Acme’s Sawyer Family featured in Real Farm Lives

Sawyer Family Portrait

Real Farm Lives, a documentary web series takes the viewer on a journey out of the city and onto the farm. CropLife Canada, the association behind the series, aims to de-mystify food production in Canada.

On October 8, 2019 the second season premiered on realfarmlives.ca featuring Alberta’s farm family, Matt Sawyer, wife Tara and their three teenage children: Quin, Cassidy, and Emmett. Matt is a fourth-generation farmer who grows canola, wheat, barley and malt barley west of Acme. The other farm family featured is the Keddy Family from Nova Scotia. They grow strawberry plants and are the largest sweet potato producer east of Ontario.

The Sawyer family manages a 4,200-acre farm a bit west of Acme, Alberta that dates back to 1903. Said Matt Sawyer, “Too few Canadians know what it means to farm in the 21st century and how farmers are able to grow quality crops that feed the world. Matt endorsed and explained why farmers use up-to-date technology. “One thing is for sure - we couldn’t do it without crop protection products, which we use sustainably in the right place, at the right time, and with state-of-the-art equipment.”

Their segment was done during spray season highlighting Barley crops in June 2019 and when it was time to spray, it was just too windy. “We couldn’t spray in that wind,” said Tara Sawyer, “but it worked to emphasize the integrity of farmers to not spray in windy conditions.”

The two episodes featuring the Sawyer family, are each just over six minutes in length. “The episodes were designed to show a typical farm family,” said Tara, “and the filming crew from Toronto was with us from first thing in morning to evening. It was a great experience. We talk about the stress and the challenges we face with weather, crop health, and the market. It was two very long days and the crew was lovely to work with. We love to engage and there were some great conversations. Our children are very active on the farm and in this production as well, speaking of their involvement on the farm and their career paths. They would be fifth-generation farmers.”

“I grew up in a city,” said Tara. “I didn’t spend much time thinking about where my food came from. This experience with ‘Real Farm Lives’ is a great tool to connect to consumers, and it’s open and transparent. There is nothing to hide.”

According to CropLife Canada less than two per cent of Canada’s population lives on a farm and this lack of connection to farming has led to confusion about safe farm practices and food choices. Real Farm Lives aims to bridge the gap and provide an understanding of modern farming challenges, while exploring the role that plant science technologies such as pesticides and GMOs play in protecting the food we eat.

CropLife Canada represents manufacturers, developers and distributors of plant science innovations and is part of the CropLife International consortium, with members across 91 countries that champions agricultural innovations in crop protection and plant biotechnology.

Visit croplife.ca. To watch the documentary web series go to realfarmlives.ca