Original Research

Challenges affecting Mzongwana cattle farmers to commercialise livestock production in Eastern Cape, from a local economic development perspective

Mthetheleli Baqwa, Elana Swanepoel, Marius Venter
Africa’s Public Service Delivery & Performance Review | Vol 10, No 1 | a576 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/apsdpr.v10i1.576 | © 2022 Mthetheleli Baqwa, Elana Swanepoel, Marius Venter | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 June 2021 | Published: 21 September 2022

About the author(s)

Mthetheleli Baqwa, Centre for Local Economic Development, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Elana Swanepoel, Centre for Local Economic Development, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa
Marius Venter, Centre for Local Economic Development, College of Business and Economics, University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa


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Abstract

Background: Rural cattle farmers in Mzongwana, Matatiele, Eastern Cape, face a scarcity of resources preventing them from commercial farming and contributing to local economic development (LED) and eradicating unemployment.

Aim: This study compares resource constraints associated with livestock farming contained in the Matatiele Local Municipality’s LED strategy with those identified by the cattle farmers in Mzongwana villages, linked to the agricultural economic theory of scarcity of resources.

Setting: The Matatiele area has an estimated unemployment rate of 39%. This article focuses on LED interventions to commercialise livestock farming practices in Mzongwana villages located in the Matatiele Local Municipality, in the Alfred Nzo District Municipality in the Eastern Cape province, South Africa.

Methods: A quantitative survey was conducted using a researcher-completed structured questionnaire with 34 of the 65 cattle farmers from Mzongwana.

Results: The results revealed that major constraints affecting Mzongwana livestock farmers include stock theft, a dearth of bulls for breeding, inadequate water infrastructure and limited equipment to perform various cattle functions, such as scaling, loading, separating, clamping and sorting of cattle.

Conclusion: The LED strategy of the local municipality should be revised to provide training and skills capacity building related to cattle breeding and to address these major constraints affecting the commercialisation of livestock farming in Mzongwana. It is recommended that the Matatiele Local Municipality assist in the combating of stock theft, provide training in artificial insemination, ensure water availability by building dams and drilling boreholes, and arrange for financial support for cattle farmers to purchase cattle equipment.


Keywords

livestock farming; local economic development; commercialise livestock production; Mzongwana; municipality

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