The Farming for Nature Public Vote Award is now open to the public with five farm finalists from across the country.
The initiative aims to highlight the valuable work farmers do in promoting and nurturing nature on their land and this year the awards received a huge increase in nominations.
Five of this year’s Farming for Nature (FFN) Ambassadors are being featured in the FFN Public Vote Awards during September-October whereby the public are encouraged to watch a short series of farm videos and vote for their favourite farming story – these videos can be viewed on www.farmingfornature.ie. This year’s public vote Ambassadors are Brigid O’Connor (Co. Kerry), James Ham (Co. Westmeath), Mark Gillanders (Co. Monaghan), Mark Harold-Barry (Co. Tipperary) and Sean Condon (Co. Limerick). These farmers represent a cross-section of the new group of 15 Ambassadors and the aim of the public vote campaign is to raise awareness of the valuable work that so many farmers do to support nature on their land. The public have until midnight 28th October to vote for who they feel should win the overall Farming for Nature Public Vote Award.
The Awards co-ordinator Lucy Bowler said “We are delighted to have Farming for Nature Ambassadors this year from Monaghan to Waterford, Clare to Kildare, from organic to conventional, from beef to forestry, tillage to HNV farming, each with so much to share on how to farm alongside nature. We would really encourage the public to view their stories to get a flavour of what farming for nature is all about, and also to vote for their favourite ‘story’ – they can do so by simply visiting www.farmingfornature.ie and choosing the farming story that resonates most with them. I think every farmer in Ireland will be able to relate to at least one of these stories and learn a little something – we plan to organise Q&As with these farmers and educational walks on these farms in 2023.”
The five Ambassadors will be featured at the annual Burren Winterage Weekend (www.burrenwinterage.com) on October 29th where the winner of the public vote award will be announced. Ten additional ambassadors have been announced and will be profiled over the coming months, joining a network of 66 ambassadors from 2018-2021.
The Farming for Nature Awards are sponsored by Bord Bia and supported by a wide range of farming and conservation interests including the Dept of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, the National Parks and Wildlife Service and the National Rural Network.