rain SA’s newest junior economist, Ms Ikageng
Maluleke, was born and bred in Hammanskraal, just
outside Pretoria. Her passion for agriculture began in
high school where she gained knowledge of it as one
of her subjects. She went on to study a BSc in Agricultural
Economics at the University of Pretoria and obtained an MSc in
Agricultural Economics, majoring in Agribusiness.
During her MSc tenure she worked as a lecturing assistant for
two years at the Department of Agricultural Economics, Rural
Development and Extension at the University of Pretoria. In
2015 she was appointed as a research assistant for the Land
Matrix Initiative, a global and independent land monitoring initia
tive. Her interests encompass a variety of topics, including large-
scale land acquisitions and investments, land conflicts, transpar
ency in land governance, rural development, food security and
nutrition, agribusiness and trade policy.
The highlight of her career was
spending a semester at Ghent
University on an exchange pro
gramme where she did a few
courses and travelled around
Europe. Her passion for agricul
ture and development is what
drives her in the desire to make a
difference in the agricultural sector.
She is excited about work
ing in the grain industry
(she started working at
Grain SA in May) and
can’t wait to learn and
share her knowledge.
In her spare time
she enjoys reading,
doing community ser
vice and travelling.
Your grain storage solution.
Top quality turnkey projects
Tel: 012 332 1469
JD le Roux, Hoopstad
human resources officer, Grain SA
joined Grain SA
The key role played by the Department of Agriculture and
Agrarian Reform (DRDAR) is to:
Fund the mechanisation support made available to Grain SA
Farmer Development for the farmers.
Contribute to the stipend received by the graduates who are
appointed as interns with Grain SA.
The key role of Grain SA Farmer Development is to:
Conduct overall supervision and monitoring of interns
through Grain SA’s development managers in the province.
Enable interns by assigning them to accompany experienced
mentors in conducting their daily tasks.
Give specific tasks to and monitor and coach interns.
Enable mentors to continue carrying out their duties with
one or two interns assigned to them.
Submit reports to the provincial co-ordinator for assessment
Together we are making a difference
We are pleased to report that the DRDAR and Grain SA Farmer
Development Programme have already signed a five-year Mem
orandum of Understanding (MOU) which commenced in the
2017/2018 season – so we are already about to embark on year
two of this inspiring project.
Involvement of youth in agriculture
We have had such positive feedback from the project so far
that both partners have been convinced that through this joint
approach we could unlock job creation, commercialise rural
farmers quicker and ensure engaged youth in the agricultural
sector. We are convinced that for the agricultural sector to grow
and thrive we need to involve the youth of the country. Too often
this is easier said than done.
The average farmer in South Africa is 65+ years old. The average
age of farmers involved in the current Jobs Fund Project – a part
nership between ourselves and the Jobs Fund, making a huge
impact on small farmer development – is 50+ years.
There is seemingly very little interest from the youth. We be
lieve that a lack of experience and practical skills development
are contributory factors. Too often our young agricultural gradu
ates don’t have the relevant experience to farm or apply for a
job in extension services. They lack the practical knowledge to
start farming and lack confidence to chase after ideal jobs in
We believe this programme, although currently only operating
on a very small scale, has great potential to alleviate these issues
and could become a significant part of future farmer develop
ment if it were to spread its net ever wider across the provinces.
#TogetherWeMakeADifference. We are not shy to say we are
very excited to take part in increasing the number of youth in
the agricultural sector.