Choose the right partner – African Farming

Dineo Mokgoshi, a successful commercial farmer, is not afraid to expand. She not only dreams big, she makes those dreams come true. Lindiwe Sithole, host of African Farming Season 2, visits Segometsi Bakgoshi Agricultural Cooperative, Mokgoshi’s successful mixed-farming operation, to see how she does things.

Mokgoshi is ready to invest more heavily in mechanisation. If done correctly, this can improve production efficiency and sometimes even improve the quality of products produced on the farm. 

Cobus du Toit, John Deere Export Sales Manager, enlightens Sithole with his expert opinion in mechanisation during the panel discussion. Sithole mentions that Mokhoshi will embark on an elaborate mechanisation journey and is considering buying her own machinery. “With many farmers seeing the value in mechanisation, should she follow suit?” she asks Du Toit. 

Du Toit says he would recommend to Mokgoshi, especially because she manages a mixed-farming enterprise, to make sure firstly that she partners with the right supplier. “I believe she wants someone who can help her carry the worries that come with such a project.”

According to him, mechanisation is a leg of the business that is expensive and a lot of planning should go into choosing the correct equipment that will elevate the farming business to the next level.

“Bigger is not always better – it is about finding a practical solution to your everyday challenges. What works for your neighbour might not work for you.” 

When choosing a partner to help you to expand, he says, it is important to make sure they have a reliable after-sales service. “In farming timing is everything and you should choose a partner that will deliver service on stand-by during crunch time.” Du Toit concludes that mechanisation is a big step.

“Make sure you take hands with a reputable partner who understands the full spectrum of your business, the seasons, the crop – a partner who has the ability to keep your equipment running, should there be a problem during crucial times, and a partner who provides training for the operators. That way, you will gain the full benefit of your investment.” 

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