Sheep farmer Nokwanda Booi (49) never expected to win the best ram farmer award in the Mbhashe Local Municipality Ram Competion.
Booi says she feeds her award-winning sheep a protein energy mineral supplement, which is mixed with grated maize.
“My ram is of a better quality than the other sheep in the village because of its special diet,” says the resident of Zundwane Village in Dutywa in the Eastern Cape.
Booi, who was the only female entrant, won a Dohne Merino ram, animal feed and sheep medication.
She entered after officials from the Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform (DRDAR) visited the region and shared news about the competition with the local farmers.
Booi, who started farming in 2016, says: “It was my first time entering the competition, and I didn’t expect to walk away with the trophy among men.”
The annual competition was started by local sheep farmers who wanted to encourage the purchasing of high-quality rams for breeding.
She says her ram, bought in March 2020, has already produced 10 lambs, which are improving the quality of her stock and they are also used to generate income through wool shearing and milk production.
Booi added that being involved in sheep farming has changed her life and she is now able to provide for her family.
Mbhashe Municipality Mayor, Samkelo Janda, said it was important that local farmers take part in the rural economy.
“We want agricultural activities to take centre stage in our economic development as this municipality,” said Mayor Janda.
The annual competition is hosted every year in October.
Farmers who would like to participate in the competition can get information from their local DRDAR extension officers.
Alternatively, they can visit www.drdar.gov.za or call the DRDAR’s head office on 0800 203 025.