This week’s Farmer’s Inside Track video features poultry farmer Manyano Rasmeni. Rasmeni (36) decided to quit his corporate job working as a marketing executive in Johannesburg and returned to his hometown of Frankfort outside Bhisho in the Eastern Cape.
He joined his family’s farming business, a 100-hectare poultry, livestock, piggery and crop enterprise nine years ago. In the video Rasmeni details his journey from executive to thriving poultry farmer.
“My farming journey started in 2011 when I had just moved from Johannesburg back to the Eastern Cape. We started off with poultry, eventually branching off into piggery and cattle as well,” he explains.
Uprooting his entire Johannesburg life took time, patience and resilience. “It wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be, because I still had some withdrawal (symptoms). I had to kind of adjust because I had made the big move and it was a matter of life and death that I must make this work,” he adds.
His experience in marketing was a tool he used to his advantage to rebrand and rebuild the family’s farming enterprise called Rasmeni Farm.
“Marketing has been my biggest strength because a lot of farmers struggle to sell some of their produce. The ten plus years of me in marketing and being an entrepreneur allowed me to be able to connect easily with customers and to be able to sell off my produce.”
Rasmeni advises young aspiring farmers to never pursue projects by themselves. Farming is a community, he believes.
“You can never be a successful farmer alone. You will need other farmers. You will need other people to come and work with you on your enterprise. You might not be good at marketing, but you might be good at operations, so you might need someone to help you expand,” he says.
For as long as people need food, there will always be ample opportunity to thrive in the agricultural sector, he says.
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