The District Municipality’s response to high levels of poverty, malnutrition,joblessness has led to the initiation of projects that provide affordable basic foods to all households. One of such initiatives was the birth of vegetable production (dubbed Green Valleys) in 2003. The main focus of Green Valley’s is to stimulate massive production of vegetables by our farmers for local consumption which would later and incrementally get into trade deals with other regions in the country. However this is only feasible through provision of irrigation systems and production inputs to the aspiring farmers.
Objectives of Green Valleys
- To position the district to be the number one producer of food in the Eastern Cape
- To develop and consolidate vegetable production in the region so as to ensure food security
- Provide much needed income to participating communities
- Provide job opportunities thereby reducing high levels of unemployment in the region
- Address the alarming rate of poverty in the region and dependency by majority of population on food garnts/parcels
Local Municipalities covered in the last three years and distribution of sites
- Imveli Tyara 10,5 ha Yamampondo KSD Libode
- Mantusini Mantusini 21,8 ha KSD Port St Johns
- Buntingville – Buntingville 10 ha – NYANDENI Ngqeleni
- Silverton Farm – Masitembane 12,6ha – KSD Mthatha
- Ntsimbini Ntsimbini 14,3 ha KSD Mqanduli
- Konoma Agric Mpunzana 13,7 ha Venture KSD Mqanduli
- Mbokotwana Mbokotwana 8,2ha MHLONTLO Tsolo
- Shawbury Shawbury 13,7 ha MHLONTLO Youth(Qumbu)
- Ematolweni Mzimvubu 52 ha MHLONTLO Tabankulu
- Upper Culunca Upper Culunca 20 ha MHLONTLO (Qumbu)
- Ihem MHLONTLO Zingisa 8,1 ha (Mthatha)
More than 300 short-term jobs have been created by the projects during the installation of infrastructure and operations.
The project is focusing on five local Municipalities viz, KSD, Mhlontlo, Port St Johns, Nyandeni and Tabankulu.
Ntinga OR Tambo Development Agency enters into partnership with the selected projects for the period of at least three years. On the basis of this partnership, selected projects are assisted with the complete installation of irrigation systems so as to enhance their productivity. They are also provided with hundred percent (100%) finance for production inputs, at least for one (season).This will enable them to kickstart their businesses.
The focus of the programme in the financial year 2007/8 is consolidation of the already existing projects in terms of making them profitable and being fully fledged businesses. The thrust of the success of such a gigantic initiative rests on the building of strong institutional structure (in the form of cooperatives), in fact this will be focal point of the organization in relation to Green Valley’s this season.
Most of these projects will provided with hundred percent (100%) finance for production inputs, at least for one (season) but others will be graduated as they have shown potential to stand up on their own. Concerted efforts to train the farmers on basic business skills, management skills, cooperative farming will be fortified as it is through this that the objectives of the programme or strategic direction thereof will be achieved.
One other element that Ntinga Development Agency will put more effort on will be drawing up and implementation of production plans for these projects, not the unavailable, adhoc, and untenable production plans they are currently undertaking.