The Fédération de l’UPA de la Montérégie has unveiled the five finalists for the Bon Coup award. The prize highlights the year’s most successful agricultural initiative and will be awarded during the 10th edition of the Gala Agristars de la grande Montérégie, which is scheduled to take place on April 3 at the Étoile du Quartier Dix30 in Brossard.
This year also marks the 10th anniversary of the merger between the Saint-Hyacinthe and Saint-Jean-Valleyfield federations which led to the creation of a single federation representing the entire Montérégie region. “On April 3, we will take advantage of this event to highlight the exceptional commitment of the producers who promote our regional agriculture and actively contribute to its development. We want to pay tribute to them by recognizing the work they have accomplished, while highlighting the success stories of the past ten years,” said Jérémie Letellier, the president of the Fédération de l’UPA de la Montérégie.
The Bon Coup award celebrates actions that enhance the practice of agriculture in areas such as development, union life, prevention, and promotion of the profession. The 2023 finalists include the Producteurs de grains Montérégie-ouest for their project to install educational panels on grain production along bicycle paths; les Producteurs de lait de Montérégie Est et Ouest for their Lait’vénement social 2022 which raised $9,500 for Au Coeur des familles agricoles (ACFA); the Syndicat de l’UPA Vaudreuil-Soulanges and its efforts to raise awareness of agricultural issues among elected officials; the Syndicat de l’UPA Brome-Missisquoi and Syndicat de l’UPA Haute-Yamaska for the creation of a committee focused on the impacts of change to the administrative region; and the Syndicat de l’UPA Jardins-de-Napierville for its “Mon agriculture, je l’aime!” contest.
More than 50 producers and organizations are expected to be honoured during the gala in various categories, including agro-environment work, entrepreneurial success, human resources management, the young farmer and woman farmer of the year, as well as awards for dedication to the union. This year’s Coup de chapeau award will be presented to an Ormstown-based maple syrup producer, Serge Beaulieu, for his leading role in the development of maple syrup markets over the past decade.
To mark its 10th anniversary, the Federation has also introduced two new Bon Coup awards honouring the projects that have had the greatest impact over the past decade. One of the winners will be decided by the jury, while the second award will be presented to the project that receives the most votes from the public.
A total of four projects initiated by the Haut-Saint-Laurent syndicate, which were previously named as winners of the Bon Coup award, have been nominated in this special category. In 2013, the local union was recognized following the 2012 merger of the Chateauguay-Valley, Ormstown and Saint-Anicet groups to become the first and only bilingual syndicate in the province. In 2014, the local union worked with representatives from the MRC du Haut-Saint-Laurent to produce over 70 road signs that were installed on secondary roads to improve road safety where agricultural work was taking place. In 2016, the local union worked with six municipalities to ensure a varied rate for agricultural businesses was applied to property taxes; and in 2017, the syndicate was recognized for having achieved gender parity among its board of directors.
Agricultural producers and the public are now able to vote for the project that has had the greatest impact and influence in promoting or raising awareness about agriculture in the Montérégie over the past ten years. To view the full list of nominations and to vote, visit http://bit.ly/3ZmIXKA.