Engen Botswana, a major fuels and lubricants supplier in Botswana, with 24% market share, has put its weight behind a government drive to boost subsistence farming with a unique competition in which four individuals can each win a tractor and plough.
Called the Engen Farmer’s Dream Win-a-Tractor promotion, the competition was launched last week in Gaborone and Francistown.
Bobby Tlhabiwe, retail manager of Engen Botswana, says the Massey Ferguson 440 Xtra tractors will assist emerging farmers of sorghum and maize (Botswana’s staple foods), as well as beans and peanuts.
The Botswana government has been donating and subsidising small tracts of land (5 to 11 hectares) since 2009, in addition to providing tractors to encourage small-scale production of crops, for greater self-sufficiency of families.
If successful at a large scale, this could help stave off the threat to food security and reduce the country’s high food import bill.
It will also reduce consumption of domestic produce and enhance foreign exchange earnings from exports.
“There is even potential for augmenting the earning potential of families, which can put up tractors for hire when not in use,” says Tlhabiwe.
He says the office came up with the idea as a socially relevant initiative that would differentiate Engen in the market and highlight its profile as the country’s leading provider of diesel and gasoline fuels, lubricants and convenience services.
In addition to a retail network of 42 service stations, Engen also markets commercial fuels and lubricants in the manufacturing, transport and construction industries.
“With innovative products, solutions and services, and extensive retail and commercial supply networks, Engen is the go-to provider of farmers, from subsistence level up to large commercial concerns,” says Tlhabiwe.