Meet this year's Outstanding Young Farmers


The year’s Outstanding Young Farmers were named this past weekend, in a virtual event December 1st to 3rd, 2021.

Winners for the west and east are Raymond and Tracey Bredenhof, of R&T Poultry & Bredenhof Hops in Abbotsford, B.C., and Jenny Butcher and Wes Kuntz, Little Brown Cow Dairy, Brantford, Ont.

For the last 41 years, this event brings recognition to outstanding farmers in Canada between 18 and 39 years of age who have exemplified excellence in their profession while fostering better urban-rural relations.

The Bredenhofs have spent the last 15 years growing their poultry business from a 5,000 broiler operation into a 40,000 broiler per cycle operation known as R& T Poultry, despite a barn fire in 2020. Six years ago, the couple started Bredenhof Hops with just six acres of hops. They have since added a hop harvesting and processing plant, and have now expanded to marketing and distribution to import and export hops around the world. They are now the largest distributor of Canadian grown hops.

Jenny Butcher and Wes Kuntz started farming together 13 years ago with rented quota, barn, yard site, and 20 owned Jersey cows. Fast forward to six years ago when they launched the Little Brown Cow Dairy at Brantford, Ont. Now on their own property, Butcher and Kuntz run a 70-cow herd and process 100 per cent of their milk into milk and cheese.  In 2017, they launched the “Local Food Emporium” with an emphasis on local products, including their own beef, milk, and cheese.

The winners were chosen from seven regional finalists, including the following honourees from the other five regions:

  • Roelof and Mary Van Benthem, Van Benthem Dairy Ltd, Spruce View, Alta.
  • Michael and Jessica Lovich, Lovholm Dairy, Balgonie, Sask.
  • Andre and Katie Steppler, Steppler Farms Ltd, Miami, Man.
  • Geneviève Grossenbacher and James Thompson, Notre petite ferme -Lochaber Partie Ouest, Que.
  • Philip and Katie Keddy, Charles Keddy Farms Ltd, Woodville, NS

Stay tuned for a one-on-one interview with Jenny Butcher on RealAgriculture!

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