ND: Agricultural Management
  • I have recently started a garden at home, I have planted cabbages, spinach and onions. Hopefully I will produce good quality so I will be able to donate the vegetables to an organization in my town, where they provide food to people who can’t provide food for themselves. 

Thobeka Xolo

  • Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Doing agricultural studies and currently trying to start a small scale farm
  • “Women play a very big role in agricultural production because they grow crop either for commercial or substantial reasons. They are mostly responsible for preparing, they store and they are also mainly responsible for processing agricultural productions.”

Judy Stuart

  • Howick, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Future Farmers Foundation
  • I have farmed most of my life and am involved with assisting youth who are passionate about agriculture to gain access to the sector.
  • “Women have for a long time not been acknowledged as farmers and have faced discrimination.  However, in the rural communities women have always been responsible for vegetable gardens  and have worked hard to provide food for their families. Women are often practical and responsible and committed. Many of the young women who come to Future Farmers are inspired by their grandmothers in particular. These grandchildren come to Future Farmers and excel, both locally and overseas. They become managers on commercial farms and are really good at what they do.”

Bongiwe Ngcongo

  • Umbumbulu Area, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Part time lecturer and poultry farmer
  • “I believe that women play an important role in terms of agriculture by providing more employment, and striving in the field work we find women who own business in farming cattle’s, and  all types of Animals it not just a male dominant sector but we have proven that women are also playing a vital role when it come to Agriculture, and also increasing to our Economy and GDP.”

Nokwazi Mhlongo

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Aspiring farming  
  • “Women being the creatures that excel in everything they do, I think they have invested so much in Agriculture these days and they are doing so well to boost the economy of the country through agriculture.”

Nonhlanhla Mdlalose

  • Mtubatuba, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small scale farmer, selling vegetables
  • “The important role women play in agriculture is to format job opportunities to unemployed people.”

Nkosazana Sicwebu

  • Pretoria, Gauteng
  • Farmer and agricultural studies 
  • “Women are exceptional creatures they fit everywhere and anywhere everything they touch turns into magic, women feed the nation, woman produce for the world.”

Deidre Thiele

  • Paulpietersburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farm manager and livestock farmer
  • “Getting women involved in one of the most important sectors. Attention to detail especially when it comes to livestock.”

Thandi Dlamini

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Fruit and vegetable delivery service.
  • I source my produce from small scale farmers.
  • “Women play an important role by breaking the stereotype that farming is a male dominated industry.”

Bongiwe Mkhize

  • Weenen, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Broiler farming and vegetable production 
  • “Women equip young people and other women with the knowledge to be successful farmers.”

Nobuhle Sithole

  • Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Teacher
  • “I have started a school flower garden. We are also an environmental school and I am the co-odinator of the Environmental Committee.”
  • “Women play a very big role – they are the providers at home.”

Latitia Langeni

  • Mpangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable farmer
  • “It is seen as a male dominated sector, I have seen a lot of woman striving in it and I believe we can educate the future generation about agriculture and the importance of it. As small as a backyard garden.”

Phindile Shandu

  • Ulundi, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Crop farmer 
  • Encouraging women who own agribusinesses to package their businesses plans in a way that makes them attractive enough to be illegible for the funding they require to grow.
  • “Women in agriculture especially young women who have energy and passion in agriculture are most opportunist women in the whole world because our government open his hand to women to create there own farmers whether could be at home in the village or wherever his creating young  independent woman to stand on there own.”

Christina Immelman

  • Tweedie, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Co-manage a mixed use farm
  • “Women bring knowledge, leadership, mentorship and financial advice to the agricultural sector.”

Lusiwe Sangweni

  • Mapumulo, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Egg and vegetable farmer
  • “If you educate a woman, you educate the society. Women play a key role in food security, they are the backbone of rural economy especially in developing world.”

