Western Cape Minister of Agriculture, Dr Ivan Meyer, has launched the 2023 Western Cape Prestige Agri-Worker Competition in Hermanus in the Overberg District.
The regional leg of the competition, which will be held across 16 regions within the Western Cape, kicks off in June 2023.
Participants will compete across 11 categories: general worker, driver, irrigation specialist, technical operator, animal production, administrative staff, social development, agri-processing, foreman, junior management and middle management.
Regional winners will be announced by the end of August and will proceed to participate in the provincial competition in September 2023.
Speaking at the launch, Minister Meyer said that the Prestige Agri-Awards Competition showcases the excellent work done in the agricultural sector in this province. It also acknowledges, celebrates and inspires pride in its workforce and encourages them to learn new skills.
Meyer said that agri-workers played a vital role in the economy of the Western Cape.
He remarked, “17% of all those currently employed in the Western Cape are employed in the agricultural sector”.
Emphasising Agri-workers’ importance, Dr Annelie Rabe, Executive Mayor of the Overstrand Municipality, said, “Without agri-workers, there is no agriculture.”
Pieter van Zyl, General Manager of Procurement at Shoprite, commented that Shoprite had sponsored the annual competition since 2012.
Van Zyl added: “Shoprite is proud to be associated with this competition. By doing so, we acknowledge the agri-worker’s critical role in ensuring that our customers have daily access to fresh fruit, vegetables, meat and dairy products.”
“The Agri-Worker Awards has become the leading social upliftment project of the Department,” said Western Cape Department of Agriculture’s Deputy Director General Darryl Jacobs.
“Since its inception, the competition has significantly impacted the workers and their families. On an individual level, agri-workers feel recognised and rewarded for contributing to agriculture, and the participants develop self-worth and broaden their knowledge. In addition, past participants are seen as role models and leaders on the farm and in their communities”, continued Jacobs.
Minister Meyer added: “Acknowledging our agri-workers inspires hope and instils a sense of worth.”
“It is important to invest in our agri-workers, who are a crucial part of this sector,” he concluded.
The winner and Western Cape Prestige Agri Worker of 2023 will be announced at a gala event on 4 November 2023.
For further details on how to enter, please contact Gertrude.Jacobs@westerncape.gov.za.
Spokesperson for Minister Ivan Meyer