The Jones Family from east of Balzac, Alberta, are recipients of the 2016 BMO Farm Family Award for Rocky View County.
Allen, Shanna, their two sons Barret and Harlen and Allen’s mother, Gladys, have a mixed farm that consists of 50 Hereford purebreds, 150 commercial cows, and 600 acres of hay land and 300 acres of pasture, while the grain side of the farm includes five thousand five hundred acres of barley, canola, and wheat.
The farm has been in the family since the Allen’s great grandfather settled there in 1903 and started producing grain, cattle and sheep.
Allen says there are challenges to running a family run business.
“It’s a special thing, there’s always challenges with it. The biggest challenge is how to keep it sustainable through the generations. So there are a lot of personalities involved but we treat it as a business”
Shanna adds that team work is what makes their operation work.
“We couldn’t do it without the family unit the couple of guys who work with us full-time, we also bring in some seasonal help specially during harvest, but it is a great lifestyle.”
Barret and Harlen are the fifth generation to farm the land.
Gladys takes great pride in her family’s accomplishments.
“I’ve seen a lot of changes, and I am so proud of my family that have kept on. My husband has been gone for a lot of years and it really thrills me to see that it is still carried on.”
The Jones family very strongly believes in being involved in groups and communities as well.
The family has been a part of the Calgary District and Hereford Club, the Balzac 4-H beef club, and the Kathryn Community Association.
Like the other families selected for the BMO Farm Family Awards this year they are passionate about producing food.
Other recipients of the award were:
Cardston County – Gruninger Farms, Albert & Shirley Gruninger & Familiy
County of Lethbridge – Papworth Farms Ltd., Richard & Gloria Papworth & Family
County of Newell No. 4 – Hubert & Wally Rommens Farms, Hubert, Patti & Scott Rommens & Wally & Jeanette Rommens
County of Warner – Eliason Farms Ltd., Troy & Sabrina Eliason & Family
Cypress County – Neubauer Farms, Mark & Nichole Neubauer
Kneehill County – Ferguson Family Farm, Don & Krista Ferguson & Family
MD of Foothills #31 – Pine Canyon Cattle Company, Flores & Margaret Groeneveld & Family
MD of Pincher Creek – Dryfork Ranches, Lester & Doris Hochstein & Family
MD of Ranchland No. 66 – Anchor P Cattle Company Ltd., Clark & Ethel Schlosser & Family
MD of Taber – Molnar’s Taber Corn & Pumpkins, James & Jennifer Molnar & Family
MD of Willow Creek – Darch Family Farm, Douglas & Olive Darch & Family
Mountain View County – B & D Simmentals, Brian & Theresa Rodger & Family
Rocky View County – Jones Hereford Ranch, Allen & Shanna Jones
Special Areas No. 2 – Broadview Ranch Ltd., Louise, Brian & Debra Berg & Family
Starland County – 3MC Stock Farms Ltd., Elson & Pat McDougald & Family
Vulcan County – Markert Seeds Ltd., Ron & Louise Markert & Family
Wheatland County – Praeker Family Farm, Herman & Barb Praeker & Family