Iona Stewart

  • Merrivale Heights, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Dairy farmer. Specialist beef researcher in the department of Agriculture. Now retired and farming beef on a small scale farm.
  • “As a pioneer female in the men’s world of agriculture I hope I proved over the years that women are perfectly capable of performing as agriculturists. As regards the well-fare and care of animals I do believe we have a greater empathy and understanding of their well being, e.g a mother’s bond with her offspring.”

Tamlyn Williams

  • Inanda, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Assistant farm manager
  • Manager of 150 ha macadamia and 100 ha of banana. I also run the companies administration department
  • “Woman are able to multitask.”

Lusiwe Sangweni

  • Mapumulo, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Egg and vegetable seller
  • “If you educate a woman, you educate the society. Women play a key role in food security, they are the backbone of rural economy especially in developing world.”

Maud Nokwabuza

  • Inanda, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable grower and ex poultry farmer
  • “I believe in women power, and there’s nothing that we can’t do as women as long as u put your mind to it.”

Chuma Nqunqa

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farmer
  • “Women play a major role as they are hard-workers and use it to provide for their families.”

Rhonda Coles

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small scale broiler chicken farmer
  • “I worked in Forge Agri for nine years. I have just started a small scale broiler business. Hoping to contribute to food security.”

Sthembile Gwala

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Vegetable grower
  • “Women play a huge role in agriculture as they are the one’s who grow passion for farming in their children, they grow food to feed families and grow to sell and cater for all the needs of their families. Agricultural creates food security.”

Snegugu Dludla

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farming
  • “Women are caring by nature and farming need love and passion.”

Kylissa Maistry

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • “I’ve always felt the need to some day make quality goods and produce being made accessible to individuals in the community of all income brackets.”
  • I have experience in ways such as producing crop and giving them to free to the less fortunate in the community. 
  • “There are barely enough women in the agriculture sector. It’s important to break down barriers and stereotypes which in the past limited women from being involved in the agricultural sector.”

Ntombhi Mthethwa (nominated by: Immaculate Sibisi)

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Sugarcane farmer
  • Ntombhi’s farming activities provide for her family and have for many years. She is an example of how women play a dominant role in the small scale agricultural sector. As a farmer she is part of those who contribute substantially to our economy by her crop and also providing employment to those in her area.
  • “In a sector where we are fighting for gender equality, Mrs Mthethwa leads by example through her production and being the chairlady in her zone and she is also part of the board of women who are leaders in the Felixton area”

Linda Hempson

  • Creighton, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Calf and heifer rearing and beef farming
  • “Being involved in young stock is extremely rewarding but needs a lot of attention to detail and dedication which is my strength. I enjoy being hands on and feel I can bring a nurturing and compassionate aspect to my work which is often over looked in a very busy, stressful industry.”

Maud Mphuthi (nominated by: Nobuhle Moholisa)

  • Mpumalanga
  • Maud specialises in Piggery farming and has recently branched into vegetable farming too.
  • “Being very close to someone like Maud who, I understand how important representation is. Women have recently risen in this sector and it plays a huge role in proving that we deserve equal opportunities as males.”

Nonhlanhla Malubane

  • Mpumalanga
  • Passionate sugarcane farmer and fertilizer supplier 

Balungile Hadebe (nominated by: Bandile Nzimande)

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Garden with beautiful vegetables also has chickens
  • “By empowering woman you empower the nation, woman are truly the rock of a nation when they do things they don’t do it for themselves they do it for their families and communities.”

Fezeka Tabu

  • Eastern Cape
  • Works Department of Public Works and Infrastructure
  • I have a vegetable garden that I have started during lockdown and it has started to give me reward. I also assist other women to establish their own community vegetable garden.. My vision is to turn the illegal dumping site to vegetable gardens in our communities.
  • Through my experience in enterprise development, I also want to assist communities to establish their own gardens. Recently on my birthday, 17th August I have donated vegetable plants to over 50 households in the Zwelitsha Location and donated other 800 seedlings of spinach and turnips to a Special School in Dimbaza that has 250 children in their boarding house. They have a garden where they plant their own vegetables..
  • “Women by nature are nurtures and the women can play an important role as primary care givers by educating the kids on importance of producing your own food. And by virtue of primary care givers they are the one that are expected to put food on the table and if there don’t have an income agriculture could provide a relief by ensuring that no one goes into sleep with an empty stomach.”

