So it’s not too surprising the importance of agriculture to Yorkton and the east central region will be celebrating Nov.1-7, as together, the Yorkton Exhibition Association and Yorkton Chamber of Commerce have declared that week as Agriculture Week in Yorkton.
A key feature of the celebration is the 32nd Annual Grain Millers Harvest Showdown hosted by the Yorkton Exhibition Association, which is held this week too.
In recognition of Agriculture Week in the city, a unique brand has been created which has been made into a branding iron. The branding is a symbolic way to mark the week.
While much of the week will focus on Harvest Showdown locally, an event repeated with events such as the recent Ag Ex in Brandon, and upcoming Agribition in Regina, the importance of farming of course goes beyond a week where producers bring some cattle horses to the city for a few days each year.
Yorkton, as an example, is a city where the importance of agriculture can’t be overlooked.
It started almost before there was a community, and the work currently to preserve the old brick mill where area wheat was turned into flour for decades, is an indication of that long history.
And, for years Morris Industries and Leon-Ram were significant employers in the city.
That tradition has continued with a significant number of businesses based on agriculture, from Grain Millers processing oats, to Richardson and LDC crushing canola, to Heartland Livestock marketing area stock, to a number of companies handling area grain through inland terminals located here.
Add in the farm equipment and crop input sales businesses, and it’s easy to see the significant number of people working to serve farmers.
Those farms are now often very big business. It can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars for a single four-wheel drive tractor, or combine, with many farm units having multiples of both.
And, that doesn’t factor in accountants and lawyers or the dentist serving farm families and the list simply goes on and on.
When a farmer spends a dollar it quickly flows through a community, paying wages that then buy groceries, which pay more wages which go to pay local taxes, which helps fund local schools and skating rinks and sidewalks.
So marking the week is important as a way of letting the farm community know it is appreciated for what it contributes to the community, something that should not be forgotten by their ‘urban cousins’.