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The President of the Republic congratulated the winner of the Farmer of the Year 2005 title

President Arnold Rüütel attended the closing conference of the competition Farmer of the Year 2005President Arnold Rüütel today attended the closing conference of the competition "Farmer of the Year 2005", organised by the weekly newspaper Maaleht and the Estonian Chamber of Agriculture and Commerce. This year the Farmer of the Year was chosen from among family farmers who do the farm work mainly with the help of family members and beside farm production also attach importance to clean natural environment.

At the conference that took place in the National Library of Estonia 16 this year's nominees for the Farmer of the Year title spoke about their last year's endeavours and the result of their work. This was followed by a debate on the issue: "Is there a future for family farming?" in which Deputy Secretary General of the Ministry of Agriculture Andres Oopkaup, Chairman of the Board of the Estonian Farmers Central Association Arvo Veidenberg, and the Farmer of the Year 2004 Arvo Mölder expressed their opinions.

The Chairman of the Jury, Professor Olev Saveli, announced this year's title winner. The Farmer of the Year 2005 title was awarded to Arvo Kuutok, a farmer from Järvamaa who is engaged mainly in dairy cattle farming.

The President of the Republic congratulated the nominees and the winner of the title on the high recognition given to them. In his speech, President Rüütel stressed that hopefully in the future a new dimension that expresses ideas of sustainable development and influences population regeneration processes would gain more and more importance in rural life. "Increasingly deepening understanding of the importance of healthy way of life and use of renewable sources of energy as well as the spreading of green thinking are weighty development factors. Through them rural life will influence the future of the whole mankind. They will enhance the development potential in rural areas, increase employment possibilities and incomes, or saying it in one word - enhance wellbeing," the head of Estonian state said.

Public Relations Unit of the Office of the President
Kadriorg, October 11, 2005

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