Agra's winner, Heifers with Breeding Potential from the southern parts of the country, has urged fellow farmers in the country to keep their animals healthy by providing them with the necessary supplements.
Theofilus Nghilundua was speaking to Farmers Forum on the way forward, especially in these tough drought times. "I believe the prevailing drought has changed the thinking around farming; some people became sceptical, but I want to encourage farmers to stay hopeful," he stated. Nghilundua said there is a need to set up structures to harvest rainwater and look into crop production - even if it is on a small scale. "I know it is difficult due to the financial constraints we all face these days, but we need to keep every raindrop on the farm," said Nghilundua. The 39-year old co-owns a farm in the Maltahöhe district with his wife, Helena Nghilundua, and has been farming for the past 14 years with the primary focus on Bonsmara, Dorper sheep and goats. "To me, farming is a business; you need to have a proper plan in place, and goals and objectives. Most importantly, implement your plans. At the end of the day, you have to evaluate your achievement (outcome) versus your plan," Nghilundua explained.
As a farmer, he said, one needs to identify challenges by observing the many aspects of farming - whether it is the animals, grazing, infrastructure, and most importantly, the employees. He said quality is the main factor that sets his animals apart from the rest, and which led him to winning this year's Agra Awards. "There are a lot of farmers with quality cattle in the South, but on that particular day, we were one step ahead with quality," he exclaimed. Nghilundua said the time and energy one invests also contributes to production at the end of the day; thus, he urges farmers to dedicate their time and energy to production.