Table of Contents


Find the details of provincial farmer unions in the “Organised agriculture” chapter. For a list of provincial extension officers, see the “Emerging farmer support” chapter.


1. Eastern Cape

The Eastern Cape is the second largest province (after the Northern Cape). With plentiful grassland and (usually) good rainfalls, the Eastern Cape hosts the largest percentage of the country’s livestock – 38% of its goats, 12% of its sheep and 24% of its cattle (DAFF, 2017). It has 15% of the country’s milk producers (MPO, 2016). Its hens produce the highest number of eggs, 31% (SAPA, 2015). After Limpopo and the Northern Cape, this province hosts the most number of game farms (WRSA, 2012).

The broken surface of the land precludes large scale agronomy, yet a wide variety of crops are cultivated. These include:

  • Maize, lucerne, dry beans, sunflower, chicory, sugar beet, olives, hemp, flax, tea and sugar cane
  • Cabbage, tomatoes, onion, spinach and carrots pumpkins, watermelons and potatoes
  • Pineapples, peaches, oranges, lemons, apricots, guava, bananas and avocado

The shoreline lends itself to fishing. Squid forms the basis of the province’s fishing industry. There is some recreational and commercial fishing for line fish, the collection of marine resources, and access to line-catches of hake.

Potential agribusiness opportunities are fruit processing, maize milling, meat processing, juice/milk processing, tanneries and taxidermy.

The district municipalities

District/Metropolitan Municipality


Alfred Nzo


Buffalo City

Chris Hani

Joe Gqabi


Nelson Mandela Bay

OR Tambo

Sarah Baartman


Provincial Department of Agriculture

Department of Rural Development and Agrarian Reform

  • Tel: 040 602 5000 Fax: 040 636 3462
  • Postal: Private Bag X0040, Bisho, 5605
  • Website:

Head of Department: Lumkile L. Ngada

  • Tel: 040 602 5013 Fax: 040 635 0604

The "About us" option on the website introduces the visitor to the management staff, while “Regions” menu option on the website provides contacts for this department across the Eastern Cape municipalities.

For more information on the province: