Farmers are being honoured and a poetry contest is being organized in appreciation of the work they do and continue to do to provide British Columbians with farm fresh produce. The photo above was taken at the Sooke Fall Fair in 2012

BC Farmers’ Markets lauanch the Ode to the Farmer Contest

Farmer's Appreciation Week is set for September 8 to 15

The BC Association of Farmers’ Markets (BCAFM) invites British Columbians to show their appreciation for local farmers in the form of a poem – a haiku, a ballad, an ode or a limerick, the style is up to you. Novice and experienced writers alike are invited to submit their best agriculture-inspired poems to the second annual Ode To A Farmer Poetry Contest, in honour of Farmers Appreciation Week September 8-15, 2014.

The grand prize winner will receive a $150 gift certificate to the B.C. farmers’ market of their choice. To celebrate the diversity of B.C.’s agriculture, contest judges will select a grand prize winner, plus one winning poem in each region of BC: Cariboo Chilcotin Coast, Kootenay Rockies, Northern British Columbia, Thompson Okanagan, Vancouver, Coast & Mountains and Vancouver Island.

Winning regional authors will receive a $50 gift certificate to the B.C. farmers’ market of their choice. The contest is open to all British Columbia residents. Submissions will be accepted online or by mail until Sunday, September 7th at 11:59 p.m. For details see Farmers Appreciation Week – Poetry Contest.

“BC farmers are our best source for fresh, healthy, local food,” says Jon Bell, BCAFM President, “and the Poetry Contest is a means to express our gratitude for BC farmers and all the ways they contribute to our health, communities and economy.”

This is the 5th annual Farmers Appreciation Week, an annual event highlighting the important contribution that local food and farmers make to our lives. Farmers Appreciation Week will be celebrated at farmers’ markets across B.C. from September 8 – 15, 2014. For more information on how to participate, see the Farmers Appreciation Week website. (www.bcfarmersmarket.org/resources/subpage/farmers-appreciation-week).

Three accomplished BC writers will judge the contest. Tamara Leigh is a freelance agriculture journalist, President of the BC Farm Writers Association, and FarmHugger blogger based in the Cowichan Valley of Vancouver Island. Renée Sarojini Saklikar is author of the thecanadaproject. Her work appears in various literary journals, newspapers and anthologies, including Geist and Contemporary Verse 2: The Canadian Journal of Poetry and Critical Writing (CV2). Ronda Payne is an accomplished agricultural writer and reporter. She is a regular contributor to Country Life in BC and various other publications.

The BCAFM is a not-for-profit association that represents 125 farmers’ markets across the province and works to support, develop and promote farmers’ markets in all regions of BC. For more information on the BCAFM or to find a farmers’ market near you, visit www.bcfarmersmarket.org.

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