Today we’re introducing you to Elnora du Toit—one of the Overberg region’s leading female farmers. Elnora has farmed with her father for over 10 years. Together, they run a mixed farming enterprise which consists of livestock and grain. We took a moment to chat to Elnora about her farming journey.
Elnora, thank you for taking the time to chat to us today. Please tell us a little bit more about your agribusiness.
I have been privileged to farm with my father in the beautiful Overberg region for 10 years. We run a mixed farming business, which consists of livestock and grain sections. The livestock section consists mainly of Dohne Merino sheep and a few Angus beef cattle that utilise the underutilised land. A crop rotation system is applied to the grain section between wheat, barley, oats, canola and lucerne.
Please share a bit of information as to how you became involved in farming.
My brother and I were privileged to grow up on the farm and to be part of the farm. We played on the tractors and ran around barefoot in the kraal. That is how my love for agriculture developed. Over time, it has continued to play a bigger and bigger role in my life.
What do you love the most about farming?
I find it wonderful to be able to spend time outside in nature and to be able to work with crops and animals. Every year is a new challenge and I soon learned that you need to be able to adapt and think on your feet—this year’s planting season is another good example of this. What could be nicer than a lambing season to remind you of nature’s wonders! Farming keeps you humble and makes you realise daily how dependent you are on your Heavenly Father.
As a child, did you dream of becoming involved in agriculture? Or did you have a different career path in mind?
I was privileged to know exactly what I wanted to do for the rest of my life before starting school. It made it easy for me to make the correct subject choice, as well as which courses I wanted to study at Stellenbosch University (BSc Animal Science with agronomy) to get one step closer to my dream. I am very grateful for the support of my parents in my choice and for the opportunity to attend university to pursue farming and live out my passion.
What do you enjoy doing when you are not hard at work?
On weekends I enjoy spending time with my family and dogs on the farm. I also like jogging and being active and really enjoy travelling.
Who is your biggest motivation/inspiration?
My father is my inspiration. He is the one who cultivated my love for agriculture and also taught me how to maintain a good balance between hard work and family time. Now that I have my own daughter, she motivates me to farm sustainably by managing and preserving the land lent to us to the best of my ability for the next generation.
Do you have any words of encouragement for young women who hope to become involved in agriculture one day?
If agriculture is in your blood, do not let anything stop you from pursuing your passion! Be willing to work hard and make sacrifices, but also be assured that through faith and trust you will reap the rewards with great joy.