The Ulster Farmers’ Union’s (UFU) schools’ competition aims to encourage pupils to support local produce in Northern Ireland.

The ‘supporting local produce in NI’ competition is being run in partnership with the Bank of Ireland Open Farm Weekend is sponsored by Asda.

The competition is open to all playgroups, nursey, primary and special schools and is split into five sections.

The closing date for entries to the competition is Friday, March 29, 2024.

The theme of local produce is set to provide opportunities for teachers and parents to start discussions around the importance of supporting local food production, the UFU said.

The goal of the competition is to raise awareness amongst pupils on the origin of food and the role of farming families in society – including producing food, caring for the countryside, providing employment and supporting rural communities and the economy.

The competition prizes include:

  • £200 for the winning school in each section plus transport for a class to nearest participating open farm;
  • £40 for the winning pupil in each section;
  • £100 for the runner-up school in each section plus a Bramley apple tree;
  • £20 for the runner-up pupil in each section;
  • Planting set for third place pupil in each section;
  • Certificates.

The UFU said entry forms have been sent electronically to all playgroups, nursery, pre-school primary and special schools.

The Bank of Ireland Open Farm Weekend will take place from Friday, June 14 – Sunday, June 16, 2024.