Westwind Weekly News
Magrath High School hosted the town’s celebration of the first Canadian Agriculture Day on Feb. 13, informing students of agriculture’s impact on our daily lives and informing them of opportunities for employment in the field.
“The idea is to foster conversations between people who produce the food — farmers and ranchers — and then people who consume the food, which is all of us,” said Melissa Stanford, the project co-ordinator for the Sustainable Ag Partnership between the Town of Magrath, Westwind School Division and Cardston County.
“It’s supposed to be a two-way dialogue. People can ask questions about anything they really want to know about where their food comes from and things that the producer maybe wishes that the average consumer knew about the food that they grow and produce.”
The event included a sampling of Canadian-produced snacks, which was intended to get students to “think about where this food may have come from locally.”
Selections included dairy products, as well as puffed wheat squares to specifically represent Alberta.
The kids then went on a Pokemon Go-style augmented reality scavenger hunt.
There were four topic areas — why should we care about agriculture, keeping the world fed, sustainability and careers in agriculture.
Jordan Brame, a science and math teacher who helped organize the event, was the mind behind the scavenger hunt, which uses an app called Metaverse to provide them with interactive information about the industry.
“The kids can scan a barcode and it will send them to a floating character,” he said.
“They collect tokens at the different areas, and then they can use those tokens to enter their name into a draw for a Cineplex card.”
Stanford said that careers in agriculture beyond farming and ranching are often overlooked — processing, marketing, nutritionists, research and development, law and accounting are all key components of the agricultural process.
“Even though I’m involved in primary production, I take for granted to an extent where food comes from and what’s behind the apple behind my desk or the glass of milk that’s in my cup,” she said.