Nominations open for Farm Family of the Year

23rd winner to be awarded at Alaska State Fair
Published: Jun. 6, 2022 at 5:42 PM AKDT
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PALMER, Alaska (KTUU) - It’s only the first week of June and while most Alaskans aren’t ready for the fall season, the Alaska Division of Agriculture is already thinking about the Alaska State Fair. The division is seeking nominations from the general public for Farm Family of the Year as the growing season embarks in earnest under the early summer sun.

Division of Agriculture Director David Schade said that farmers are an integral part of a community, and nominating them for recognition is one of the best ways to thank them for the work they do.

“The Farm Family of the Year is an acknowledgment of some really great work that a family has done in the community related to and around agriculture,” Schade said. “They are leaders of that community because they believe in the longevity of that community.”

The division partnered with the Alaska Farm Bureau and the Alaska State Fair to begin recognizing outstanding farmers across the state over 20 years ago. This year’s winner will mark the 23rd family to receive the accolade.

Alaska has over 1,000 farms spread all over the state, each producing agriculture unique to its area, and it’s not just traditional row crop farmers that are eligible for a nomination. Schade said apple orchards, birch tappers, cider makers, berry pickers, and even reindeer farms qualify.

“Those are the kinds of innovative things that is really cool that we’re seeing develop in Alaska,” Schade stated.

The winning family gets a free day at the Alaska State Fair and Schade said he expects Gov. Mike Dunleavy will present the award again this year. Nominations are due by July 1.

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