Local farming couple Kevin and Annamarie Klippenstein were honoured with a wine and cheese reception by Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers Program last Friday at the Branding Iron Steakhouse in Keremeos.
The Klippensteins were voted the organization’s 2011 B.C. Outstanding Young Farmers this year, and will be competing in the Canadian Outstanding Young Farmers’ National Event, which takes place from November 15 – 20 in Brandon, Manitoba.
“It’s a way for us to recognize couples in agriculture who are working hard, and encourage them to stay in the industry,” said Suzanne Cuthbert, National Hosting Committee Co-chair for Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers.
Seven other farming couples from across Canada will be competing in the November 15 event. In order to qualify, farmers must be between the ages of 19 – 39 years of age, and derive two thirds of their income from farming.
“We are trying to advance agriculture, and get youth interested in farming,” added assistant Al Timms, who also participated in Klippensteins event.
“The Klippensteins will have to compete against the best in the rest of the country,” he added, “But there are many benefits to the program, one being lifelong friendships and contacts that the competitors make while there.
We see this as a pat on the back for these young farmers – there just isn’t enough of that.”