Indiana Agriculture Insider

October 2016 Issue

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Bicentennial Torch Relay unites Indiana and agriculture

For 32 days, Hoosiers from all across the state came together to participate in the Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relaycelebrating Indiana's 200th Birthday and historic legacy. More than 2,200 torchbearers were nominated by their communities, and countless others, inspired by the relay, cheered on as the torch passed by their homes, businesses and fieldsAs the relay traversed the state, traveling over 3,200 miles, a common theme that was observed in all 92 counties was agriculture. 

Indiana Dairy Trail

Agriculture is the backbone of the Hoosier economy and has a major impact in every corner of the state, highlighted during the relay. In fact, on Oct. 4, the torch was ignited at MyBrook Farm in Middlebury, Ind. where industry and community leaders gathered to celebrate and later tour the dairy farm, owned by Mike and Judy Oesch. Click here to watch a video or here to view photos from the event.

Aside from kicking off the day’s torch relay, the event also served as the 12th and final stop of the Northern Indiana Dairy Trail, which was a series of open houses where dairy farmers were able to showcase their commitment to animal care, environmental stewardship and to their communities.


The torch made its final stop at the Indiana Statehouse during the Hoosier Homecoming Ceremony on Oct. 15th, where it was welcomed by Hoosiers of all ages. The torch now serves as an everlasting light for Indiana and illuminates in the Bicentennial Plaza.

To watch a documentary of the Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay, which will debut on Dec. 16, visit

National FFA Convention & Expo: Transforming Indianapolis

What does it take to transform Indianapolis? Over 60,000 students passionate about agriculture! Two weeks ago, a sea of blue and gold corduroy jackets descended upon Indianapolis for the 89th National FFA Convention & Expo. This was the convention's first year back in Indiana, and for students, it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and an experience they will never forget. 

Whether it was attending a general session, complete with elaborate sets, lighting and music, or competing for scholarships, National FFA Convention had something for everyone and had no shortage of things to do.

National FFA Convention

The four-day convention was also a great opportunity to recognize the accomplishments of many FFA members, and Indiana was well represented among the award recipients this year:

  • American FFA Degree: Over 107 Indiana FFA members received the American FFA Degree, which was awarded to those who have demonstrated the highest level of commitment to FFA and made significant accomplishments in their supervised agricultural experiences
  • Agricultural Proficiency Awards: This year, 41 Hoosier students received the Agricultural Proficiency Award, which honors FFA members who, through their SAEs, have developed specialized skills that they can apply toward their future careers.
  • National FFA Star Chapter Awards: Twenty Indiana FFA chapters received the National Chapter Award, which recognizes chapters that successfully complete an annual Program of Activities, including a series of activities designed to encourage its members to grow as individuals, to work as part of a team and to serve others.
  • American Star Awards: Riley A. Lewis, of the Prairie Heights FFA Chapter, was an American Star Award in Agricultural Placement Finalist, representing the best of the best among thousands of American FFA Degree recipients.
  • In addition to these awards, there were also many Agriscience Fair and State Chapter Award finalists.


Indiana FFA Degree

Congratulations to all of the Indiana FFA members who participated this year and for making the 89th National Convention & Expo a tremendous success. Visit to learn more about each award, as well as the convention.

Indiana Land Resources Council 101

In a joint effort by the Governor and ISDA, the Indiana Land Resources Council has been repopulated and is actively working to determine its long-term work priorites. But, what is the council and why was it created? What is its purpose?

Established by statute in 2008, the council is charged with collecting information and providing educational and technical assistance, as well as advice, to local governments regarding land use strategies and issues. It is made up of representatives from county and municipal governments, home building and land development, business, environmental interests, soil and water conservation districts, and forestry; in additional to, a land use expert and a farmer.

Barn and pasture

Although the council doesn't have any regulatory authority, it serves as a resource and make recommendations to help local and state decision-makers create and implement land use policies.

The previous council spent a great deal of time developing the model agricultural zoning ordinances, which have been adopted by some counties to assist in their comprehensive planning and zoning, as well as technical assistance guidance. The council is currently in the process of conducting listening sessions with a variety of groups, such as Purdue University, the American Planning Association, Indiana Farm Bureau and the Nature Conservancy, to gather information and start looking for its next project.

More information on the model zoning ordinances and other documents prepared by the council, visit

Featured in this Newsletter:

Bicentennial Torch Relay unites Indiana and agriculture

National FFA Convention: Transforming Indianapolis

Indiana Land Resources Council 101

Key Dates:

November 2
Indiana Land Resources Council meeting

November 8
Election Day - State Holiday

November 11
Veterans Day - State Holiday

November 24
Thanksgiving - State Holiday

November 25
Thanksgiving Holiday - State Holiday

Important Updates:

Temporary and Emergency Grain Storage
We would like to remind all licensed grain facilities that they can apply for temporary or emergency storage by contacting the Indiana Grain Buyers and Warehouse Licensing Agency. To make a request, or if you have any questions related to the matter, please call the agency at (317) 232-1360.

Livestock promotion and market development grants
We are now accepting applications for the livestock promotion and market development grants to foster growth within the Hoosier livestock industry. Applications are due by Dec. 1, 2016. All grant applications should be sent electronically to Kimmi Devaney at

ISDA in the News:

Indiana Welcomes FFA Convention Home

Soybean processor invests in Indiana port

Indiana Grown celebrates one year of promoting locally-made products

Meet Infield Advantage

ISDA Awards Clean Water Indiana Grants

Torch Relay Begins with a Toast of Milk

Cover crop success documented in Indiana this year - Farm Progress

Indiana Grown Sows Seeds For Future Milestones

ISDA livestock grant applications now available

ISDA Photos:

Director McKinney speaking at the National FFA Convention & Expo kick-off luncheon.
Monstanto Tour
Director McKinney taking a tour of the Remington DEKALB® Genetics Corp. facility in Remington.
Ted and Jerry
Director McKinney and Jerry Goshert after the Indiana Bicentennial Torch Relay kick-off event in Elkhart County.

Indiana Agritourism Destination of the Month: Piney Acres Farms in Fortville, Ind.

Piney Acres

Their 73-acre farm features fall fun for the entire family, including a pumpkin patch, corn mazes, hayrides, and more—open through Halloween. Haunted attractions (loft, corn maze, hay ride) are available Friday and Saturday evenings only. 

The Christmas season opens November 19th with a variety of trees and everything you need to trim your tree and deck the halls in their farm store. 

Indiana Grown Recipe of the Month: Pumpkin Bread

Pumpkin Bread

3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 cups packed brown sugar
2/3 cup white sugar
2 cups pumpkin puree
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup coconut milk
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 ½ tsps. ground cinnamon
Optional 1 cup toasted walnuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8x4 inch loaf pans.

In a large bowl combine the flour, brown sugar, white sugar, pumpkin puree, oil, coconut milk, baking soda, salt, ground nutmeg and ground cinnamon. Stir until all of the flour is mixed into the batter. Fold in the nuts, if desired. Pour batter into the prepared pans. Top with extra nuts.

Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and cover loaves with foil tightly. Allow to steam for 10 minutes. Remove foil and turn out onto a cooling rack. Tent lightly with the foil and allow to cool completely.

Contact ISDA:

Indiana State Department of Agriculture 
One North Capitol Avenue, Suite 600 
Indianapolis, IN 46204
317.232.1362 FAX