Western Cape to honour top agriculture worker

Alan Winde and Pieter van Zyl of Freshmark: Shoprite Group.

MEC of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde, launched the 2016 Western Cape Prestige Agri Awards last week at Kromme Rhee, near Stellenbosch.

Mr Winde said the initiative, previously known as the Farmworker of the Year competition, honoured excellence in the province’s agriculture sector.

“The Western Cape is creating the most agriculture jobs in the country. In 2015, our agriculture sector added more than 80 000 jobs to the economy. Despite challenges, our agriculture sector is growing and this is due, in part, to our focus on the commodity approach, the Project Khulisa growth strategy as well as the efforts of employers and employees in this sector,” said Mr Winde.

This initiative is co-sponsored by the Western Cape Department of Agriculture and the Shoprite Group.

“This year, we have decided to rename the competition to the Western Cape Prestige Agri Awards, which better describes our approach to the competition. One of my missions in this portfolio is to restore dignity to agriculture and I believe we are achieving this through initiatives such as these awards. It is our privilege to be able to honour the men and women who take our agriculture sector forward, generating jobs for fellow residents, and growth in our economy,” added Mr Winde.

The first of 15 regional competitions is set to take place in the Witzenberg region at the end of July, and the overall winner in each region will then go through to the provincial competition in November. The overall winner receives a cash prize, Shoprite vouchers and an overseas trip.