A fruit farmer from the Witzenberg Valley, Alexander Gibson, walked away with top honours at Agri Western Cape and Santam Agriculture’s Young Farmer of the Year awards last night.
Gibson joined Doornkraal Agri in Ceres in 2009 and together with his father, George, the agricultural enterprise plays a leading role in the development of the region’s fruit production capabilities. He farms apples and pears on 410 hectares.
In a moving acceptance speech at the Ashanti estate in Paarl, Gibson thanked his father for his mentorship, adding that the success of their latest venture depends on both their contributions.
Through strategic investments with a marketing agent, Gibson’s apples and pears are exported to markets across the globe.
PF Theron, chairperson of Agri Western Cape’s young farmer committee, commended Gibson for keeping abreast with the latest agricultural practices and technologies.
He says, “Alexander also focuses on the implementation of new technology. He likes to do everything right and believes the more responsibility someone accepts, the more proud they are of what they do.”
W. Cape’s top young participants
Other top participants in the Agri Western Cape Young Farmer of the Year awards were Jo-andra Cloete Greegory, a Joostenbergvlakte poultry producer, and Derec Giles, who farms with vegetable seeds, ostriches and sheep in Uniondale.
Also on the finalist list were Koue Bokkeveld fruit producer Floris Steenkamp and Kleinjan Teubes, who farms with dried grapes, wine grapes, vegetables and stone fruits in Vredendal.