6th Presidential Harvest Festival in Spala

"Don't fear for your tradition, if you have it in your hearts. No law, Polish or European, can change that", said the president. He farmers for their hard work, love and understanding towards land. He reminded also that everything what relates to countryside and soil cultivation is the integral part of our culture and national identity. He pointed out that the development of of Polish agriculture is connected with the development of European Community and thanks to the European assistance rural areas of Polish country are becoming friendlier for everyone. The president also congratulated farmers on the success of Polish food that has found recognition in the membership countries. 

The 6th Presidential Harvest Festival in Spala was traditionally commenced with the Holy Mass that was presided over by the Bishop of Lowiczo Franciszek Augustynski. After the Mass, the harvesting ceremony was inaugurated by the address of minister Jerzy Pilarczyk. He was followed by the host of the harvest festival - Elzbieta Blazejewska and by Janusz Kasztelewicz, the owner of the Beekeeping Farm 'Sadecki Bartnik'. In accordance with the old Polish tradition, they handed the president a symbolic loaf of bread .

First Presidential Harvesting Festival was organized on 28th of August 1927 on the initiative of  the president of the time  -Ignacy Moscicki. in this this national ceremony took part over 10 000 participants from the individual regions and district of Poland. For the following 9 years, up till 1938, holder of the highest state office honoured the hard work of a farmer. In 2000, roman Jagielinski, who was the chairman of Towarzystwi Inicjatyw Gospodarczych i Edukacyjnych ( the Association for Educational and Economic Initiatives), reinstate the tradition of Presidential Harvest Festival. 

First Lady, Jolanta Kwasniewska, highlighted the advantages of Polish food, which is widely appreciated in the world. "We are pleased to hear so much good about our Polish cuisine and to be received with our traditional dishes even in the most remote places of the world. We, Polish people, are determined, although in the past we were not aware of this. More importantly, we want to be noticed and this is what makes me believe that Polish agriculture awaits many positive experiences in the future", said First Lady.

Harvesting festival was accompanied by artistic performances, folk music concerts, folk art exhibitions and displays of agricultural products. The most impressive were the harvesting wreaths. This year, due to the upcoming elections, many political parties came to Spala. The village was flooded with election posters pasted in all possible places. President Kwasniewski, drawing attention to the elections, encouraged fellow citizens to vote by saying "Chose those who proved to be there for Polish agriculture. Be cautious toward those who only appear just before the elections".

Jolanta Falkowska - Pierwszy Portal Rolny, 19 th September 2005 r.

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