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Farmer's Appreciation Night brings producers together

About 300 producers gathered at the Farmer's Appreciation Night, hosted by LARA, Feb. 7.

GLENDON - The 11th annual Farmer’s Appreciation Night saw about 300 local producers gather as the Lakeland Agricultural Research Association (LARA) thanked them for their hard work and continued support.

LARA treated its guests with a warm supper and entertainment on Feb. 7, as well as recognizing some of its board members. The organization is an applied agricultural research association that serves the M.D. of Bonnyville, County of St. Paul, Smoky Lake County and Lac La Biche County. It is a member of the Agricultural Research and Extension Council of Alberta.

“Because we are a non-profit, we are run by producers and this event is a thank-you for our producers,” Alyssa Krawchuk, LARA’s manager said. “The support that we get from our local producers continues to drive use toward our research.”

The night also included entertainment by mentalist Louis Pezzani, performing mind magic.

Ulf Herde, who attended Friday’s supper and entertainment, has been farming in the Ardmore area for almost 30 years.

“I’ve come to every one of these for the last 11 years because it’s great visiting time and socializing, and it’s a good day to highlight agriculture,” Herde said.

“When I started, I used to be like everyone else, make my own hay and feed it out to the cattle all winter,” he said. “But now I’ve gone to a more grazing program . . . grazing corn for the winter.”

Also joining a crowd of laughing producers at the RCMP Hall in Glendon was the reeve of the M.D. of Bonnyville and farmer, Greg Sawchuk.

He agreed with Herde’s sentiments on why the event is important. “It’s a good chance for these folks to socialize, we don’t get a lot of chances to meet each other unless we meet each other on the road,” Sawchuk said.

A concern many farmers shared this past harvest season was the delay in getting crops off the field due to wet weather and early snow. According to Krawchuk, this is the fourth consecutive year where bad weather has delayed harvest.

According to Charlie Leskiw, a farmer representative on the LARA board from the County of Smoky Lake, “As a result of the above normal precipitation, the protein content of the wheat was somewhat lower than average, which eventually becomes a factor in the grading of the crops and what we receive in value.”

In November, un-harvested fields and poor crop quality caused the County of St. Paul to declare an agricultural disaster.



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