Reigning Champion Farmer, Moses Jumi, has once again copped the coveted title at the finals of the National Champion Farmer competition held on July 7.
The National Champion Farmer selection is one of the highlights of the annual Denbigh Agricultural and Industrial Show, which is scheduled to take place from July 31 to August 2 in May Pen, Clarendon.
Coordinator of the event, Derrick Vermont told JIS News that the competition this year involved "very good farms right across the island", adding that in spite of the drought many farms were still in good shape.
"Farming can be done on any acre of land once you put your mind to it," he said pointing out that "it offers rich rewards and benefits to persons who are dedicated and determined."
Mr. Vermont informed that agriculture was not the domain of men as women were also encouraged to enter the competition.
He divulged that history was created this year with Marcia Clarke emerging the winner of the Young Champion Farmer Competition. Ms. Clarke is from French Park, Manchester.
The Young champion farmer competition, established ten years ago seeks to encourage young people 35 years old and under, to enter an agricultural competition to broaden their knowledge base and be current with modern and technological practices.
The Champion Farmer Award is given based on a number of criteria including the appearance of the farm, efficiency and innovations in farming and the quality of record keeping, which is the most important section.
Farmers competing for the prize are grouped into categories from A - D according to the size of their properties.
There are prizes for the winners of each of these categories and the National Champion Farmer and two runners up are chosen from the winners of these four categories. There are also sectional prizes for Champion Coffee Farmer, Champion Cocoa Farmer, Champion Pig Farmer and Champion Banana Farmer.
Sponsors of the competitions include Antilles Chemical Company, Hi-Pro Farm Supplies, the Jamaica Agricultural Development Foundation and British West Indies Airways.
The National Champion Farmer receives $50,000 cash, a prize trip abroad and fertilizer. First place in each class receives $12,000 while second place in each class receives $8,000 and third place receives $5,000 each.