Tomorrow, 21 April 2022, the Western Cape Department of Agriculture joins the world in celebrating Creativity and Innovation Day.
The day encourages people to let go of their creativity and use new ideas to make the world a better place to live.
Innovation is one of the core values of the Western Cape Government.
Employees are encouraged to be creative and innovative in the workplace and explore unknown technologies that would improve service delivery processes.
Creativity and innovation are the key drivers behind the growth and overall success of the Department’s service delivery agenda and how we respond to the needs of our citizens.
This innovation resulted in the Western Cape Department of Agriculture’s Rural Safety Monitoring Dashboard shortlisted for the Public Service Innovation Awards earlier this year. This in-house developed tool monitors rural crime incidents and identifies hotspots within the agricultural landscape.
Another initiative, the Resource Efficiency Project, received the Gold Award in the category, Replication and Adaptation of Innovative Solutions at the 19th Public Sector Innovation Awards Ceremony, held in Johannesburg on 25 February 2022. Despite the steep Eskom tariff increases, this innovation has reduced the Department’s municipal water and electricity bills.
In 2021 the WCDoA also launched an e-commerce platform to enable Black-Owned Wine Brands to market their products throughout South Africa.
The e-commerce platform aims to boost sales from the participating businesses and mitigate the dependency of these enterprises on the export market to ensure sustainability and, therefore, enable successful land reform.
WCDoA’s Agri-Processing on Wheels Initiative is another first for South Africa. This innovative mobile agri-processing initiative extends the basket of agri-processing services to rural communities. It enables officials to develop the agri-processing capacity in the Western Cape by offering workshops to interested groups across the Western Cape.
Other examples of innovation within the Western Cape Department of Agriculture include:
- CapeFarmMapper provides access to various agricultural and natural resources spatial data sets.
- The Ostrich Slaughter Planner assists ostrich producers with recordkeeping and planning in digital format before receiving a permit to slaughter ostriches at the abattoirs. Therefore, an innovative “farm to abattoir” tool!
- The satellite-based Fruitlook enables fruit farmers to manage their water use to optimum levels.
- Digital pen technology also referred to as Smartpen, monitors and evaluates the quality of extension advice offered to smallholder farmers.
- Numerous drone technologies are opening up new opportunities for the Department and producers.
I have encouraged my departmental officials to continue the journey with innovation and creativity and embrace it as part of the culture journey announced by Premier Alan Winde during his state of the province address in February 2022 in Velddrif.
I also pay tribute to the incredible innovation by the agricultural stakeholders, farmers, producers and agri workers.
World-class technology and innovation is driving precision agriculture in the Western Cape. The use of technology smart research, production and monitoring methods, including drones, sensors, real-time data probes, and camera technology, is also critical to advance the agricultural sector and open new opportunities to attract and equip youth with the necessary skills to pursue careers in 4IR related businesses.
Spokesperson for Minister Ivan Meyer
Tel: 079 990 4231