Posted on 25 September 2019
Today, winning farmers from across the Baltic Sea region will be recognized and presented with the WWF Baltic Sea Farmer of the Year Award at a ceremony in Warsaw, Poland. The award was initiated by WWF in 2009 to recognize farmers who are taking exemplary steps to reduce nutrient runoff to the Baltic Sea.
The Baltic Sea Farmer of the Year Award competition selects national winners and one regional winner from eleven countries within the Baltic Sea catchment. This year’s winning farms range from a small organic crop farm to a 3,420-hectare conventional crop and livestock cooperative. Each farmer has a unique story to tell about the methods they have tried and successfully implemented to reduce nutrient runoff to the Baltic Sea.
Among the winners this year, the national winner from Denmark have been selected as the overall winner in the region. Danish farmers Kristian and Maria Lundgaard-Karlshøj will today be presented with the WWF Baltic Sea Farmer of the Year Award at a ceremony in Warsaw, Poland. The international jury is impressed by the diverse range of measures employed at the large-scale farm to reduce nutrient runoff, as well as by the farmers’ dedication to pursuing new strategies for sustainable and future-proof agriculture. The award was created by WWF in 2009 to recognize farmers who are taking exemplary steps to reduce nutrient runoff to the Baltic Sea.
An award for farmers who make a difference
The WWF Baltic Sea Farmer of the Year Award was launched in 2009 to highlight best practices and recognize farmers who are leading the way to reduce nutrient runoff on their farms. Applications are received from farmers from countries within the Baltic Sea catchment who are practicing both organic and conventional farming, as well as many different types of agriculture. The national winners, chosen by juries in each country, receive a prize of 1,000 Euros. From these national winners, an international jury selects a regional winner who receives a grand prize of 10,000 Euros.
So far, around 70 farmers around the Baltic Sea have been awarded for their efforts and use of innovative measures. The countries participating in the award are Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and Sweden. Belarus and Ukraine are also among the countries participating in the award, as they too are part of the Baltic Sea catchment and have an important role to play to reduce nutrient runoff.
“Almost all of the of the Baltic Sea is still affected by eutrophication, and the role sustainable agriculture plays in reducing this threat cannot be underestimated,” says [local spokesperson]. “This year’s dedicated farmers show us that effective measures exist to reduce nutrient runoff, and that implementing them can yield beneficial results for both people and nature.”
This year’s award ceremony will take place the 25 September at an agriculture and environment conference in Warsaw, Poland. In addition to recognizing this year’s winning farms from around the Baltic region, the conference will bring together key representatives from the agricultural and environmental field. A range of relevant topics will be discussed, ranging from sustainable agricultural practices to the reformation of the Common Agricultural Policy. The conference will also present a unique opportunity for attending farmers to exchange ideas, concrete solutions, and collaborative approaches for reducing nutrient runoff.
Baltic Sea Farmer of the Year criteria
Baltic Sea Farmer of the Year website
Green Agriculture for a Sustainable Sea 2019 conference
Ottilia Thoreson, Director, WWF Baltic Programme
+46 8 624 74 15
Hannah Griffiths Berggren, Communications Manager, WWF Baltic Programme
+46 8 515 114 83