INDIANAPOLIS — At the Indiana Statehouse, Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch and Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) Director Don Lamb presented 56 farming families with a Hoosier Homestead Award in recognition of their commitment to Indiana agriculture.

One of those receiving the honor for their sesquicentennial was McSherry Farms Inc., Kosciusko County, which was established in 1838.

“It is a true honor to be in the historic Statehouse today celebrating your incredible family farming history,” said Lt. Gov. Crouch, Indiana’s Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development. “Your commitment to Indiana and our agriculture history and future is renowned. It was awe-inspiring to celebrate this family achievement with you all today.”

To be named a Hoosier Homestead, farms must be owned by the same family for more than 100 consecutive years, and consist of more than 20 acres. If less than 20 acres, the farm must produce more than $1,000 of agricultural products per year. Indiana farms may qualify for three honors: Centennial Award for 100 years of ownership, Sesquicentennial Award for 150 years of ownership and the Bicentennial Award for 200 years of ownership.

Since the program's inception in 1976, over 6,000 families have received the Hoosier Homestead Award. Many past awardees can be identified by the sign displayed in front of the family farm or field.

“Being a farmer myself I know how challenging it is to farm today in general, and to keep the same property in the family for decades on end, no less,” said Lamb. “This award being presented today to your farming families is proof of your dedication to agriculture, to our state and to feeding our world, so I thank you.”