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Transforming the future with the KZN Goat Agribusiness Project

The secret to Radical Economic Transformation is … Goats! No kidding. A group of agricultural innovators in KwaZulu-Natal have seen the potential in goats to boost food security, stimulate small entrepreneurs and ultimately establish an export industry. Their first task, simply put, is to stop kids dying off through a community-based programme of vaccination and nutrition, and in that way boost production by up to 40%. The hundreds of thousands of goats that are now having to be imported from Namibia to meet demand, will be able to be sourced locally, changing lives across the province and wherever goats are used for meat or ceremonies.

The vision: The KZN Goat Agribusiness Project aims, within five years, to stitch together a value chain that will double indigenous goat production, develop 7000 women commercial farmers, create 620 youth jobs and 700 microbusinesses, and generate R100 million in extra value from the herds. The partners: The KZN Goat Agribusiness Project is a R70 million initiative that has already developed strong momentum in five districts in the province: Mzinyathi, Thukela, King Cetshwayo, Zululand and uMkhanyakude.

The partners in the project are Mdukatshani Rural Development Project, HPSA, the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform, the Department of Agriculture and already they are looking for ways of expanding its reach.

How does it work? The hubs for the project are individual homesteads where women are in charge of the goat herds, and also more than 100 dips in an area spanning from the Drakensberg berg to Mozambique border.  Each dip has a reach of about 300 farmers who are or will be part of the project, and so 30 000 farmers will be brought into the project directly or indirectly.  

Servicing the needs of these women farmers are 300 youth who have been trained as Community Animal Health Workers; some administering animal health, some organising winter feed and manufacturing protein/energy blocks, some processing hides for leather products. Altogether this will result in 700 microbusinesses across the countryside. To date, there are already almost 7 000 project members, and growing.

Objectives of GAP

  • Create small businesses among local youth to support farmers through a Community Animal Health Worker (CAHW) program
  • Commercialise local goat herds
  • Improve production in local homestead herds
  • Create and strengthen value chains around goats
  • Support and target academic research on issues experienced by farmers
  • Support basic animal health of chickens and cattle in rural areas
  • Build state capacity to take these successes forward

For more information about the project partners, click below on their logos to be taken to their websites