Sandra Berning of Springvale Farm near Rosetta in KwaZulu-Natal was announced as the winner of the prestigious MPO Nedbank Stewardship Award at the MPO gala dinner on Wednesday, 9 October. The event was held during the AgriExpo Livestock on Sandringham, near Stellenbosch.
The MPO Nedbank Stewardship Award, supported by the Worldwide Fund for Nature, recognises dairy farmers who are excellent stewards of their product, the people and animals on the farm, and the environment, whilst farming profitably. The competition was stiff, but Berning walked off with the accolade in the end.
The judges found that Berning’s cow and milking management, in particular inter-calving period and cow longevity, was top notch. With virtually no calf mortalities, and all the environmental stewardship boxes ticked, she sets a high standard.
James Keen of Merns Farm near Mooi River, also in KwaZulu-Natal, was the runner up with excellent biosecurity, training and well-being of staff, and driving an initiative to limit water usage on his and neighboring farms.
The other two finalists were Rohan Herselman of Lancewood Farm near Hoekville in the Western Cape and Gavin Beaumond of Riverside, Dalvreuch, and Leeway Farms near Cookhouse in the Eastern Cape. The judges commented on excellent biosecurity measures on both farms and were impressed by the personal knowledge and hands-on management of the two finalists.
Berning will be spoiled with a stewardship tour to New Zealand to the value of R40 000 sponsored by Nedbank and Keen received R20 000 from Nedbank to invest in improvements on-farm.
From left: James Kean, Sandra Berning, Gavin Beaumont, and Rohan Herselman
From left: Dr Chris van Dijk, Sandra Berning, and Dr Ivan Meyer.
Published on Thu, 10th Oct 2019 - 14:00