Ini­tia­tive links ru­ral, ur­ban com­mu­ni­ties

Bridg­ing the gap be­tween the ru­ral and ur­ban com­mu­ni­ties in New Zealand is the idea be­hind a new so­cial me­dia cam­paign launched by Waitaki Ir­ri­ga­tors Col­lec­tive (WIC).

The Orchardist - - News -

Called “Ask a Farmer” the ini­tia­tive in­vites mem­bers of the public to ask farm­ers ques­tions about any­thing to do with farm­ing life, in­clud­ing hor­ti­cul­ture.

Pol­icy man­ager for WIC, El­iz­a­beth Soal, said there seems to be a widen­ing gap be­tween the ru­ral and ur­ban com­mu­ni­ties in New Zealand, and so­cial me­dia has great po­ten­tial to help bridge that gap.

“Our pop­u­la­tion is be­com­ing in­creas­ingly ur­banised, and that means that fewer young peo­ple get to ex­pe­ri­ence life on a farm, or have a good un­der­stand­ing about where their food comes from. For some peo­ple, it might be that the only ex­po­sure they have to farm­ing is what they see through their car win­dow as they drive down the state high­way. We want to change that, and bring farm­ing life to them through dig­i­tal so­cial me­dia chan­nels”

“How many peo­ple have driven down State High­way One be­hind a strange-look­ing piece of farm­ing equip­ment and won­dered ‘what on earth does that thing do?’ Or driven past a field and won­dered what the crop is growing in it? We want to an­swer those sorts of ques­tions.”

WIC is well placed to an­swer all kinds of ques­tions about farm­ing, as its farmer mem­bers have a di­verse range of land uses, in­clud­ing hor­ti­cul­ture, viti­cul­ture, dairy­ing, sheep and beef farm­ing, crop­ping, and deer farm­ing.

The launch video can be found on the WIC Face­book page, and ques­tions can be left in the com­ments sec­tion of the page or by fol­low­ing WIC on Twit­ter us­ing the hash-tag #aska­farmer.

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