Wed10172018

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Farming Mentors
Farming Mentors

Farming Mentors (4)

Should you have the capabilities and/or qualifications to do so, you may list yourself on our site as a farming mentor to teach and possibly assist up coming farmers of all races to farm professionally. Alternatively, you may list other farmers who may be qualified to take up this opportunity or they would be welcomed to contact our office for further information regarding this matter.

Definition of a farming mentor; is the type of person who has been involved in the farming and agricultural indusrty for many years and has a wealth of hands on experience of the business and who would be prepared to offer advice and to possibly teach and assist new as well as young farmers the art of the agricultural business.

Agri Africa is prepared to publish all contact details of the farmers who would be willing to share their knowledge, advice, hints and tips via e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Get Mentoring in Farming is a FARMINGPORTAL initiative to recruit and train 300 volunteer business mentors from the Farming Sector and to match them with 300 small farming related businesses, like yours, who are looking for mentoring support.

The Future of Farming Review highlighted the importance of business and management skills and the role mentoring takes in developing theses skills along with the potential for a matching service to help bring together new entrants with existing farmers.

Do you own or run a farming business and are looking to:

  • Improving your core business?
  • Diversify your existing business?
  • Making your business more resilient?
  • Grow or expand your business?
  • Reduce costs and improve performance?
  • Using technology to improve the way you do things?
  • Plan for the future?

Then why not find out how you can benefit from connecting with a volunteer mentor who has the knowledge and experience to help.

Don’t miss out. We have mentors who have volunteered at least an hour of their time every month for the next 12 months to provide you with mentoring support. Mentor training has now been completed and all trained mentors have been registered with Get Mentoring in Farming. When you’ve registered as a mentee the matching process can begin.

Step 1: Register

First of all, we’ll need a few details from you to create your profile. This will help us understand your requirements and allow us to match you with a suitable enterprise mentor when the project matching stage begins.

Step 2: Get Matched

Our mentor matching system will match you to a suitable mentor based on your profile information. At this stage our Mentor Manager will get in touch to make sure you’re happy to proceed with your assigned mentor.

Step 3: Get Mentored

If you’re happy to proceed you can either exchange contact information or communicate through our online messaging system and start working with your mentor. You can also access resources here to help you in your mentoring relationship.

Hundreds of experienced business people are receiving free mentor training from Get Mentoring in Farming,  In exchange they have agreed to volunteer as a business mentor for at least one hour a month.

Sent us mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to get you name on the list

Agriportal/Farmingportal Mentor program for Africa and it's people

Have you thought about how you can use your own experience and expertise in the farming industry to help other business owners in your sector?

The Future of Farming  highlighted the importance of business and management skills and the role mentoring takes in developing theses skills along with the potential for a matching service to help bring together new entrants with existing farmers.

Get Mentoring in Farming is a Farmingportal initiative to recruit and train 300 volunteer business mentors from the Farming Sector and to match them with small farming related businesses who are looking for mentoring support.

Be part of a growing team of volunteers from the farming sector who are coming forward to mentor other small business owners through the Get Mentoring in Farming initiative. Free training is available to help you develop the skills required to be an effective enterprise mentor and you will then be matched to a business needing your help. Training will be made available through locally run workshops and/or online and you will be provided with additional tools and resources to help you in your role as an enterprise mentor.

Do you have the knowledge and experience to help a farming business in one or more of the following business areas:

  • Improving their core business?
  • Business growth?
  • Diversifying their business?
  • Making their business more resilient?
  • Reducing costs and improving performance?
  • Using technology to improve the way they do things?
  • Supporting new entrants into the farming industry?
  • Succession planning?

Don’t miss out. If you think you have the necessary skills and experience to become a mentor in the farming sector, and are happy to volunteer an 3 hours of your time every month for the next 12 months, you can sign up today and start making a difference.

Step 1: Register

First of all, we’ll need a few details from you to create your mentor profile. This will help us understand your skills and abilities prior to undertaking your training and will also allow us to match you with a suitable business to mentor.

Step 2: Complete Your Free Mentor Training

Access your free mentor training by either attending a workshop or accessing our online learning content. Once finished you’ll have demonstrated that you understand the skills required to be an effective mentor.

Step 3: Get Matched

Our mentor matching system will match you to a suitable mentee based on your profile information. At this stage our Mentor Manager will get in touch to make sure you’re happy to proceed with your assigned mentee.

Step 4: Get Mentoring

If you’re happy to proceed you can either exchange contact information or communicate through our online messaging system and start working with your mentee. You can also access resources here to help you in your mentoring relationship.

Please sent us mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you want to become a Mentor in Agri in Africa and South Africa  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Farm worker Anthony Maseko (56) was born on Athole farm – as were his parents. Now, for the first time in his life, he lives in a brick house with electricity. And – also for the first time in his life – he does not live in fear of losing his job or being evicted.

