Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann and Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director Ted McKinney recently presented 55 families with a Hoosier Homestead Award in recognition of their commitment to Indiana agriculture.
To be named a Hoosier Homestead, farms must be owned by the same family for at least 100 consecutive years and consist of more than 20 acres or produce more than $1,000 of agricultural products per year. The award distinctions are Centennial, Sesquicentennial, and Bicentennial.
"This program was established in 1976 to recognize the heritage of farming in Indiana and how Hoosier family farms have been passed down from generation to generation," Lt. Gov. Ellspermann said. "I salute our Hoosier farmers today for being part of both our state's legacy - but more importantly, a vital part of our state's future."
Annual recognition ceremonies are held in March during National Agriculture Month at the Indiana Statehouse and during the Indiana State Fair. The 55 families honored at the 2014 Indiana State Fair will join the 31 honored in March to total more than 5,000 Hoosier Homestead farms in the state.
"The families celebrated here today remind us of what makes Indiana agriculture great," Director McKinney said during the presentation. "Agriculture is not solely about producing food, fiber and fuel for a growing population. It is also about preserving a way of life that values hard-work, integrity and community. The Hoosier Homestead Award Program celebrates just that and ISDA is proud to oversee this awards program."
Thirty-nine counties were represented during the presentation: with 17 sesquicentennial, 36 centennial and two bicentennial. Bicentennial honorees were the Graves Family of Clark County and Emerson/Bratton Farm LLC of Gibson County, a truly great accomplishment.
See more information on the program and a list of all Hoosier Homesteads.