Shonisani Ndou (nominated by: Fhumulani Netshisaulu)

  • Limpopo
  • Female Farmer
  • Farming different crops and vegetables 
  • Shonisani started with 8 hectares but today she has 18 hectares. She got 1st position in the Vhembe District Female Farmer for small holder. She recently bought a truck to transport her products to the market.

Carmen Mc Farlane

  • Eastern Cape
  • Beauty therapist come farmer
  • On our farm we grow multiple vegetables – cabbage, spinach , meillies , sunflowers. I am involved from the planning to picking to packaging even delivering in some cases.
  • “Women are strong. Yes it’s the fathers land but the mother tongue! We play a different role to me with our nature , sensitivity , love and care towards staff even our produce.”

Gladys Xulu

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Grows and sells vegetables.
  • Aspiring Farmer.
  • “You empower a woman you empower the community and the nation”

Andile Matukane

  • Mpumalanga
  • I am a researcher, farmer, agricultural facilitator/assessor and a traveller. I do farming and training.
  • Farming/ Agripreneurs
  • Mostly I work with agricultural graduates, upcoming farmers and successful farmers. I train and facilitate agricultural trainings to upskill young people and also produce vegetables.
  • “Women are able to multitask, they are able bring change and feed tons of people.”

Thandeka Kubheka

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farming and vegetable farming
  • I sell to community around my area. I encourage neighbour’s and friends to have their small gardens
  • “They say a woman’s place is in the kitchen. You can’t get to the kitchen with no food. As women we provide food for our families so we must have ways of doing Agricultural activities so as to provide cheap and healthy foods in our homes.”

Sithembile Gabela

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • I grow vegetables with other ladies in my area
  • “Women are growing crops from home gardens to bigger farms, they provide food to their families and communities.”

Lungile Mthembu

  • KaMkhizwane, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farming broilers & layers
  • Time, money and transfer of skills to the farm staff.
  • “We need more exposure. Women farmers have always been around but not known.”

 

 

Nothando Manqele (nominated by: Samkele Mjadu)

  • Gingindlovu , KwaZulu-Natal
  • Small scale vegetables farmer
  • Owns a small farm where she hires young women to work
  • She is dedicated to her work

Noxolo Ngubane

  • Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Animal production and crop farming
  • “Empowering women in agriculture is great as they have this drive and dedication”

Linda Hodson (nominated by: Stacey Eaglestone)

  • Creighton, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Calf and heifer rearer
  • By rearing healthy and thriving heifers with minimal cost.

Ezelle Berry (nominated by: Kathy Hurley)

  • Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal
  • General Manager Umzimkulu Mill Group Board
  • Ezelle manages the cane supply for the Umzimkulu cane growers and administers the affairs of the local grower association. 
  • “Attention to detail and passion for her area to succeed.”

Nothando Buthelezi (nominated by: Craig Breetzke)

  • Wartburg, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Agriculture Business Advisor
  • Works for SA Canegrowers
  • “Women always think out of the box so that they can find ways to be of assistance.”

Nicki Brighton (nominated by: Kathy Hurley)

  • Howick, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Author food activist and eco warrior community angel
  • Respecting our natural resources and assisting local communities value their heritage.
  • She works within the community bringing knowledge to school children and more recently through her story telling.
  • She is at one with the ecosystem in which she lives, using her gifts to educate and inculcate the same love in her neighbourhood and community.

Nomthandazo Buthelezi

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • Poultry farmer
  • “The area where i am living agriculture is very important to combat poverty and in our disadvantaged society it will create great opportunities not only myself but also my fellow sisters and brothers will benefit and uplift the economy of our African soil through farming.”

