ADA- Makhathini Irrigation Scheme
The Agribusiness Development Agency (ADA) was amalgamated together with Mjindi Farming Pty (LTD) in 2020/21 Financial year to re-configure the operations and the focus to bring about efficiency and sustainability where the mandate and responsibilities of managing Makhathini Irrigation Scheme were incorporated to the ADA.
The background to the Makhathini Irrigation Scheme is that it was established in the late 1970’s and its location is in the Jozini Local Municipality under uMkhanyakude district of KwaZulu-Natal Province. The size of the scheme is approximately 4500 hectares under irrigation and it services over 300 farmers and 10 primary cooperatives.
The ADA continues with facilitating agricultural development in the areas serviced by the Makhathini Irrigation Scheme with its focus in field crops, vegetables, and fruits. The Makhathini area has a high agricultural potential that needs to be exploited in order to benefit the local community thereby enhancing the economy of the province and the country as whole.
The entity continues to support farmers through the provision of technical agricultural support, water supply and infrastructural maintenance. Without the commitment and the dedication of the staff and the farmers, the area will suffer dilapidated infrastructure, particularly the canal, the underground pipes, and outdate technology at pump stations which will undermine the realization of high yields and production, resulting in the farming operations being continually affected by the shortages of water at critical times. There is therefore a great need to attend to the infrastructure to realize the untapped potential of the area.
The realization of the economic benefits of Makhathini requires that all the stakeholders (government departments, traditional leadership, landowners, farmers, private investors and local government) share a coordinated and common vision of the organization to be an internationally recognized thriving farmer-driven and socially relevant entity driving sustainable and green agricultural production.