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A shared passion for agriculture
A shared passion for agriculture, animal science and barley rings presented 40 years apart, connect a father and daughter together on Golden Meadow Farm in Central Waterville, New Brunswick.
Samantha Christie and her father Nelson both studied Animal Science on the Truro Campus – Samantha transferring in from UPEI and Nelson completing his diploma in Farming Technology in 1982.
“I thought it would be nice for us to each have a symbol that a father and daughter could share to represent both of our times at the AC,” said Samantha. “Just to have that keepsake to remind us of our time at the AC and the community we were in while there, I think that was special and dad saw that too.”
With her Animal Science degree, Samantha hopes to bring home to the family farm some valuable knowledge that could not only keep the farm going, but also potentially improve the farm, to stay current, as science and technologies are always advancing.
“It’s just my parents and I on the farm, we have no hired hands so I’ve grown up working on the farm and being involved in every aspect that I can, from the dairy side to business management, to even crop management and more,” explained Samantha. Samantha hopes to take over the farm once her father is ready to pass it on.
Samantha is the 4th generation on the family farm which began with her great-grandfather. They milk around 20 purebred guernsey cattle in a tie-stall set up, which is often considered small for today’s standards.
“I think there is something to knowing each cow individually and living a smaller scaled way of life,” she added.
With an email address of iloveguernseycows Samantha is always promoting the breed and hopes that by either helping or running the family farm she can demonstrate the value of the guernsey cow.
“Maybe someday I will be able to specifically market our guernsey milk in our local communities if that were something viable for the future. I am always one to dream of what we could do with our farm, to perhaps grow or expand, but I also keep a realist view in mind as well.”
In the immediate future, Samantha plans to keep an eye open for agricultural positions and opportunities near her hometown in New Brunswick working in industry for a supplemental off-farm job.
“If you were to ask me of my plans, my answer will always be farming; there are just side roads I have to take first to get there full-time! But I’ve been born into agriculture, and it’s something I don’t ever plan to leave.”
Her father Nelson is proud of their farm and especially of his daughter.
"Planting the seed, providing the right conditions, watching it grow, and adapt to its environment, and knowing you were part of helping that seed grow, and grow well enough that it can start another generation is exciting," explained Nelson. "Whether that’s a plant or a cow, or your family, isn’t that really the bottom line? Watching them grow, improve, and adapt to todays challenges. What more do you want in life? That has to be the most fulfilling, satisfying purpose in life."
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