An inside look at Meatco's two Top Producers for 2016

24 Mar 2017

Esegiel Nguvauva recently walked away with the title of Communal Producer of the Year.

Esegiel Nguvauva

Hailing from the Ovitoto area in the Omatako constituency, Nguvauva scooped up the prestigious award for 2016 in a highly contested category.

The weekend farmer’s journey with Meatco is an exceptional one. Having produced for other abattoirs and not being content with the benefits, Nguvauva conducted research and then began to produce for Meatco not too long ago.

“Meatco gives me a competitive price for my livestock in comparison to other players in the industry. Also, Meatco provides extraordinary incentives for farmers by engaging and motivating us in many different ways,” Nguvauva says.

According to him, being a weekend farmer means you need to make time whenever you can to go to the farm and assist where possible to achieve your goals.

“I’m very fortunate to have a wife (Ursula) who supports me in everything I do. Our children are also very supportive and helpful with the farming,” says Nguvauva.

Winning the award was wonderful and is something he can use as a yardstick to measure the hard work he put into farming.

“The award certainly gives me the willpower to put more into my farming and to produce better,” he says.

Adding to the communal producer award, Nguvauva also won the Top Regional Producer award (slaughter communal) and the Top Five Producer award.

“Thank you Meatco! The awards show Meatco’s commitment to encourage meat producers to reach greater heights by producing better quality,” Nguvauva says.

Along with the communal producer award, comes a bull chosen by Esegiel himself. The bull is seen as a means to improve his herd quality to produce an even better quality product.

Dirk Uys and his wife Hannetjie Uys

Dirk Matthysen Uys was announced as Meatco’s Producer of the Year for 2016 thanks to his dedication and hard work towards delivering quality animals to Meatco.

Despite being a weekend farmer, Uys has a reliable team that ensures the farm runs according to plan.

Uys and his family work on Farm Dalmuta near Steinhausen in the Omaheke Region, affectionately known as “Cattle Country”.

Despite producing the high quality animals he does, 2016 was a drought year. He says the hardest part of the drought was that he had to cull almost 40% of his breeding cows.

“The chances of a part-time farmer like myself being awarded the title ahead of respected producers in the industry like so many of my fellow nominees, is an honour since we all know how tough and challenging the farming environment is,” Uys says.

Having a partner like Meatco to provide a marketing platform, allows farmers to do what they do best, he says.

According to Uys, Meatco provides a stable marketing environment while the producers farm in an unstable environment due to aspects like the weather, and through it all Meatco has the farmers’ interests at heart.

“I have produced for Meatco from the beginning albeit on a much smaller scale,” he says.

Apart from producing for Meatco, the Uys family also owns Savannah Brahman Stud that was registered with the Namibian Brahman Breeders Society and the Namibian Stud Breeders Association in 1993.

Today the stud consists of about 300 registered animals, with some 180 cows and heifers in production. Savannah bulls and cows have become sought-after breeding stock that is recognised by both stud and commercial farmers as one of the leading Brahman seed-stock producers in the country.

Thanks to a consistent breeding philosophy and a strong focus on veld-adapted cattle over more than 20 years, the Savannah stud has developed into a recognisable brand popular amongst farmers understanding the value of farming with animals that are bred in harmony with the environment.

Like many modern farmers, Uys is a weekend farmer. However, the Producer of the Year will be retiring towards the end of 2017 and plans on becoming a full-time farmer then.

Apart from the evening’s top award, Uys also won the Top Regional Producer (commercial slaughter) award and was one of the Top Five Producers (slaughter commercial).