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Arkansas Farm Bureau honors young farmers/ranchers

Dan and Mikki Hosman of Jonesboro (Craighead County) are winners of Arkansas Farm Bureau’s 2012 Young Farmers & Ranchers Achievement Award.

Dan and Mikki Hosman of Jonesboro (Craighead County) are winners of Arkansas Farm Bureau’s 2012 Young Farmers & Ranchers Achievement Award. Farm Bureau honored the couple Nov. 29 at its annual convention at the Hot Springs Convention Center.

Dan is a fifth-generation farmer who farms 11,000 acres of primarily rice, along with milo and soybeans, and runs a land leveling business. The business builds landfills, football and baseball fields, as well as commercial and residential projects.

The Hosmans have four sons, Cade, 14; Rhett, 10; Hudson, 7; and Wyn, 2.

“We primarily work on our own ground, developing farms for maximum production and efficiency,” Dan said. “Early in my career, I knew I had to not only have irrigated land but to efficiently maintain that irrigation. I’m constantly looking to improve drainage and irrigation.”

The Hosmans won a 2013 Chevy Silvarado 1500 crew cab, 4X4 LTZ pickup truck courtesy of Southern Farm Bureau Casualty Company.

The runners-up in the competition were Nick and Karen Steele, who raise poultry and cattle near Sulphur Rock (Independence County) and Scott and Cassie Davis of Prairie Grove (Washington County). Each couple won $1,000.

Cody Gray of Hempstead County won the YF&R Discussion Meet. Gray is an agriculture teacher in the Emerson-Taylor school system. The discussion meet provides a forum for young farm leaders to demonstrate their verbal and problem-solving presentation skills while they discuss their views on issues affecting agriculture. There were 17 competitors in the Discussion Meet.

Gray won a Kawasaki 550 Mule and the use of a new front-wheel assist Kubota tractor with a front-end loader for one year.

Honors also went to Caleb and Brianna Plyler of Hempstead County. The Plylers won the Excellence in Agriculture award. The award recognizes young farmers involved in agriculture but who get the majority of income off the farm.

Caleb, 32, and Brianna, 29, run a registered Charlaois and Angus beef cattle operation. Off the farm, Caleb is a vocational agriculture instructor at Blevins High School. Brianna is an x-ray technician at St. Michael’s Hospital in Texarkana.

The Plylers have a 2-year-old son, Huck.

Their prize is a John Deere Gator, courtesy of Western Arkansas Farm Credit, Ag Heritage Farm Credit, Farm Credit Mid-South and Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company. They also got a John Deere lawn tractor courtesy of John Deere Inc.

All winners also earned expense-paid trips to the American Farm Bureau Federation national conference in Nashville, Tenn., in January, where they’ll compete for national awards.

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