Lindsay Humphreys is a determined woman who has taken up the reins as general manager at Mohair South Africa (MSA) from 1 March. Lindsay has been acting as general manager from 1 February, when former managing director, Deon Saayman, took up a new position in the wool industry.
Stockfarm recently visited MSA’s office in Port Elizabeth to learn more about Lindsay’s vision of reaffirming South Africa’s angora goat industry, in collaboration with the international textile community, as the global leader in mohair fibre.
A determined spirit
Having spent the previous eight years in the marketing division of MSA, Lindsay has been a key member of the management team, implementing business strategies and monitoring the company’s performance. She has proven to be an invaluable asset with demonstrable strategic abilities, strong innovative thinking and natural communication skills.
Even in the briefest conversations about mohair, Lindsay leaves no doubt as to her passion for the industry. “I am constantly inspired by the love and respect our farmers have for these gentle animals. Since our encounters with animal rights activists last year, I feel a deep responsibility to change the unfair global perception of South African mohair farmers, and I am dedicated to showcasing the beautiful partnership between man and goat.”
A mission for success
A key element of Lindsay’s responsibilities involves engaging with various international organisations and stakeholders. The aim is to promote the use of South African mohair across the globe by showcasing the importance and value of sustainable angora farming.
Lindsay is currently focusing specifically on the successful implementation of the new international responsible mohair standard (RMS), which is currently being developed by the widely respected international non-profit organisation, Textile Exchange, which acts independently from MSA on behalf of the global textile value chain. “It involves extensive international travel to ensure that the process is understood and that trust is restored,” she says.
When addressing audiences or brand delegates from around the world, Lindsay openly shares her passion for an industry that has been following ethical and sustainable farming guidelines for a number of years.
She is on a mission for success since the industry was targeted by animal rights activists, and remarks: “The way in which the truth was distorted and the entire industry tarnished as unethical was blatant propaganda, unjust and entirely biased towards a different agenda. I feel that it is our (MSA’s) responsibility to overturn this fabrication and share the truth, while ensuring that land and animals are in fact farmed ethically and responsibly.
“Our strategic focus changed overnight, circumventing a natural evolution. Instead of marketing mohair for its unique properties, we now focus on the story of responsible farming practices and land management. This in itself was actually quite simple with no spin required: We share the true story of the symbiotic, mutually beneficial relationship that exists, and has to exist, between man and goat. Nothing more, nothing less.”
She added, “An angora goat is far more than a stock animal producing fibre for the international consumer market. This incredible fibre represents the intersection of a delicate balance between the farmer, his or her goat and the tough Karoo landscape, all co-existing and depending on one another to thrive and survive.” – Carin Venter, Stockfarm
For more information, contact Mohair South Africa on 041 581 1681 or visit www.mohair.co.za