Dr Thulasizwe Mkhabela
The core emphasis of Agribusiness Development Agency is on project implementation and management. ADA plays in a space where value chain development is key for the transformation of agriculture to agribusiness, create an enabling environment and provide a platform for emerging black commercial farmers with a vision of developing a vibrant agribusiness sector in the Province.
ADA has developed new models to enable it to deliver on its mandate of supporting emerging black commercial farmers in the Province. One such model is "The Whole", which seeks to put in place interventions that address all the problems and challenges faced with the farmers that we plan to assist.
The Whole model first identifies what the project will need in order to be viable and sustainable, and then works on a period of three to five year cycle to intervene at all possible levels to ensure the success of the project. We hope that after this period, the project should be able to stand on its own and be commercially viable without our assistance.
Another model that we have developed is called "The Agri-Hub Approach". This model works on a premise of identifying certain commodities or products which are suitable for production in a particular geographical area and then create a hub or a one stop shop for that product, where producers, input suppliers, customers etc. can gather to trade.
The Agri-Hub approach will reduce costs for farmers such as transport cost where farmers would not have to travel long distances to get inputs or sell their products. The identified product can also be processed in that hub into a value-added product that can be marketed at a higher price. The long term approach of this model is to have farmers as part-owners of Agri-Hub centres.