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Contestants in This French Beauty Pageant Strike a Pose—With Their Cows

Miss France Agricole with her prize via FB page (with permission)

Miss France Agricole with her prize via Facebook (with permission)

On December 6, the beauty pageant to select Miss France 2015 took place on the national stage in all its glittering glory. But a more self-deprecating pageant won the hearts and minds of Internet users.  

Christophe Teyssere calls it “the French feel-good story of the day” in his weekend news digest: the wildfire unexpected buzz created by a new beauty contest in France, Miss France Agricole, launched on Facebook by Patricia, a cattle farmer in Cantal, Central France. 

Exasperated by all the excess displayed during the official Miss France pageant (“her dress could feed one hundred homeless for a year” she rages), Patricia opened a Facebook page on the spot to launch a new competition, for “farmers only”: 

l'élection d'une vraie MISS France, celle qui représente vraiment notre France, avec des femmes de terrain.

The election of a real MISS France, one who really represents our France, with women in the field

Surprise! Two hundred and sixty-seven candidates rushed to mail in their picture on the farm with assorted cows, hens, goats, sheeps, pumpkins and tractors. The jury was composed of three men and one woman friend, none of them linked to agriculture. Media partnerships consisted of a Wiki for connected French farmers, wikiagri. And the winner was promised a grand prize: a bunch of flowers:

Below, the homemade video of the candidates’ pictures, a refreshing tour of rural France and of French country girls, all proud to participate without make-up or special grooming.

And the winner is...Milie Marin Fournier, 34, owner alongside her husband of a grape and fruit farm near Marseilles, in Southern France (her interview in French on Wikiagri). 

Milie, Miss France Agricole, et son T-shirt militant

Milie, Miss France Agricole, and her t-shirt “Proud to be a farmer”, very much in demand since her election  (image from her Facebook page)

200 participantes et il a fallut que ca tombe sur moi!!!  mais toutes les agricultrices sont des gagnantes!!!sans strass ni paillette!!!! Vive les paysannes et vive les femmes!!!!!  

200 participants and it had to be me!!!! But all farmers are winners!!!!! with no rhinestones nor glitter !!!! Long live the farmers, long live all women !!!!

What about the runner-ups ? Here is the first runner-up, Laurène, and the second, Katia (picture below):

katia, deuxième dauphine de Miss France Agricole

Katia, runner-up in the Miss France Agricole beauty pageant (image from the Miss France Agricole Facebook page)

Moreover, the competition was very inclusive. Among the 10,000 likes on Facebook given by readers to the different participants, Madeleine received a standing cyber-ovation:

madeleine

Madeleine and a friend (Image from the  Miss France Agricole 2015 Facebook page ) 

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