As a young farmer, Keneilwe Raphesu quickly learnt that her job was not only to raise livestock. Not a day goes by where she doesn’t have to wear a number of hats: from running the business, to assisting animals at birth.
Based in Vanderbijlpark in Gauteng, the 24-year-old Raphesu works alongside her father on their farm, Mogalemone. She started pulling her weight on a full-time basis in 2018, and eventually took over as farm director in May last year.
Raphesu says, “[Farming] teaches you how to be patient. How to be persistent. It teaches you a lot of things. You learn, you get to network, and you get to grow and develop as an individual in the farming sector. Farming for me is not only about business. It’s a passion.”
Nourishing your animals
And yes, when the North West University graduate became a farmer, she became everything. Like any good farmer, she has to fulfill a number of different roles.
“You become your own vet. You get to know about different diseases, sicknesses, different types of feeding, etc.”
As a livestock farmer, it is particularly important for Raphesu to know how to nourish her animals. This is why she has come to rely on Voermol products. Her favourite product, she reveals, has got to be the Molasses Meal.
This not only makes any feed or lick more palatable, but it is also high in B vitamins and trace minerals.
Raphesu has also discovered that it the Molasses Meal is ideal for feeding sick animals as it stimulates their appetites, besides also being a partial substitute for grain.
“I use it [Voermol Molasses Meal] as an energy supplement during winter.”
“I mix it with the yellow maize that I plant for feeding and Smutsfinger, which is the type of grass that I also plant for my cattle. It is the best as an energy supplement during winter when there’s minimum energy within the [grass]. Mollases Meal is definitely the best for me.”
Rapeshu also loves Voermol’s Phosphate Blocks. Added to licks and feeds, the blocks act as an excellent mineral supplement.
Cattle, dairy cows, replacement heifers, ruminant game, and sheep can all benefit from this product. It is especially valuable for promoting reproduction and growth.
The Voermol products have made farming easier for Raphesu.
“Voermol has changed my life. It has mostly helped me with my weaners, my pregnant cows during winter.
“[It has helped prevent] weight loss, them not having enough energy to breastfeed or to produce. I’d definitely recommend it to everyone. It’s the best.”