How Wayne Mansfield went from fruit hawker to citrus farmer

Episode 9 of the 'Vir die liefde van die land' agricultural TV show introduces South Africa to this 34-year-old citrus farmer from Paarl in the Western Cape

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After working for years as a street hawker, Wayne Mansfield (34) finally made a shift from hawker to farmer and he has never looked back. Today he is an award-winning farmer cultivating citrus on his farm near Paarl in the Western Cape.

This is where the hosts of the agricultural TV show Vir die liefde van die land (For the love of the land) meet the inspiring agripreneur in this week’s episode.

Hosts Ivor Price, co-founder of Food For Mzansi, and Piet Potgieter, manager for developing agriculture at the VKB Group, celebrates South Africa’s unsung heroes of agriculture through this show. It airs on VIA, DStv channel 147 and is quite unlike any other agricultural programme you’ve seen before.

In the episode featuring Mansfield, he recalls doing everything with his family as a little boy. They instilled in him a love for agriculture, so much so that after matriculating from high school he decided to start his own business, selling grapes at the Cape Town fresh produce market.

Donald Mouton from Fairview. Photo: Wyrd Films.
Donald Mouton from Fairview. Photo: Wyrd Films

Years later, Mansfield started picking lemons for sale at Fairview Wine and Cheese in Paarl. There, Donald Mouton, manager of Fairview, offered him an opportunity that he never anticipated.

“One day he asked me if I was not interested in farming the lemons. I knew nothing about farming, absolutely nothing. I knew that a tree needs water, but that was about it.”

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He said yes, though, and has never looked back since. In the show he talks about the impact Mouton has had on his farming journey.

Mansfield’s work ethic and honesty celebrated

“Wayne has a passion for agriculture and he listens to consultants,” Mouton says in the episode.

Hilary Hill from VBK. Photo: Wyrd Films.
Hilary Hill from VKB. Photo: Wyrd Films

“Farming is a business where you work with money and I think Wayne has always understood that; he knows how to work with money,” he says.

Mouton adds that he has always been inspired by Mansfield’s work ethic and honesty.

Viewers of the show later hear Mansfield talk about how he never thought that he would one day be a farmer, exporting his first 31 000 tonnes of lemons and being recognised as an award-winning farmer.

He shares his journey from hawker to farmer, the farming challenge of not making money at first and what he still hopes to achieve in his agri future.

Legal talk with VKB

Hilary Hill, manager of legal services at VBK, features in this week’s episode and unpacks the group’s legal service offering to smaller-scale farmers.

“We are involved in three focus areas. The first one is where emerging farmers are part of VKB’s development program. In that relationship, we will draw up an agreement, so that each party involved is aware of their respective rights and obligations.”

He also shares their service offering for a legal agreement between a farmer and investor, as well as commercial and emerging farmers who partner to work together.

  • The episode featuring Mansfield airs Thursday, 3 December at 18:00 on VIA, DStv channel 147, with further repeats. Check the channel listings for details.

 

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