Project Participant: Jaco van Wyk, Nieuwoudtville Northern Cape
1. Tell us about yourself. Where do you farm, your family and your interests?
Jaco van Wyk, 6th generation farmer on the farm Papkuilsfontein, in Nieuwoudtville NC. We are mainly a sheep farm (Dohne Meriono’s) with small sections of Rooibos and Olives. We plant oats and barley as supplementary feed when the weather allows. Later on we added a tourism section to the farm that was focused on the flowering season. Our family has always had the protection of the environment in mind with our farming practices, there has always been consideration for conservation and the future.
2. In once paragraph - what is your farming philosophy?
Look after your land and it will look after you. With each new generation on the farm we strive to better the farm making our farming practices more sustainable.
3.Tell us about one of your farming challenges and how you solved it.
Farming in the traditional sense has become more challenging over the past years, with the recent drought that lasted almost 7 years it became clear that these traditional approaches had to be changed to become more sustainable. By diversifying Our farming activities we managed to spread out the risks posed by severe weather events.
⦁ Developing a management plan for the entire farm.
⦁ Lam camps to reduce pressure on the veld during lambing season.
⦁ Eco tourism
4. What is the most important SLM lesson that you have learned?
Farm with the future in mind. Diversify your income streams and partner up with people who can help, do not farm in isolation.