Farmers are being recognized real-life “superstars,” thanks to a Loudoun Economic Development trading card program that is back for its fourth season.
This year, the selection process for the award-winning program is being opened up to nominations from Loudoun residents. If you know a farmer who is a great example to kids of what a farmer is and does, you can nominate him or her by Jan. 25 at biz.Loudoun.gov/Farmer-Cards.
“Finding the next generation of farmers is important to the future of Loudoun,” Loudoun Economic Development Executive Director Buddy Rizer said. “If we want to raise a generation of educated kids who understand and appreciate where their food comes from, it’s important to help them engage, and our farmer trading cards help do that. We think that once kids are exposed to the many opportunities in agriculture, they’ll get excited about the industry.”
The farmer trading cards are distributed to elementary school students in Loudoun County Public Schools each spring to coincide with the start of baseball season. Many of the farmers depicted on the trading cards make personal appearances at Loudoun schools to autograph their cards.
“Our farmers are superstars, so it’s only right that we treat them that way,” Acting Agricultural Development Officer Vanessa Wagner said. “The work they do is on display in everyday life in what we eat, in our homes and in our community. This program helps put faces to that work.”
The cards have generated so much excitement that local, regional and national media ran stories about them. School systems in other states have considered replicating the cards for their own communities.
Several dozen Loudoun farmers have been featured on the trading cards in the last three seasons, but there are hundreds more who are eligible for nomination. The criteria for eligibility are that the nominee live and farm in Loudoun County. Alcohol-related businesses are not eligible because the trading cards will be distributed to minors.1 comment