Important dates

Next application cycle: October 2024

Overview

As central gathering places and major event hosts, Alberta’s agricultural societies continue to find innovative ways to help their communities thrive. Driven by passion and initiative, they develop creative solutions that enhance the quality of life in towns and cities across the province. The Innovation Award recognizes ag societies for their innovation, resilience and commitment to their communities.

Eligibility

Ag societies may submit an innovative project for an award based on the size of their community in Alberta. Up to 3 awards will be given each year, with one or more awards in each category:

  • a smaller primary agricultural society in a community with less than 1,000 people
  • a larger primary agricultural society in a community with 1,000 or more people
  • regional agricultural society

The innovative project must:

  • be new or a new phase of an existing project
  • promote community engagement
  • demonstrate a creative solution to maximize an opportunity or overcome a challenge
  • achieve a positive social and economic impact on the community

How to apply

Step 1. Complete the form

Alberta Agricultural Society Innovation Award application form

Step 2. Submit the nomination

Electronic submissions are preferred. Scan your nomination form and email it to: [email protected].

Or, mail in your paper nomination to:

Alberta Agricultural Society Innovation Award
J.G.O’ Donoghue Building
7000 - 113 Street
Edmonton, AB T6H 5T6
Phone: 780-554-3780

After you apply

A selection panel with representatives from the Alberta Association of Agricultural Societies and Alberta Agriculture and Irrigation will select the award recipients. The panel evaluates the nominations by rating:

  • creativity
  • community engagement
  • opportunity maximized or challenge overcome
  • community impact
  • overall impression

Each year, the Alberta government presents up to 3 awards during the Alberta Association of Agricultural Societies’ annual convention. Award recipients will receive:

  • recognition at an awards ceremony
  • a banner to display in their facilities
  • a certificate from the Minister

Award recipients

Previous award recipients: Agricultural Societies Innovation Award

  • 2023 recipients

    Smaller primary ag society

    KAC Agricultural Society – The ag society integrated a hydroponic food modular system Altario School's Agriculture Academy. This initiative addresses food supply chain challenges by offering the community year-round access to fresh and affordable produce. Additionally, it provides students with hands-on learning opportunities, fostering skills in entrepreneurship, agribusiness, innovation, technology in agriculture and research.

    Larger primary ag society

    Stettler District Agricultural Society -The ag society introduced the Community Kitchens program, playing a crucial role in supporting underserved residents within the community. The society provided its upgraded kitchen free of charge, becoming a catalyst for various new projects and opportunities for community groups, families and individuals.

    La Crete Agricultural Society – The ag society introduced its Heritage Experimental Orchard initiative, which was established to boost the variety and abundance of fruit trees in the northern region, bolstering food security and supporting health, economic growth and food stability in northern Alberta. Over time, the project evolved to encompass experimental and educational aspects, with the potential for future economic benefits to the region.

  • 2022 recipients

    Smaller primary ag society

    Foremost & District Agricultural Society – The ag society collaborated with Foremost School to create an exclusive rodeo academy for students in grades 7 to 12. This academy is the first-of-its-kind for this age group and open to youth from outside the school district, as well as international students. It consists of a 10-week options class in the fall and spring, which has been integrated into school programming. During class students learn barrels, poles, roping, horsemanship and other relevant topics. The academy is positioned to have a direct, positive impact on the school and local community.

    Larger primary ag society

    Grovedale Community Club & Agricultural Society – In June 2022, the ag society opened a new community daycare, which is its first year-round, full-time staffed business. The facility has a capacity to accommodate up 20 children on a fulltime basis. It was completed in partnership with the MD of Greenview to respond to growing demand for daycare in the area. In addition to creating job opportunities, this new business honours the ag society’s commitment to support local families and keep them in the community.

    Regional ag society

    Lloydminster Agricultural Exhibition Association – The association re-envisioned a retired event and focused on creating an environment where new business relationships could be forged in the local cattle and agricultural sectors. Their solution: the Cattleman’s Call. This new annual event includes bull shows, networking socials, an ag-business tradeshow and a showcase for breeding programs. It is set to attract hundreds of participants and generate business opportunities in the years to come.

  • 2021 recipients

    Larger primary ag society

    Calmar & District Agricultural Society – In 2021, the Calmar & District Agricultural Society and local curling club were gifted a piece of land to farm. Using donated materials, machinery, seed, fertilizer, crop insurance and a host of volunteers, profits from the harvest were distributed to the curling club and other Leduc County charities and organizations, resulting in a tremendous impact in the local community.

    Rocky Mountain House Agricultural Society – The Society has been involved in the in-person Grade 4 Education Agricultural Tour for years. Due to COVID-19, a new approach was required, which resulted in the development of a series of agriculture education videos. These videos featured local farms and producers covering a wide range of topics from farm safety, equine safety and dairy, beef and sheep production, to information on 4-H steers. These videos have also been available to the public, and can be incorporated into future in-person educational programming.

  • 2020 recipients

    Winners

    • Smaller primary ag society: Bezanson Agricultural Society
    • Larger primary ag society: Millarville Racing & Agricultural Society
    • Regional ag society: Grande Prairie Regional Agricultural & Exhibition Society

    Honourable mentions

    • Ardrossan Recreation & Agricultural Society
    • Eaglesham & District Agricultural Society
    • Stettler Agricultural Society
    • Crossfield/Madden Agricultural Society
    • High River Agricultural Society
    • Lloydminster Agricultural Exhibition Association

Contact

Connect with the Innovation Award team:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-554-3780
Toll free: 310-0000 before the phone number (in Alberta)
Email: [email protected]

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