Harvesting Hope threshing bee sets new world record as 139 antique machines operate for 15 minutes straight
The 8,000 people who attended Harvesting Hope July 31 can now know they indeed saw the world antique threshing record set.
They can also know that they saw an event that raised $134,000 for alleviating world hunger and preserving Canadian farm history.
Guinness World Records has certified that the 139 antique threshing machines that finished the challenge of threshing for 15 minutes straight at the Manitoba Agricultural Museum in Austin broke the previous record set in St. Albert, Ont., by 111 machines.
Harvesting Hope saw 148 threshers attempt the record, but nine couldn’t complete the 15 minutes required.
Crews and machines from both Canada and the United States took part in the event, which raised money for the Canadian Foodgrains Bank and the Manitoba Agricultural Museum. More than 750 volunteers took part.
The impact of the event goes far beyond the money raised and the public awareness and community building that occurred at the Manitoba Threshermen’s Reunion and Stampede.
The federal government matches the foodgrains bank’s funding at a three-to-one ratio, so the $67,000 it received from donations will become almost $300,000, which it can put toward fighting hunger and contributing to food security in Africa.
“We were proud to be part of this record-breaking event and grateful to receive a donation to help farmers in the developing world,” said John Longhurst, the foodgrain bank’s director of resources and public engagement.
The museum is the home of hundreds of threshing machines and requires constant work to keep the sometimes century-old machines running.