In a bold move to sustain the Western Cape’s agricultural sector, the province has launched the GreenAgri web-based portal.
Alan Winde, Minister of Economic Opportunities, officially launched the portal yesterday (9 September 2015) at the Backsberg Estate Cellars.
The initiative is a partnership between the Western Cape Department of Agriculture and GreenCape.
“The GreenAgri portal will be an interactive portal for farmers, researchers and the private sector. The latest environmentally-friendly farming practices will be showcased. It will also provide more information on the Western Cape Government’s green policies and the industry will have the opportunity to comment on government proposals on these policies.”
Minister Winde said many farmers were using innovation to pioneer environmentally practices.
“More and more agri-businesses are going green. We’ve launched the GreenAgri portal at Backsberg, which is one of the world’s first wine producers to launch a carbon neutral wine. These are the kinds of stories we need to promote.”
Minister Winde said the portal would provide support to emerging, urban and small-scale farmers.
“Farmers will be able to leave messages and we’ll be able to interact with them and address their concerns or questions. It’s compatible on PC, smartphone and tablet.
“We know that factors such as climate change pose a threat to food security globally. Through this portal, we are using technology to give farmers the information they need to farm sustainably.”
The portal will include the following categories:
Green action plans and policies: All departmental, national and provincial green policies and initiatives. This will allow all industry participants to identify the broad “green” action plans for the province;
Tips and tools: This section is farmer focused and includes:
- Useful tips on smart agriculture and adoption of principle and practices
- Online tools which are currently and freely available to assist with smart agriculture. This includes Fruitlook, the Climate Information Platform and the Cape Farm Mapper.
- Funding and incentives available to assist with smart agriculture;
- Events and training which users use as networking opportunities;
- FAQs on Smart Agriculture
Green projects and research: This tool will update users on the latest developments in green research as well as assist researchers in getting feedback on their research.
SmartAgri: The key status quo reports, comprehensive stakeholder information and resources of the Western Cape’s climate change response plan, SmartAgri project, will be available to users
Your input: Registered users will be able to pose questions and identify research gaps concerning smart agriculture;
Green contacts: Greencape will able to provide users with the relevant contact details