April 13, 2016 – Andrew Campbell of Strathroy has been named the 2016 recipient of the Farm & Food Care Ontario Champion Award.
The award was presented at Farm & Food Care’s annual meeting on April 13 by Bruce Christie, a Farm & Food Care board member. Campbell was nominated for the award by the Middlesex Federation of Agriculture, with letters of support provided by Dairy Farmers of Ontario and writers from www.DinnerStartsHere.ca – a consumer-facing blog site populated by young Ontario farmers.
Middlesex Federation of Agriculture spokesperson Lucia Lilbourne describes Campbell as an eloquent individual who willingly takes every opportunity to engage consumers, and one who is very proactive in tackling challenges through a variety of channels. Justin Williams and Scott Snyder, farmers who write for Dinner Starts Here, says Campbell is “a true leader in the social media movement in Canadian agriculture.” They credit his hard work as the reason Dinner Starts Here is an effective consumer outreach initiative.
While active on a number of different media platforms, nominators cite Campbell’s #Farm365 initiative – a twitter campaign where he tweeted one photo a day from his farm – as a crowning achievement. The initiative, which lasted officially throughout 2015, was intended to give Canadians a look at dairy farming in Ontario; it garnered Campbell 17,500 Twitter followers, attracted international support and attention, and continues to be used by farmers and agricultural advocates in countries across the globe.
Campbell is also a dynamic speaker and volunteer, says Ralph Dietrich, chair of the board for Dairy Farmers of Ontario, which also participated in the successful program. Dietrich noted that Campbell has appeared on programs such as CTV and CBC News, CTV Canada AM, The Agenda with Steve Paikin and more. He and his #Farm365 initiative has also been the subject of many news articles, and he continues to act as a spokesperson for his industry in many formats.
Campbell is also an effective communications trainer and facilitator. According to the nominators, he is always willing to help others positively promote Canadian agriculture, whether through communications training, debate facilitation or volunteering his farm for events.
“Andrew is a true leader and an excellent representative for the next generation of farmers,” says Dietrich.The Champion Award has been presented annually, since 1999, to worthy agricultural advocates.
Farm & Food Care Ontario is a coalition of farmers, agriculture and food partners proactively working together to ensure public trust and confidence in food and farming. For more information visit www.farmfoodcareON.org