Winning ram competition shocks female farmer

She reckons winning sheep is in better quality than others

Nokwanda Booi won the best ram farmer award in the Mbhashe Local Municipality.
Nokwanda Booi won the best ram farmer award in the Mbhashe Local Municipality.

Sheep farmer Nokwanda Booi, 49, never expected to win the best ram farmer award in the Mbhashe local municipality Ram Competition.

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,” said the resident of Zundwane village in Dutywa, 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, said: “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 said her ram 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 in this municipality,” said Janda.

The annual competition is hosted in October.

Farmers who would like to participate in the competition can get information from their local DRDAR extension officers.

Alternatively, they can visit or call the DRDAR’s head office on 0800 203 025.

• This article first appeared in GCIS Vuk'uzenzele

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