Michael Esmeraldo, Netafim South Africa’s sales manager for the northern regions of the country, was elected as president of the South African Irrigation Institute (SABI). He has been serving as vice-president of the organization since 2019 and before that served as chairman of the Mpumalanga branch.
“We wish Michael well in his two years in office as president of SABI,” commented Etienne Erasmus, MD of Netafim South Africa and past president of SABI. Netafim South Africa has been a company member of SABI since it opened its doors in 1992. The company is involved in the actions of the institute and various Netafim employees have served on the SABI council. Netafim believes that any and all role-players in the South African irrigation industry must be a member of SABI.
Netafim is in full support of SABI, as the company’s mission is in line with what SABI stands for. “The institute prioritizes value-add in the industry and wants to ensure that all actions taken are in line with the set norms and standards. Secondly, the institute’s ultimate mission is to save water through highly efficient irrigation.” Netafim can fully align itself with these values.
The next generation
At 30, Michael is the youngest ever president of SABI. “I want to encourage younger players in the irrigation industry to be actively involved in organized industry activities. I also want to make young people who are still considering their career options aware of the many amazing opportunities in the irrigation industry.
“Our greatest challenge and duty in the irrigation industry is to continuously improve the way we use water. The only way to ensure a sustainable future is to use water even more sparingly. Another important challenge the industry faces is to ensure that the next generation of irrigation experts are sufficiently trained and involved in the industry. By taking this on, we will ensure a sustainable future for the irrigation industry in the country and continue to help farmers use water optimally.”