WRIGHTS WIN ALABAMA FARM OF DISTINCTION TITLE
BIRMINGHAM, Ala.-- David and Martha Wright of Plantersville were named the Alabama Farm-City Committee's 2009 Farm of Distinction winner during a luncheon Monday in Birmingham.
|David and Martha Wright of Plantersville, seated in Gator, captured the 2009 Farm of Distinction award during the annual Farm-City Committee's awards luncheon Monday in Birmingham. Back row, from left, Federation President Jerry A. Newby, Jim Allen of Alabama Farmers Cooperative, Tom Tribble of John Deere, Lester Killebrew of SunSouth, Lynne Morton of TriGreen and Ed Underwood of TriGreen.|
As this year's winner, the Wrights received prizes valued at more than $10,000 and will represent Alabama in the Southeastern Farmer of the Year competition during the Sunbelt Agricultural Expo in Moultrie, Ga., Oct. 20-22.
As owners of Wright's Nursery and Greenhouse, the Wrights are the first to admit their operation isn't the biggest in the state, but say they instead focus on doing things efficiently.
"Efficiency is just the name of the game," David said. "You can be left behind, a has-been before you know it these days. Automation and the efficiency of that automation is what's keeping us all afloat. We can produce a better product at a more competitive price with that automation."
The Wrights produce mostly bedding plants for independent garden centers in the Birmingham, Huntsville, Tuscaloosa and Montgomery markets. David's son, Davy, has also expanded the business to the Internet through www.WrightGardens.com, and the family has registered its trademark "Alabama Grown", which appears on all their products. In addition, the family owns manages a 1,400-acre Treasure Forest.
The Wrights are active in the Alabama Farmers Federation, Alabama Nursery and Landscape Association and the Plantersville Baptist Church. David and Martha have two children, Davy and Diane.
As Alabama's Farm of Distinction winner, the Wrights received a John Deere Gator donated by www.SunSouth.com and TriGreen Equipment dealers in Alabama, Georgia and Tennessee. They also received a $1,250 gift certificate from Alabama Farmers Cooperative, redeemable at any of its member Quality Co-op stores. The Alabama Farmers Federation and Alfa Health presented the Wrights with an engraved, mahogany farm sign and as the state winner, the Wrights will receive a $2,500 cash award and an expense-paid trip to the Sunbelt Agricultural Expo. The Sunbelt winner will receive $14,000, plus several other prizes.
Five other finalists also were honored during the program, held in conjunction with the Alabama Farmers Federation State Women's Conference. They were Glynn C. and Bobbie Debter of Blount County, John William and Mary Sudduth of Winston County, Nealy and Betty Barrett of Elmore County, Carl and Donna Sanders of Coffee County and Mickel and Sybil Shepherd of Clarke County. Each finalist received a $250 gift certificate from Alabama Farmers Cooperative.
The Farm-City Committee of Alabama presents the Farm of Distinction Award annually. Farm-City Week is observed nationally each year the week before Thanksgiving as a way to help bridge the gap between rural and urban residents.