Farmers pushed to the brink amid driest summer on record

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As the level of one of the Eastern Cape’s largest supply dams, the Kouga Dam, sinks to unprecedented lows, the outlook for farmers in the Gamtoos Valley is becoming increasingly dire. This aerial image of the dam was taken in late January this year.Photo:PETRUS VERMAAK
As the level of one of the Eastern Cape’s largest supply dams, the Kouga Dam, sinks to unprecedented lows, the outlook for farmers in the Gamtoos Valley is becoming increasingly dire. This aerial image of the dam was taken in late January this year.Photo:PETRUS VERMAAK

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“Some farmers are helping their neighbours with water. Some are spending a fortune bringing in water in tankers just to keep their orchards alive. As you drive through the valley, you can see the trees are dry. The fruit size will be affected, which means there will be an abundance of smaller fruit this season,” said Meyer.

A fellow farmer in the valley, Khaya Katoo, said he had had to drill bore-holes to supplement his water supply from the dam.

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