2009 IFAJ Photo Contest

Hans Menop from The Netherlands won the Star Prize for Agricultural Photography at the 2009 International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ) Congress held in Ft. Worth, Texas, July 31-Aug. 5.

Menop was the winner of the photo category "nature/landscape." Josef Berchthold, Germany, won the "people" category and Evan Collis, Australia, won the "production" category.

The winners of each category received a cash prize of 250 Euros and a certificate. The overall winner received a trophy, cash prize of 500 Euros and an IFAJ pin. The photo prize winners also received a certificate from contest sponsor DeLaval, presented by representative Temis Tormo.

The number of photo entries and the participation of countries reached new records this year.

The wining photo "By the river" shows cows grazing near the Rhine river. Judges were impressed by the beautiful composition, light and subject. "The photo reminds us of the importance of farming," a judge said. The photo was chosen as the winner because of its strong connection to agriculture and its professional execution. It was published in the magazine "Naober" in summer 2008.

Josef Berchtold's photo "Couple with cow" shows a couple leading a dairy cow on their way home. The photo symbolizes the worldwide ups and downs of the milking industry in 2008 and that dairy farmers have to find new ways to do business. "This photo was very close to the overall winner," one judge said. "It’s just like the end of a romantic movie." The judges noted the perfect composition of this classic agricultural scene. The photo was published in the weekly newspaper "Bayerisches Landwirtschaftliches Wochenblatt," No. 45/ 2008.

Evan Collis’ photo, "Present from timely rain," shows a harvester in action. "The photographer has thought out the composition and created his own masterpiece," said one judge. "Stunning colours, beautifully sharp and timed to perfection," was another comment. The judges were impressed by how the photographer successfully described the situation in Australia, where a severe drought persists. The photo was published under the headline "New labour saver header a present from timely rain" in the publication "Groundcover," March 2008.

This year the number of entries reached a new record with 157 photos, noted IFAJ Photo Contest Coordinator Katharina Seuser. Photographers from 20 countries – another record – entered the contest.

Along with the winning photos, five entries were honoured as "highly commended" and seven entries were honoured as "commended" photos.

Highly commended

Commended photos

The Star Prize in Photography, sponsored by DeLaval, is organised annually by the IFAJ to honour excellence in photography in the agricultural sector. Further information is available on the IFAJ website at www.ifaj.org, or by contacting photo prize coordinator Katharina Seuser ( kseuser(at)aol.com).