An Abbotsford couple have been named runners-up for the title of 2019 BC and Yukon Outstanding Young Farmers (BCOYF).
Chicken and hop growers Ray and Tracey Bredenhof of Bredenhof Farms in Abbotsford took the spot in a close competition with winners James and Cammy Lockwood of Lockwood Farms in Cobble Hill.
The results were announced March 12 at the awards ceremony in Abbotsford.
The Bredenhofs run a commercial broiler farm, producing 225,000 broiler chickens each year.
A few years ago, they participated in the resurgence of the Fraser Valley hop industry, planting 12 acres of hops.
Ray served as a director of the BC Chicken Growers Association and BC Agriculture Council for several years, but stepped down to become the founding president of the BC Hop Growers Association three years ago.
The Bredenhofs have now fully immersed themselves in the hop sector, processing and marketing their own hops and helping other farmers with their crops.
Ray is also an on-call firefighter, and both he and Tracey serve on various church and school committees.
BCOYF is sponsored by the BC Chicken Marketing Board, the BC Egg Marketing Board, BC Turkey Farmers, Clearbrook Grain and Milling, Farm Credit Canada, Hyline North America, Insure Wealth and Trouw Nutrition.
To be eligible for the award, applicants must be between 18 and 39 and derive most of their gross revenue from on-farm sources.
They are judged on the progress in their agricultural careers, the sustainability of their farming operations and involvement in their industry and community.
The Lockwoods will represent B.C. at the national event in Fredericton, NB, from Dec. 4-8. At that event, two national winners will be chosen from the winners in seven regions across Canada.