It is not the only brick house being built in the agri-village on Athole farm, a 5 600 hectare spread of vegetable crops 10km outside the one-street Mpumalanga dorpie of Amsterdam.

Slowly but surely, the 60-odd farm workers and their families who live here are replacing their old mud houses with bricks and mortar homes. This is thanks to one farmer’s bold decision to set aside 10% of his land for labourers to use for farming.

Colin Forbes, who is also a physician, is mentoring workers in all aspects of farm management to help turn them into commercial farmers. This is often with help from the agricultural experts Forbes calls in.

The Athole farmers in training work on Forbes’ land on certain days and on their own for the remaining time.

Maseko, a tractor driver, is delighted with the material changes this arrangement has brought to his life.

“My children are very happy, particularly with having a TV. Now I think I will be able to pay for my daughter to study nursing next year, as I’ve been able to save money,” says the father of six.

Since the handover in 2011, Forbes’ workers have each earned about R8 000 in profits at the end of each harvest. This has been a welcome boost in a sector where the minimum wage is R2 400 a month.

Athole farm has passed down through generations of the Forbes family since the then Republic of Transvaal offered it to Forbes’ great-grandfather as payment for his work as a guide on a railway-construction project in the 1850s.

Forbes says he realised his continued success depended on his workers’ success. He hopes government will one day pay for the 10% of land that he has set aside. In the meantime, he continues to provide collateral for loans and initially pays for the seeds, fertilizer, pesticides and diesel his workers need. They repay him from their profits.

Forbes believes that the initiative should stand as a blueprint for land reform and that farmers should be compelled to transfer a portion of their land and pass on commercial farming skills to workers to help reverse the country’s skewed land-ownership legacy.

Obviously Forbes prefers this to having his land expropriated or being forced to give half of his land to workers under the so-called 50-50 system proposed by Gugile Nkwinti, the minister of rural development and land reform, in June last year.

“It’s way over the top, but giving nothing is way too little.

“Farmers can provide free mentoring to their workers because they have the credentials to do so. But someone holding a stick and saying a farmer must give away 50% of his land will polarise people,” says Forbes.

“Unfortunately, socialism doesn’t work in farming … there has to be one guy who will feel the pain when something goes wrong on the farm, so that’s why I’m saying mentoring is important,” he adds.

Forbes also mentors neighbouring farmer Patrick Madonsela (35), who farms mealies and soya beans with a further 120 families on 40ha of communal land in Glen Eland.

Madonsela says he is better off under Forbes’ mentorship than with the Mpumalanga agriculture department’s Masibuyele Emasimini (let’s go back to the fields) project, which is meant to assist emerging black farmers.

“The problem is that government only wants to put food in our mouths. They come here to plough and sow and then leave without teaching us anything. All we want is to learn how to farm,” he explains

SOUTH Africa HAS some of the best commercial farmers in the world, and while farms have grown in size over the past years, the number of commercial farmers has fallen drastically. Afgri executives said this week at the launch of an initiative to develop emerging farmers.

Chris Venter, CEO of the listed agriculture group, said on Tuesday the number of commercial farmers had decreased from about 66,000 15 years ago to about 28,000. He emphasised the importance of growing these numbers, saying this was one of the company’s focus areas.

Afgri unveiled a project aimed at developing emerging farmers over the next five years.

The initiative would be run in conjunction with Vastfontein Community Transformation, the Land Bank, and other commercial agricultural role-players.

The initiative would be run by a stand-alone company, Harvest Time Investments. Goosen Lombard, GM of Harvest Time, said the main objective was to support farmers to be sustainable, viable and independent. Training for selected farmers would take place at a farm adjacent to Vastfontein Community Transformation’s offices, about 30km from Pretoria. The training would be mentor-based, with 10 farmers allocated to a mentor. Mr Lombard said the initiative was not about "chasing numbers", or trying to please the government with scorecards. Rather, the focus was to make a difference in the lives of emerging farmers. Five mentors would be in place by the end of the month.

Mr Venter said the aim of the initiative was to produce sustainable farmers who would still be farming in 20 years’ time. The sponsorship cost would be about R60,000 per farmer per year.

The programme stretches over five years and would include training and development of technical skills, financial management, maintenance, personal development, literacy and business ethics. The initial focus would be on grain farming and livestock management, but would expand to other crops as the programme matured. To be selected, farmers must have a passion for farming, and their land must be close enough to the mentors’ so they can assist them conveniently. Beneficiaries must have access to at least 150ha of land, and farming equipment.

Zolile Duze, GM for the Grain Farmer Development Association, pledged his support for the project. Johan Grobler, MD of Vastfontein Community Transformation, said the organisation was already training micro-farmers to grow vegetables to feed their families on the training farm.

The centre has also established a primary school for 301 children, and will be building a high school that will be situated right opposite the training farm to encourage young people to take up farming as a career.