A project that promotes agriculture through social media swung into high gear on Tuesday.
#FARMVOICES attracted well over 2,000 electronic messages on Earth Day, said Sarah Wray, a director with the Bashaw-based FarmOn Foundation. That was the climax of the campaign, which urges farmers to share photos and messages about their industry.
“It was a really good success,” said Wray, adding that organizers with the FarmOn Foundation have yet to tally the submissions posted on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
She’s confident the total exceeded the approximately 2,000 messages collected on Earth Day in 2013, which was the first year for #FARMVOICES.
“I would venture to guess we well-surpassed that this year.”
Those who took part were urged to provide a photo and message related to one of three themes: what they love about farming, the challenges they face as farmers, and how they care for their land and livestock.
“This year, what was really cool about it was we had a lot more consumer participation,” said Wray.
She also estimated that more then half of the messages received came from outside of Canada, most notably from the United Kingdom and Australia. That’s because FarmOn this year partnered with The Farming Forum of the United Kingdom and the Future Farmers Network of Australia to spread the word.
Wray said more such partnerships will be sought next year, as #FARMVOICES continues.
“Ultimately, as we move forward into this year and into the coming calendar year, we’re looking at more ways to get more of these messages out,” she said.
“We’re actually in the early stages of looking at how we can create an on-the-ground gallery of pictures and stories that we can take to different events and different places that consumers are already sitting to introduce them more to what #FARMVOICES is about.”
#FARMVOICES submissions can be viewed online at FarmOn.com/farmvoices.