WHAT IS THE BEST ADVICE YOU HAVE EVER BEEN GIVEN?
“When you plan for the future, don’t just plan for your children, plan for your grandchildren.” This I got from my grandmother.
IS THERE ANYTHING YOU WOULD HAVE DONE DIFFERENTLY IF YOU COULD?
I would have started with potatoes as soon as I got this farm. It would have saved me time and money.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT TO DATE?
Securing this farm with all its infrastructure and being able to turn it around from a loss-making citrus entity to a profitable farming business.
WHO HAS MADE THE MOST IMPORTANT CONTRIBUTION TO YOUR SUCCESS SO FAR?
Many people have contributed to my success, but the support from my family is what has kept me going.
WHAT KIND OF RELATIONSHIP DO YOU HAVE WITH YOUR NEIGHBOURS, AND DO THEY PLAY A ROLE IN YOUR BUSINESS AT ALL?
I have a great relationship with my neighbours: two of them are mentoring me, while another allows me to use his packhouse and helps me with marketing.
IF YOU HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO GIVE THE MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE SOME ADVICE, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY?
Land is the biggest issue for many developing farmers. The minister should support farmers who have proven they can use land effectively, so that they can grow beyond the emerging farmer stage to becoming true commercial farmers.
HOW IMPORTANT IS ORGANISED AGRICULTURE TO YOUR FARMING OPERATION?
I think organised agriculture is very important. I am a product of organised agriculture – from the National Emergent Red Meat Producers’ Organisation (Nerpo) to Potatoes South Africa.