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GRANVILLE, Ohio — The Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association bestowed its highest honor on two individuals during the association’s annual conference, held Feb. 19-20 at Granville Middle School.
Deborah Stinner of Wayne County, and Ed Snavely of Knox County received the OEFFA Stewardship Award for their excellence in organics.
Stinner is a research scientist and administrative coordinator for the Organic Food and Farming Education and Research Program at The Ohio State University’s Ohio Agriculture Research and Development Center in Wooster, Ohio.
Her research specialty is organic farming systems, with a focus on specialty small grains, including hard wheat and spelt, for artisan bread and pasta products.
She helped found the OFFER program in 1998 in response to requests by organic producers and supporters to provide science-based information to Ohio’s organic farmers. OFFER is internationally recognized as a leader in organic farming research.
“For more than two decades, Deb Stinner has clearly articulated the challenges facing Ohio farmers,” said Mike Anderson, OEFFA’s organic education coordinator, who presented the award at the Saturday evening ceremony. “She has shared her understanding of what makes agriculture truly sustainable and helped farmers see how their farming decisions affect their profitability, their families and their communities.”
Snavely owns and operates Curly Tail Organic Farm, a 114-acre farm in Fredericktown. One of Ohio’s longest continuously certified farms, Snavely has been certified organic since 1989 and raises pastured pork and feed for livestock.
He has been a member of OEFFA since 1989 and currently serves on the board of directors as the Grain Growers Chapter representative and vice president. He has served as president of the Organic Crop Improvement Association Ohio Chapter, and also as a former board member of OCIA.
Snavely has hosted numerous farm tours; served as a featured presenter at OEFFA, OCIA, and American Livestock Breeds Conservancy meetings; and has been an honored delegate at the first and second Slow Food Terra Madre conferences in Italy.
In presenting the award, Mike Laughlin, OEFFA board member and 2010 Stewardship Award recipient, said Snavely “has long been a proponent of organic and sustainable agriculture and has worked to spread the word, not only locally, but across our nation and around the world.”