The 32-year-old Alexander Gibson from Ceres in the Witzenberg Valley was named the Agri Western Cape Santam Agriculture Young Farmer of the Year during a glamorous event in Paarl on Wednesday evening, 19 May. He will represent the Western Cape at the national Agri SA Toyota SA Young Farmer of the Year competition later this year.
Alexander, who obtained a B.Agric degree from the University of Stellenbosch, has been farming on Doornkraal Agri for the past 11 years with 300 ha of apples and 110 ha of pears. He was one of five participants who competed for the title of best young farmer in the Western Cape for 2021. “I believe if you are sitting here tonight as a participant in the Western Cape, in the South African environment and demographics of agriculture, then you have already won anyway,” he said during his announcement as the winner.
PF Theron, chairperson of the Agri Western Cape Young Farmer Committee, said that the panel of judges had a very difficult task again this year to select a winner from phenomenal participants. “Every year the competition shows us that the future of agriculture is in good hands, but it extends beyond just food security. The contribution that the young farmers make in their communities and the value they add is what makes our young farmers an asset to the country,” he says.