Botswana: Young Woman Finds Solace in Vegetables

Kanye — When COVID-19 wreaked havoc across the world early this year,many countries responded in various ways, one of which was to close some sectors of the economy.

Ms Malebogo Modise's liquor restaurant in Kanye was not spared. She had to close her main source of income and like many other people. However,such a drastic development gave birth to what she now sees as her future.

The 35-year old Kanye born woman said she started vegetable farming in 2017,but took a break last year due to financial constraints.

She had been producing in small quantities and her main speciality was the 3301 hybrid cabbage. However,the COVID-19 movement restrictions made her realize that there was more demand for vegetables locally, hence deciding to expand her production by venturing into other vegetables such as rape,spinach,beetroot as well as green and red peppers.

Her full-time involvement with the business even opened her eyes to other opportunities such as seedlings production for various vegetables.

Even though Ms Modise had already established her place in the market, she said she was not able to meet the demand optimally due to financial challenges.

"We use a borehole for watering our vegetables and this comes with costs.Again this side of the country sometimes records the lowest temperatues which are not suitable for the seedlings,hence the need for a proper structure with moderate temperatures,"she said.

Ms Modise, was however, grateful that paying rent was not her concern since she was using her friend's farm, situated just four kilometres from the Ramatlabama border post and a kilometre from the main road.The farm,trading as Mod Brands,employed six full time employees and two casual labourers.

"I have also started venturing into small stock and my dream is to benchmark as much as possible so that eventually i can penetrate the international market.One thing i am certain about is that venetables are always in demand hence i aspire to grow my production and add a variety of other things to my production,"she says.

Ms Modise believes that a lot could be achieved in the agricultural sector through mentoring,guidance and determination.She has urged young people to be committed and patient in order to achieve desired results.

Source : BOPA

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