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A little over a year ago, Zhadra Tulkina together with her husband decided to leave the hustle and bustle of the city and start their own farming near Karaganda. Having collected the available equipment, their own and borrowed funds, they began work on the creation of peasant farm. Thanks to the grant received in the contest "Build your own business", their farm gathers its first harvest this year, builds its own production base, creates new jobs and hopes to improve the quality of life in a small village of Zhartas, Karaganda region. Learn more about what has already been done in our material.
About the appearance of the farm
My husband used to work as a commercial director for the company Astra. It is a large agricultural enterprise in the region, a seed type. The company had some problems with shareholders, so he left. Then he and the partner started to do agronomy. He liked it. He decided to buy a land, an old equipment. He tried and realized it was a good business and is worth doing. He begun to appeal to local executive bodies to expand, as for the profitability of such a project you need as much land as possible, at least 100 hectares. The legislation allows for this.
At this time, a break was made in order for the land to rest. That's when I met him and we got married. Then my husband and I lived in Karaganda, worked in the city, I worked in the company Kcell. But we wanted to do something by our own. We had to do something, not just sit in the city. It's been a long decision to be taken, but we had the land and it was worth a try. We had 40 hectares of land in private ownership, some technique. We decided to start our own business and move from Karaganda to the village of Zhartas, Abay District, Karaganda region. The first 15 million for our project we borrowed from the agro-credit organization. We have acquired the original-necessary haymaking technique. Since there was hay, we decided that we need to build a farm and engage in livestock.
We started with a small farm. We saw the potential, and that there are young men who are ready to develop the project.
On the national economy
The people who work with us have entered the project with their own land. But they were frightened by the fact that they allegedly enter the agricultural production cooperative, so they are deprived of this land. We explained that they were only a shareholders, no one would take that land. We create one farm and work together on this land.
Now we are helping six peasant farms, cutting their hay, we press it, we export it. We have our own arrangement with each farm. Some part of is taken by the farm, some of the hay we get. The same thing would happen if the farms were our shareholders. That is the principle that works, but it was difficult to legally formalize. In the summer season, many local young guys worked with us, now someone has gone into the army, someone went somewhere else. They are willing to officially find a job in the farm in the future. Young people turn to work on the ground, the only thing is that we do not have much equipment so far, so we cannot work continuously. When there is a completely necessary amount of equipment, young children will receive a constant amount of work in our farm.
Good shots in the village are now in great demand. But they need to be given the possibility of normal, permanent, full-fledged work. Then the young people are ready to stay in the village.
About the first harvest
The funds often were not enough, so winning a grant in the contest "Build Your Own Business" gave us a strong push, added optimism. As the land was rested, the harvest should have been good. We planted the land as much as we had the means. Total we planted 24 hectares of potatoes, now we are preparing for the harvest campaign. We hope that the harvest will be good. This will be our first harvest.
We had to prepare the land for planting the harvest. We didn't have the necessary equipment that time, so we began to rent it. We bought the seeds of potatoes and planted. And then there was the irrigation season, and we also did not have the rain machine. We purchased a rain flushing machine for 2 million tenge. Therefore, most of the grant was spent on purchasing the most necessary equipment, seeds and renting the equipment from the owners.
Simultaneously, the haymaking season began, our machine operators worked both there and there. This year they also started construction of our base, poured the foundation, next year we will continue its construction.
About participating in the contest "Build Your Own Business"
I was in Karaganda before the New Year. I was scrolling my Instagram page and learned about the contest "Build your own business". I read everything. I invited my husband to take part in the contest. Since we thought about the fact that it's time to take a loan for the spring field works. We made the video and decided to take part in the contest. We were hoping we could make it. Then we got to the next stage of the contest and prepared a business plan.
When I was defending my project, it seems to me that I was heard in the sense that it is very difficult without equipment. The rent is very expensive, and this affects the cost of production. For example, potatoes with their technique would cost a very inexpensive price. If potatoes are taken from the field at 35 tenge, then on the market they sell at 200-250 tenge per kilogram. All this equity goes to the intermediary.
About the first results and plans for the future
We raised 24 hectares of potatoes and chamfered hay. We've already managed to sell half the hay. Now we are looking for a technique for digging potatoes. The rent is basically the same as the cost of a second-hand processor. We are looking for people to harvest potatoes; we're going to need about 20 people. Also we will save the seeds for the next season. And we hope to successfully sell the harvest. All the profits we plan to spend on the acquisition of new equipment.
We are very grateful to the "Saby" Foundation for the grant. It was a big push for us. I don't know how we'd do this without grant. Our task now is to multiply these funds. We want to create a full-fledged agricultural enterprise in the region, with its own base, equipment, land, and to start large cattle. We need to interest local people in the work on the land.