Chicken Business Hatches Top Prize

SOUTH AFRICA - What began as a modest breeding programme with 200 birds three years ago has hatched into a successful business producing 80,000 chickens every six weeks.
calendar icon 29 February 2012
clock icon 3 minute read

Enterprising businesswoman Nthakoana Mojakhomo, the owner of Mojakhomo Broilers, which employs 15 permanent and 20 casual staff, has won the provincial Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award.

The Stilfontein-based project supplies chicken to mines around Klerksdorp, fast food outlets and major retail supermarkets like Pick n Pay and Spar.

As part of her prize, Ms Mojakhomo will receive agricultural infrastructure development worth R1.5m, in addition to R125,000.

The announcement was made at a function in Klerksdorp last Friday attended by Premier Thandi Modise.

Ms Mojakhomo told The New Age: "I was overwhelmed winning big in my maiden participation in the awards. At least my hard work has been recognised but this honour gives me energy to work harder to transform agriculture in the province."

"The money will be used to enhance security at the business, also intend refurbishing the floor of the houses (where the chickens are kept) to reduce mortality of the birds, thereby, minimising losses," Ms Mojakhomo said.

She said the business needed another house to accommodate an additional 20,000 chickens so that output could be expanded to 100,000 chickens.

"Providing the feed is a major challenge, I would like to have my own food lot because it costs nearly R900 000 to feed the birds every six weeks," she said.

The premier challenged women in agriculture to encourage more women to take up farming, urged those already in it to share their skills so that the province could realise its goals around tackling food security and unemployment.

"We believe in the great agricultural potential and resources in our province. It is therefore prudent for you as women to look at making agriculture our stronghold," she said. The provincial agriculture and rural development department will through its comprehensive agricultural support programme ensure that Mojakhomo Broilers gets much-needed infrastructure to expand its enterprise. Mojakhomo will lead a team of other winners to the national Female Entrepreneur of the Year Awards on 24 March in Kimberly. "People expect me to bring home the national trophy, all I can say is that I’m looking forward to the experience, and whatever outcome, I will be happy," she said.

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