Dear Friend of Farmland,
We wanted to share with you a story from the Chair of our Board of Directors, Bernard, about why he is passionate about farmland protection in Ontario. We hope you will find his words as inspiring as we did.
I have been surrounded by agriculture throughout my life, and I have spent the last five years serving as the Chair of Ontario Farmland Trust’s Board of Directors. It is my experience in the agricultural field, witnessing farmland loss, that makes me so passionate about the Ontario Farmland Trust’s mission to preserve Ontario’s agricultural land. I hope that by reading this, you are also inspired to take action to help protect Ontario’s farmland forever.
I spent my teenage years helping on my parents’ farm, and during this time I grew to love the land and all that it had to offer. Their farm has an abundance of natural habitat that provides ecological benefits to the growing communities around it, in addition to the food that it produces. My experiences on this farm helped to teach me the true value of farmland, and I am grateful that, in addition to my own farm, I still manage and work on this farm today. The connection to the land that was fostered in my youth is strong, and it is because of this connection to the land that I have made it my personal mission to help protect Ontario’s farmland, forever.
It is also because of this connection that I believe that Ontario’s farmland, some of the best farmland in Canada, is also one of the most valuable resources we have today. Farmland provides us with access to fresh, local food, something we cannot live without, and yet we continue to lose it at a rapid pace. So, I ask you:
At some points this year, we have witnessed bare grocery shelves. Although not the result of farmland loss, it is a reminder as to what could happen in the future should Ontario lose the land we need to feed ourselves. I believe that right now it is critical to take action against farmland loss in order for this not to become a more common occurrence in the future.
We must protect Ontario’s farmland so that future generations, including my grandchildren, are able to enjoy the local food we love.
Farmers work very hard to produce food for their community, but they can only do so much on their own when it comes to the preservation of farmland. This year, there have been more inquiries from farmers interested in protecting their farm properties than ever before. Ontario Farmland Trust’s work has made a tangible difference for farmland protection in the past, and I am certain that with your help, we will be able to continue making a difference in the future.
With your help, we can build a future where Ontario’s best farmland is valued and permanently protected through sound policy, partnerships, and proactive community engagement.
Help make a difference for Ontario’s agriculture now and see the difference it will make forever.
Bernard Pope, Chair of OFT Board of Directors
If you would like to support the Ontario Farmland Trust today, click here.
To read about our latest, and biggest ever, farmland protection project, click here.