Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario Commentary
By Brooke Wareing, CFFO Communications Intern
This week has been Ontario Agriculture Week, providing the perfect opportunity to celebrate agriculture and give thanks in this harvest season. Ontario Agriculture Week celebrates all farmers, whether you are a greenhouse, livestock or specialty crop producer. From October 2-8, people are encouraged to thank a farmer and enjoy local produce. You can celebrate by purchasing local produce at your farmers market, cooking with local ingredients or perhaps stopping by an agriculture booth at your local fall fair. The purpose of Ontario Agriculture Week is to recognize and reflect on the important and valued place that agriculture holds in Ontario.
It’s fitting that Ontario Agriculture Week happens right before Thanksgiving, another time of reflection, where we are reminded to give thanks for everything that the Lord has provided for us throughout the year. As we sit down for our Thanksgiving dinner, many of us will take a moment to reflect upon the origin of our meals. Who harvested the sweet potatoes in that casserole? Who raised the turkey? Which farmer grew those green beans? With over 200 commodities grown in Ontario, all components of our meals could be the result of an Ontario farmer.
This is an important time of year as harvest begins for many across the province. Autumn harvest is when we see the results of year-round labour, the fruits of hard work and determination. As farmers harvest the results of working the land, it is important to be thankful for the opportunity to be stewards of the environment and to reap the rewards that nature provides.
Stewardship reminds farmers that while they may work the land, it is important to utilize it respectfully so that future generations may also reap the benefits of a plentiful harvest. Farmers recognize their duty to enhance the stability of land and care for environmental systems.
Good stewardship is not just about doing our duty, however. It is a sign of Thanksgiving—of gratitude for what the land provides. This time of year, we reflect on the results of farming and the autumn harvest. As times and weather may become trying and unpredictable, it is important to consider the resources that are before us, including our food and the land upon which we grow it. Giving thanks allows us to stay humble and true to our roots and remember where we came from and what our purpose is as stewards of the land and servants of the Lord.