Doreen Mokgolo
2 minute read
16 Oct 2019
3:12 pm

Ekurhuleni metro eyes vacant farms in Springs to create jobs, food security

Doreen Mokgolo

The 56 farms are valued at R120 million, and the initiative will make them accessible to local smallholder and subsistence farmers.

The initiative is aimed at increasing the metro's tax and revenue base, expanding food export and attracting new investments into the metro. Image: iStock

Seven farms from Springs have been identified to be part of the 56 farms of the Ekurhuleni farm project to help improve food security in the metro, reports African Reporter.

The 56 farms are valued at R120 million and will be accessible to local smallholder and subsistence farmers.

ALSO READ: North West fights poverty through food security programme

In a tender document released by the metro, the seven farms are named, which include:

• A portion of the remainder of the vacant farm Vogelstruitsbuilt located in Ward 88 on agricultural land.

• The remainder of portion 139 on the farm Reitfontein 128-IR in Springs located in Ward 74 on vacant agricultural land.

• Portion one of the remainder of the farm Vogelstruisbult in Ward 76 on vacant agricultural land.

• The remainder of Vogelstruisbult in portion seven on vacant agricultural land.

• The holding 114 Weldedacht Agricultural Holdings in Ward 75 on vacant public open space.

• Portion three of the remainder of the farm Vogelstruisbult in Ward 88 on vacant agricultural land.

• A portion of the remainder of the farm Vogelstruisbult in portion four located in Ward 111 on vacant agricultural land.

The initiative is aimed at increasing the metro’s tax and revenue base, expanding food export and attracting new investments into the metro.

It would also enhance the quality of livelihoods and increase the number of job opportunities in the region.

In a statement released by metro spokesperson Nhlanhla Cebekhulu, it explains that the programme will generate about R200 million in revenue for the metro through medium-term leases, in addition to other economic benefits.

“The City’s agriculture development and support programme, of which the rapid land release is part of, covers five key elements that will transform and grow the agriculture and agro-processing sector in Ekurhuleni.

“Farmers will be assisted with access to council-owned land, technical support, skills development, access to funding and access to markets and off-take agreements,” he explains.

The metro is in the process of finalising economic partnership agreements with private sector companies, government agencies, development financial institutions, industry bodies, farmers’ associations, research institutions and training organisations.

“About R14 million has already been budgeted in the current financial year for services of researchers and economists who will provide support to the programme,” said Cebekhulu.

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