Com­mon sense reaps re­wards

The Glengarry News - Glengarry Supplement - - News - BY AN­GELA BROWN News Staff

Re­tired Glen­garry pro­ducer Doug Sova be­lieves fol­low­ing fam­ily tra­di­tion has helped him make sound de­ci­sions in his line of work. That com­mon sense at­ti­tude helped him win this year’s award of merit.

Mr. Sova, 61, a mem­ber of Glen­garry Soil and Crop Im­prove­ment As­so­ci­a­tion (SCIA) for close to 14 years, re­ceived the award for his farm­ing achieve­ment and long­time ded­i­ca­tion to the as­so­ci­a­tion at the re­cent an­nual gen­eral meet­ing in Alexan­dria.

He ran a small fam­ily dairy farm in Glen Roy be­fore re­tir­ing a num­ber of years ago and also pro­duced corn and soy­beans. He be­lieves small dairy farm­ers such as him­self have made progress by forg­ing ahead us­ing trusted strate­gies.

“You learn from gen­er­a­tions be­fore on how to make do and how to make things work,” Mr. Sova said, adding us­ing older equip­ment helps to keep costs man­age­able.

Glen­garry SCIA’s new pres­i­dent Mark Fraser rec­og­nized Mr. Sova for his in­no­va­tion in farm­ing prac­tices.

Mr. Sova said he has fol­lowed in his father’s foot­steps. “He was some­what of an in­no­va­tor,” re­called Mr. Sova. “It’s a small farm so you are not go­ing to have things that will show up on the world-stage, but it makes a dif­fer­ence for your own farm.”

He added fol­low­ing proper crop ro­ta­tion meth­ods is a prac­ti­cal way to be en­vi­ron­men­tally con­scious and main­tain smart ste­ward­ship prac­tices. “We were a dairy farm so we grew hay; it’s good to in­clude hay in your ro­ta­tion,” Mr. Sova added. He started dairy farm­ing in 1975 af­ter at­tend­ing Kemptville Col­lege.

“I worked all my life on the farm as I grew up,” he said. “I’ve spent prob­a­bly 35 years as a dairy farmer.” He hopes more peo­ple can par­tic­i­pate and be ac­tive in or­ga­ni­za­tions such as the Glen­garry Soil and Crop Im­prove­ment As­so­ci­a­tion, and also share their farm­ing knowl­edge at sim­i­lar gath­er­ings.

“You’re bound to learn some­thing if you do enough of it,” he re­lates. Af­ter win­ning the merit award, Mr. Sova, a for­mer as­so­ci­a­tion pres­i­dent, said he was “speech­less,” adding: “It’s nice to be rec­og­nized.”

Mr. Fraser ob­served: “Doug has shown great en­thu­si­asm for agri­cul­tural in­no­va­tion, whether it be the lat­est ma­chin­ery or tech­nol­ogy, or a piece of agri­cul­tural his­tory that has im­proved the way we farm to­day.” Mr. Fraser also com­mended the award win­ner for be­ing a strong sup­porter of good soil man­age­ment that de­liv­ers healthy yields, as well as en­sur­ing good en­vi­ron­men­tal ste­ward­ship.

He said Mr. Sova’s ded­i­ca­tion to the SCIA “set the stan­dard” for oth­ers to fol­low.

AN­GELA BROWN PHOTO

LONG-TIME SUP­PORT: Award of merit re­cip­i­ent Doug Sova, left, with Glen­garry Soil and Crop Im­prove­ment As­so­ci­a­tion’s 2016 pres­i­dent Mark Fraser at the re­cent an­nual gen­eral meet­ing in Alexan­dria.

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