Clifford Mthimkulu

Few things are more satisfying for a farmer than when his son (or daughter!) returns to the family farm to carry on a legacy of hard work and success. It was no different when Clifford Mthimkulu joined dad Koos at the family’s mixed-farming operation in Senekal in the Free State in 2008. It’s a tough farming area: Your cashflow depends on maintaining a fine balance between crops and livestock.

The recent drought tested the Mthimkulus’ technical skills to the extreme. However, having survived the worst drought in a hundred years made handing over the farm that much more special for Koos, the first Mthimkulu in his family to be able to do so.

Palesa Moahlodi

You don’t have to start big to end up super successful. Ask Palesa Moahlodi, an impressive gogo what made do with what she had when she started farming full-time in 2010 with broiler chickens and vegetables on her and her husband’s small plot in Bloemfontein. From there she never looked back, and today Palesa and her husband, Challa, an agriculturalist and soil scientist, own a 1300ha sweetveld farm outside Boshof in the Free State. Here in the heart of South Africa’s cattle country they manage a 120 Brangus and Bonsmara herd so expertly, their efforts have caught the eye of top South African cattle producer the Sernick Group. But het efforts don’t stop there – today Palesa has also added a 75-sow unit piggery to her business! Her stunning farming efforts have seen her win multiple awards, among them the Agricultural Research Council’s Emerging Beef Farmer of the Year in 2018.

Cocky Mokoka

South Africans love the Brazilians’ soccer brilliance. And, as it turns out, we love their farming, too! When Cocky Mokoka read about how Brazilian farmers had transformed their businesses by no longer ploughing or working their soil, he knew what he had to do.

Today, Mother Nature is the best farmworker Cocky has. In exchange for having stopped to fight her with chemicals and poison, Mother Nature has rewarded Cocky with soil that is becoming ever more fertile. This has allowed Cocky to cut costs and increase his profits across his farm – from his maize and soya crops to his cattle.

Experience this shepherd of the soil’s amazing journey with Mother Nature on 8 October on Mzansi Wethu, channel 163 on DStv.

Duncan Moalosi Serapelwane

A trip halfway across the globe and the teachings of two renowned entrepreneurs set Duncan Moalosi Serapelwane on a path back to farming – one he vowed as a child he’d never walk. Today this former teacher is a Bonsmara stud farmer and has found meaning in making a name for himself as an elite breeder of these iconic red South African cattle.

Jimmy and Lerato Botha

Fast and intensive – that’s what it’s like to grow herbs in tunnels. Almost every day you’re harvesting, selling but also planting, just to keep ahead of your customer’s demand for daily fresh herbs. To keep all the moving parts of such a fast-paced business running smoothly, one needs a well-oiled team, and they don’t come much better that Jimmy Botha and his daughter Lerato. This dynamic father-and-daughter team are more than just successful business partners, they’re also good friends. They enjoy each other’s company and love hiking together in the Magaliesberg right on their farm’s doorstep. And when they look back on their success, it’s always with a great sense of gratitude to that handful of greengrocers in Jozi, who cared enough to buy their herbs when no-one else wanted to.

Episode Three with Cocky Mokok


Tune in on Thursdays @ 18:30 onMzansi Wethu (DStv channel 163).

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African Farming November 2020: Issue 1

African Farming tells the
success stories of the country’s
new generation of commercial
black farmers.

The programme is
broadcast every Thursday at
18:30, with repeats on
Sundays at 11:00.