Celebrating Canada’s Agriculture Day: A Toast to Our Farmers!

As we gear up to celebrate Canada’s Agriculture Day on February 13th, it’s time to shine a spotlight on the incredible individuals who work tirelessly to bring food to our tables. This annual event isn’t just about acknowledging the hard work of farmers; it’s a chance for all of us to deepen our understanding of where our food comes from and the vital role agriculture plays in our lives.

There are lots of ways to learn more about the farmers who grow our food and how they do the work they do. One way is to follow @nsfaMeetYourFarmer on social media and check out meetyourfarmer.ca. Meet Your Farmer is an initiative of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture that connects the public with the agriculture industry through events, social media, story-telling, and farmer profiles.  You can learn more about farmers who live and work on some of the wide range of types of farms found here including specialized or large-scale farms, mixed-use farms, and farms that grow ingredients that might be new to many Nova Scotians.

The high-quality food on our tables is the result of dedication and determination. Nova Scotia’s agriculture industry relies on the hard work of farmers, but also the hard work of researchers, seed producers, feed and equipment suppliers, processors, packing and shipping partners, and retail partners.

Canada’s Agriculture Day is more than just a date on the calendar; it’s a nationwide celebration of the hardworking people who bring us the food we love. It’s an opportunity to showcase all the amazing things happening in food and farming and to make connections with the people who produce it. Whether you’re attending in-person events, participating in virtual gatherings, or joining in on social media campaigns, there’s something for everyone to engage with.

Consumers are increasingly curious about agriculture, and Canada’s Agriculture Day provides the perfect platform to satisfy that curiosity. It’s a chance for all of us to join the conversation, learn more about where our food comes from, and appreciate the essential contributions of agriculture to our nation’s prosperity and well-being.

One fun way to participate in the celebration is by sharing a “Forks Up Selfie” while enjoying your favorite dish made with Canadian-grown products. Let’s spread the love for Canadian agriculture by tagging @nsfameetyourfarmer and showing our support for the hardworking individuals behind our food.

Celebrations like Canada’s Agriculture Day highlight the importance of agriculture in Canada but we celebrate all year long. How can you join in? Buying local products directly supports farmers in the province. You can also support them by following your local markets and farmers on social media, liking and sharing their posts, and tagging them when you use their products.

Canada’s Ag Day is inclusive and accessible to all. Whether you’re a farmer, a consumer, or simply someone who appreciates good food, there are countless ways to get involved. You can visit agday.ca for graphics and ideas, post your own photos or videos on social media, cook with Canadian products, say hello to a farmer online or in-person, and use the hashtag #CdnAgDay to join the conversation. And feel free to come up with your own creative ways to share your passion for agriculture and Canadian food!

Now, let’s delve into some industry statistics that highlight the importance of agriculture in Nova Scotia. Did you know that approximately 50,000 people are employed in the agri-food system in Nova Scotia alone? That’s a testament to the breadth and depth of the food industry in our province. Nova Scotia farms employ roughly 6,500 people, contributing significantly to the local economy.

And when it comes to supporting our farmers, every action makes a difference. Supply chains can be local or global, from farmers’ markets to grocery stores stocked with products from across the country. Supporting Nova Scotia’s farmers is not just about buying their products; it’s about engaging with their communities, sharing their stories, and advocating for sustainable agriculture. Whether it’s through CSA subscriptions, shopping at local markets, or simply spreading the word about our fantastic local products, each gesture helps sustain our agricultural community.

Climate change presents challenges for agriculture, with extreme weather events and shifting seasons impacting crop yields and animal health. Programs like the Environmental Farm Plan Program, delivered through the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture, help farmers identify ways to protect the environment and promote sustainable practices. Farmers are adapting by expanding their knowledge and implementing best management practices to mitigate these effects.

Healthy soil and clean water are vital resources on farms. Protecting agricultural land is crucial for maintaining food production and preserving natural habitats. Wetlands, riparian areas, and shelterbelts provide essential biodiversity and must be safeguarded.

As we celebrate Canada’s Agriculture Day, let’s raise our forks in gratitude to the hardworking farmers who feed our nation. Whether it’s sweet potatoes from the Annapolis Valley, honey from local beekeepers, or beef from our lush pastures, each bite is a testament to the dedication and passion of Nova Scotia’s agricultural community.

So, as we revel in the festivities of Canada’s Agriculture Day, let’s remember to support our farmers, cherish our local flavors, and celebrate the bounty of this land we call home. Happy Canada’s Agriculture Day.