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Family Farmers Awards

Actu - Prix RFF carotte d'or

At the recent family farmers network annual meeting, Équiterre presented awards for the first time!

The Pioneer and Golden Carrot awards will now be given each year to recognize our family farmers.

Pioneer Award for initial intrepid farmers

The year 2015 marks two decades of Équiterre’s involvement in the organic basket scheme in Quebec, and we wanted to reward the initiative of farmers who have participated in the network from the outset—particularly those who helped create it. It was therefore a very emotional moment when the Cadet-Roussel farm in Mont-Saint-Grégoire, Montérégie, was presented with the Pioneer Award.

In 1995, Jean and Madeleine Roussel accepted Équiterre’s invitation to start a pilot organic basket project. Given the enthusiasm of both the subscribers and producers, Équiterre set up the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) network with six more farms the following year. In 2010, the Cadet-Roussel farm managed to secure its land by creating the first social farmland trust in Quebec. This ensured the farm’s succession—Anne Roussel (Jean and Madeleine’s daughter) and her partner, Arnaud Mayet, now run the vegetable farm that supplies 200 subscribers in summer and 150 in winter.

Golden Carrot for outstanding farmers

Équiterre gave a second award to farmers whose top-quality summer and winter baskets and commitment to supporting new family farmers set them apart. The 2015 Golden Carrot award went to Vallon des Sources in Ripon, Outaouais, to recognize Monique Laroche’s 15-year involvement in the network’s monitoring committee, and mark the launch last autumn of Michel Massuard’s book, Les Nouvelles du Vallon [Life in Vallon], a collection of brilliantly written essays about life on the farm and its beauty included in the weekly baskets. The couple also run a workshop each winter on starting an organic basket service, which is offered by Équiterre to farms that have recently joined the network. Équiterre would like to congratulate these two farms once again on their awards and particularly thank them for their commitment to the network and determination to promote organic farming in Quebec!