Pieter Lamprecht of Crown Breeders was named Wildlife Rancher of the Year 2014 at Wildlife Ranching South Africa’s glittering annual award ceremony, held at Sun City on Saturday 14 March.
A clearly overwhelmed Lamprecht, recognised for his extensive experience in genetics and game breeding, as well as his far-reaching and inclusive industry vision, said he was tremendously honoured to receive the award and could not have done so without the efforts of his team. WRSA announced three further significant awards. Gus van Dyk of Tswalu received the award for Biodiversity and Social Responsibility 2014, while Zander Osmers of Zander Osmers Safaris was acknowledged as Green Economy winner for 2014. Riaan, Dawid and Kobus Crous of Die Crousbroers were collectively named Breeder of the Year 2014.
Lamprecht is a dynamic farmer that impressed the judges with his extremely impeccable recordkeeping; the high standards of his breeding programmes and shareholding in Crown Game Breeders; his successful foreign hunting business, Cruiser Safaris, which was the basis
for his whole business; the value he added to his business through the development and utilisation of an optimal value chain; as well as his involvement in the community and mentorships.
“At 39, Lamprecht is a great example of how you can start with very little and become a successful farmer,” said the judges. “It took him more than 20 years to build his business from the ground up. Through hard work he built everything with money he made from the industry itself.” Van Dyk manages a successful tourism and breeding enterprise; focuses on the sustainable utilisation and conservation of water, plants, animals and people; places strong emphasis on involvement in the community; is involved with the broader transformation and empowerment process; and actively supports skills development and training of farm staff and in the broader community.
Osmers emphasises sustainable utilisation of all the resources on his farm. He promotes conservation, and runs and markets his business within several sectors, namely breeding, hunting, meat supply, helicopter services and support with game capture and translocation. He plays a big role in the support network for rhino and community security.
Die Crousbroers focus strongly on breeding and are involved in research. They maintain excellent record-keeping and good herd and veld management, promote and strive towards improved breeding results, and provide the market with sought-after, high-quality animals. Dr Peter Oberem, president of Wildlife Ranching South Africa (WRSA), said the awards are important for this R20-billion industry, which makes such a huge contribution to biodiversity, food security and tourism, among other things. “It is vital to recognise the top performers as these are the people who are leading the way in our industry,” said Dr Oberem.