Fall for Canadian Agriculture – Doing what’s right is what matters

With the fall harvest in full swing, it always amazes me just how much we have available from the land for our tables. This bounty is all a result of those dedicated families who raise and grow our food. They understand that doing what’s right is what matters most.

At the Canadian Beef Industry Conference held in Calgary mid-August, there was tribute paid to progressive Canadian beef farmers and ranchers who demonstrate by example their commitment to responsible agricultural practices: The Environmental Stewardship Award (TESA).

TESA is a peer-driven program designed to foster and promote stewardship practices. Awarding beef farmers and ranchers who demonstrate leadership as responsible stewards of the land has been a mentoring program of the Canadian Cattleman’s Association since 1996 under the TESA program — long before sustainability and climate change caught the attention of the mainstream. Provincial recipients are eligible for the national TESA.

This year’s national recipient is David and Vicki Francis and their son Brett from Prince Edward Island. Along with their five children, the Francis family have been farming for 36 years on their seventh generation farm in Lady Fane. Potato and beef cattle are the main focus for the farm along with crops like barley, oats, corn and hay. Soil conservation is a major concern for the Francis family as the rolling hills, sandy soil and more common extreme weather events can have devastating effects on their farmland with soil erosion that results in washouts. As such, the Francis family have invested heavily into soil conservation practices aimed at reducing water flow speeds over the land. Click Here for more detail on conservation practices of the Francis family.

TESA recipients do not take the award for granted – it is a humbling thing to be honoured by your peers. The awards ceremony is always a very emotional event, with heartfelt thanks given to their families and communities. To learn more about TESA just CLICK!

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