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The Agriculture Awards of Excellence Held in Woodstock

10 awards were handed out last night at the Oxford Auditorium to recognize local farmers accomplishments in the community.

WOODSTOCK - It was a packed house last night at the Oxford Auditorium to celebrate the accomplishments of local farmers in the community over the past year for the Agricultural Awards of Excellence. The biggest award handed was the newest inductee into the 2015 Agriculture Hall of Fame and the honour went to Jim Magee.  "I'm awed and overwhelmed!  I had no idea this was going to happen, there are some pretty prestigious people in the Agricultural Hall of Fame in Oxford, I can't believe I ended up as one of them." 

9 other awards were distributed that included The Local Food Champion Award given to Woodstock District Development Services, The Technology Award presented to Dortman Bros. Barn Equipment, The Sustainability Award presented to Vollmershausen Farms, The Spirit of Agriculture Award presented to The Norwich Optimist Club, The Family Farm Award presented to Larenwood Farms, The Youth in Agriculture Award and Bursary was awarded to Kayla Veldman with the award going to Luke Ward.  

The winner of the Large Agribusiness Award was given to Ingersoll's Home Hardware Building Centre and owner of the facility, Dave Eisen, was just honoured to be included.  "It means that the work that we do is working on the right path, and that our customers recognize that the value of what are providing and the services that we offer." Eisen is grateful for the public's support over the years which led them to be in the running for this award.  "Thank you, it is very humbling and it represents a very big honour to me and our staff that we would be recognized in this way from our customer base." 

John and Meghan Snyder were all smiles when they walked away with the Innovation Award for their Pumpkin Patch and Fear Farm they host every fall at their farm. Co-owner of the farm Meghan Snyder, is energized for another great season after they accepted their hardware.  "We spend a lot of time planning and building for our season so to be recognized like this it just puts an extra bounce in our step.  It keeps us focused and lets us know that some of the things we are doing people are really paying attention too, and that's great for us."  Snyder is thankful for this award because it does make a difference for someone with a small business.  "It think tonight takes a lot of work, a lot of volunteers, a lot of sponsors as it does make a difference for farms, and certainly for us in a small family business to be recognized it really does mean a lot."

The Agricultural awards also brought to light global issues such as the world will need 70% more food by the year 2050.

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