Silindile Gwacela

  • KwaZulu-Natal
  • I own an animal shop in Botha’s Hill called The Animal Guy
  • We sell animal feeds, products and supplements.
  • I am an animal my and my partner is passionate about animals, we met through animals and decided to open a shop to help our community by having their essentials close by and we also educate them on how to take care of their animals by doing home visits and sharing the knowledge we have.

Bev Stainbank (nominated by: Kathy Hurley)

  • Mid Illovo, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Administrator for a cane operation
  • “Women are committed, professional, kind, engaging and interested.”

Thandeka Ntshangase (nominated by: Craig Breetzke)

  • Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Area Manager, Umzimkulu
  • Works for SA Canegrowers
  • “Thandeka looks after the interests of both large and small scale cane farmers in the area. She provides financial and economic assistance to them.

Allison Brown (nominated by: Kathy Hurley)

  • Doornkop, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farm Administrator Extraordinaire
  • Allison manages the administration of the farming business
  • With enterprises in the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal growing both crops and livestock and contracting for other sugarcane farmers, the administration side of the business needs to be run just so. Allie does just this.

Sinothando Dube (nominated by: Richard Nicholson)

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Economic Research
  • Sinothando is the Researcher in Economics at the South African Canegrowers Association
  • “Woman, especially in Africa are the backbone of the rural economy and need to be recognised as such. They also play significant support roles in the sector through research.”

Idah Mthembu (nominated by: Immaculate Sibisi)

  • Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Farmer
  • Owns sugarcane fields and is an emerging poultry farmer
  • Her dedication and drive to venture into new avenues

Heather Cooper (McLoed) (nominated by: Kathy Hurley)

  • Scottburgh, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Administration Manager for the Sezela Cane Growers Association
  • “Always pleasant, calm and reliable.”

Karen Close (nominated by: Olivia Finnemore)

  • Durban, KwaZulu-Natal
  • HR Manager at SA Canegrowers
  • Karen manages the human capital of the organisation, as Human Resources Manager. She is strongly motivated to ensuring the right people are employed by the organisation. 
  • Karen is enthusiastic and motivating, the glue that holds the teams together, ensuring their well-being, focusing on building an ethical team as well as ensuring the organisation remains compliant with the relevant laws and regulations relating to employment.

Lindiwe Dlomo

  • Mooi River, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Studied agriculture and an intern at a flower nursery.
  • “Women are the foundation of everything, especially in the Agricultural sector. Their natural nurturing ability goes above and beyond when it comes to handling produce. Attention to detail is a given. This assures that the farm’s best qualities are showcased. Lastly, multi-tasking allows us to handle complex situations at once with great effort and care. Women are the FUTURE!”

Riyashna Rampersadh

  • Centurion, Gauteng
  • Associate Product Manager – Monogastric Nutrition
  • I am a Professional Animal Scientist, with +9 years of Agricultural experience ranging from broiler farming, premix and feed formulation/nutrition, animal feed safety as well as feed additive product management.
  • “Women make houses, a home. They turn a little into a whole lot and bring a sense of compassion, care and dedication within the industry. They build each other up, and often times, have to work a million times harder to be seen, heard or taken seriously. Women, by default, are headstrong and bring a whole different perspective to agriculture, and ultimately, the nurturing of any endeavour.”

Riana Green

  • Western Cape
  • Cattle and chicken farmer
  • To provide food and making sure things work out to give back to the community
  • “Women have more knowledge about how things work and put more hard work in”

Nozipho Mngomeni

  • Harding, KwaZulu-Natal
  • Promotes agriculture on Facebook and at schools for the Department of Agriculture
  • “Women play a vital role in agriculture, because they can easily identify challenges. They are the ones involved in soup kitchens; using fresh vegetables that they produce or selling their vegetables and donating the proceeds to those in need. Women are able to use the smallest space in their yards for agriculture. PROUD TO BE ONE OF THOSE WOMEN!😀😀”