Laval, QC (Nov 27, 2023) Greg & Sarah Stamp from Stamp Seeds, of Enchant, AB and Brad & Travis Hopcott from Hopcott Farms, of Pitt Meadows, BC were chosen as National Winners from seven regional farmers at Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmer (OYF) Program’s national event held in Laval, QC November 22-26, 2023.
What began as a partnership with Greg’s parents, in 2006, has become three separate operations run by Greg and his brothers- Nathan & Matthew. The operations include Stamp Seeds (retail pedigreed seed), Stamp Farms (production of pedigreed seed for retail and contracts) and Flourish Farms (crop land). Pedigreed seed is produced on 7000 acres, of which 5000 acres is under irrigation and 2000 acres are dryland farmed. In the beginning custom work helped cash flow. Growing contract seed for others allowed Greg to expand the retail seed business and build a customer base. Although minimum till was being practiced on the farm, they created management zones and now use benchmark soil sampling to better manage their fertility. On-farm field days, newsletters and social media help to build awareness of the varieties produced. Sarah has been instrumental in developing management and succession plans to allow all the families to farm together.
What began as a dairy farm started by their grandfather, is now a 1000 head beef feedlot with forage production, on-farm abattoir, 72-acre cranberry farm and a 17,000 sq ft retail store and wedding venue. Brad is in charge of the beef; Travis is in charge of the cranberries and their sister Jennifer runs the retail and wedding venue. Recently the farm has renovated 20% of their cranberry acres introducing new varieties to double production. A water reservoir system allows the 30 million gallons of water to be recycled in the cranberry bogs during the harvest season. To allow for full integration of the beef operation, a $5 million abattoir was added to the operation in 2022. Utilizing waste tissue composting units allows for the integration of animal waste back into the forage fields. Having receiving support through the management transition, Brad & Travis hope to return the favour and mentor future BC farmers.
Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers President Danny Penner had this to say about the National Event. “Every year the regional finalists challenge the judges like never before. The future of agriculture is in good hands as long as young farmers like the ones that gathered at the COYF national program in Laval are in involved. They all showcased incredible operations. Greg and Sarah Stamp of Stamp Seeds and Travis and Brad Hopcott of Hopcott Farms will be exceptional ambassadors for Canadian agriculture.”
Every year this event brings recognition to outstanding farmers in Canada between 18 and 39 years of age who have exemplified excellence in their profession while fostering better urban-rural relations. The winners were chosen from seven regional finalists, including the following honourees from the other five regions:
Rémi Taillon & Sophie Brodeur – Ferme Réso- Sainte-Dominque, QC
Stewart Skinner & Jessica Kelly- Imani Farms Ltd- Listowel, ON
Jake & Sarah Leguee- Leguee Farms Ltd – Weyburn, SK
Harley & Brooklyn Siemens- Siemens Farms- Rosenort, MB
Marijke Oudshoorn & Willem van de Wetering – Spud Isle Farms – Morell PE
The stories the finalists shared throughout the week exemplified their passion and love for agriculture.
Celebrating 43 years, Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers’ program is an annual competition to recognize farmers that exemplify excellence in their profession and promote the tremendous contribution of agriculture. Open to participants 18 to 39 years of age, making the majority of income from agriculture, participants are selected from seven regions across Canada, with two national winners chosen each year. The program partner is Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. The program is sponsored nationally by CIBC, John Deere, Bayer, Sollio Agriculture and CN; our media partners, Glacier FarmMedia and WS and supported nationally by BDO.
For more information on this event please contact:
Carla Kaeding, Program Manager, Canada’s Outstanding Young Farmers