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Abbotsford family celebrates more than 100 years of farming

In the heart of the Fraser Valley, the Donaldson family of Bradner Farms has been innovating and working the land for more than a century.

Four generations of family and agricultural history are being recognized with a provincial Century Farm Award that celebrates the Donaldsons’ dedication to farming, each other and the community they’ve nourished since 1912.

“It’s really special to see multiple generations continue the legacy of their family farm for over 100 years, adapting and innovating along the way,” said Lana Popham, Minister of Agriculture and Food. “Congratulations to the Donaldsons on this milestone, and thank you for your commitment to regenerative farming and for providing quality products to the Fraser Valley and the rest of the province. Your family’s accomplishments are inspiring, and I look forward to seeing the next generation continue to succeed with Bradner Farms.”

The story of Bradner Farms began in 1912, when Caleb and Winifred Manuel arrived in Vancouver by train from Lewisport, NL. The Manuels settled in the small Abbotsford community of Bradner where they cleared the land using horses, built a farmhouse and started farming daffodils, poultry and dairy. That farmhouse is still lived in today by the family's current generation of farmers.

Buller Manuel, Caleb and Winifred’s son, took over the farm in 1953, after spending his early career working in logging camps. Upon his death in 1976, Buller’s will bequeathed the farm to Robert Flett and Muriel Joy Donaldson, who continued farming daffodils, poultry and dairy, and began farming beef cattle to sell in the Fraser Valley.

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