Biggest west coast agriculture show ready to roll!

It is just two more weeks before the biggest and best agricultural show in B.C. opens its doors to the public. The 2014 edition of the PacAg Show is surpassing all past shows with over 250 displays and many outstanding seminars that provide all the latest information to farmers and others involved in agri-business. Access is easy, being on the grounds of the airport in Abbotsford, with lots of FREE parking space. Here is a run-down of PacAg Show components:

JANUARY 30, 31, FEBRUARY 1, 2014
TRADEX CENTRE – ABBOTSFORD AIRPORT

OYF WINNER

Lydia Ryall has been selected recipient of the 2014 Outstanding Young Farmer Award for the British Columbia/Yukon region and will receive her recognition at the BC Agriculture Council’s Gala on Wednesday, January 29th. She won over three other contestants, two of which were third generation farmers.

Lydia owns and operates a 10-acre Certified Organic mixed vegetable and pasture-based poultry operation on Westham Island in Delta. She sells the majority of her crops through five weekly summer farmers’ markets from her own farm stand and from a 90-member Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) box program. During winter months her produce is sold through two weekly farmers’ markets and a 50-member CSA as well as some wholesale accounts.

Ryall has a BSc in Agriculture from the University of Lethbridge in Alberta and a Diploma from Olds College. She sits on the Delta Agricultural Advisory Committee and the Lower Mainland Horticulture Improvement Association Board.

12th ANNUAL AGRI-FOOD INDUSTRY GALA

The 2014 annual BC Ag Council Gala will not have a guest speaker as in the past. Instead they are opening up the event to allow for more socializing among guests at the dinner. While the usual Outstanding Young Farmer award will be presented along with awards from the BCAC and the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC, a new award will also be presented by Agriculture in the Classroom to the Teacher of the Year. And the BC 4H organization will be honored on their 100th year of operation.

HORT GROWERS SHORT COURSE

A major concern for berry growers this past year was the weather and the Spotted Wing Drosophila (SWD) insect which overwintered well coming into 2013 and infested BC berry crops. The concerns and lessons learned from the worst SWD year ever are addressed Thursday, January 30th at 1:30 p.m. for strawberry and raspberry growers and on Saturday, February 1st at 9 a.m. for blueberry growers. Both sessions are in the TerraLink Room.

Berry growers will also be interested in the improved small tractor models being shown this year in the trade show area. They are specially built for operation in our local berry fields.

BC DAIRY EXPO

On Thursday, January 30th, Dr. Robert (Bob) Milligan, Professor Emeritus at Cornell University, will open proceedings at 10:05 a.m. focusing on his ProDairy program, which teaches leadership and management skills, principles and concepts. He will outline strategies for the dairy farmers’ workforce. Registration for this event is $10.00 which includes the noon luncheon and door prize draws.

AGRI-ENERGY FORUM

The ARDCorp sponsored Renewable Agri-energy and Waste Management Forum will inform farmers and food processors how to take advantage of readily available resources and diversify their income to more effectively manage their waste management and energy needs. A full day’s program has been prepared for presentation on Friday, January 31st, beginning at 9:30 a.m. and ending with a reception at 4:30 p.m.

NEW TO THE PACIFIC AG SHOW

A session for Small Farm owner-operators organized by Kwantlen Polytechnic University is to take place in the BMO room on Saturday, February 1st and  will highlight small scale farm management and business planning, covering products, production practices, technology and finance.

Also a special feature for children attending the show will be the Anderson family’s Petting Zoo.

Hours: 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. daily
Admission: General public $12.00
Seniors and 4H members – $10.00
Children under 14 – Free

For more information on the 2014 Pacific Agriculture Show contact JGS Events at (604) 291-1553 or visit http://www.agricultureshow.net to view the web site.

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