Century & Bicentennial Farms Award

Schedule of Eligibility/Application Deadlines: Century Farms, Western NY- apply by 9/1/19, awards presented 1/20. Century Farms, Eastern NY- apply by 9/1/20, awards presented 1/21
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Seen above: The Danforth Jersey Farm – the 2019 Bicentennial Farm Award honoree awarded by the NYS Agricultural Society – has been making news since 1893 when the second generation won top butter honors at the Chicago World’s Fair. Today the sixth and seventh generation are still producing quality dairy products from their legacy Jersey herd. Bottom row L to R: Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, Prudence Danforth, Shannon Finn, Meadow Finn, Daisy Mason, Dave Peake, Kristie Matuszewski - award sponsor Farm Credit Northeast AgEnhancement, Elizabeth Claypoole – NYS Ag Society President. Top row L to R: Dan Finn, Augustus Mason, Brian Danforth. 2019 Century Farm winners included Dellavale Farm of Pattersonville, NY and Hand Melon Farm of Greenwich.

The Century Farm program is testament to the fine traditions of progressive agriculture and community service by farm families in New York State. The program began in 1937 and honors NY farms in continuous operation on the same land by the same family for 100 years or more. A limited number of deserving farm families are recognized annually by the Society. *For farms submitting applications, eligibility is determined by their respective anniversary date being before or on the date of the annual Forum.*

Eligibility for Century Farm Awards alternates annually between farms located in the Western and Eastern halves of the state.  (See application schedule below.)

(Bicentennial farms located throughout the entire state are eligible for awards every fifth year)

 Past Century Winners - 2019  Past Bicentennial Winners - 2019

Distinguished Service Citation Award

Application Deadline: September 1 each year
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From L to R: David Fisher – NY Farm Bureau President, Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, Jim Allen, Elizabeth Claypoole – NYS Agricultural Society President, and Dick Church – Distinguished Service Citation Committee Chair.

For over six decades, it has been the pleasure of the NYS Agricultural Society to award this high honor to an individual who has dedicated a lifetime of service, resulting in outstanding contributions to New York agriculture. 

"Cap" Creal Journalism Award

Application Deadline: September 1 each year
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From L to R: Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, Dennis Webster, Jason Detzel, Kathryn Brosnan – NY Beef Industry Council, and Elizabeth Claypoole – NYS Ag Society President.

For over 40 years, the historic NYS Agricultural Society has recognized well-written, informative, and timely news stories about agriculture in NYS. In 2019, six individuals were honored with the “Cap” Creal Journalism Award. Formats ranged from printed news story, editorial, audio/visual news clip, photography and blogs/online feature. 

"Cap" Creal Background - Download

Business of the Year Award

Application Deadline: September 1 each year
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Countryside Veterinary Clinic is the largest provider of veterinary services for pet owners, dairy/livestock farmers and horse owners throughout northern NY. They were honored with the 2019 Business of the Year Award. L to R: Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, Dr. Peter Ostrum, Dr. Stacy Kenyon, Dr. Craig Pauly, Elizabeth Claypoole – NYS Ag Society PresidentThe producer honoree was Brooklyn Grange located in the Brooklyn Naval Yard. Located on 2 rooftops in NYC, they grow over 50,000 pounds of organically cultivated produce per year and operate an apiary.

For over 17 years, the Society has presented Business of the Year honors to both a producer and an agribusiness, recognizing the quality, leadership and innovation they demonstrate that enhances the integrity of our industry. 

Ag Promotion Award

Application Deadline: September 1 each year
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For 21 years, the Wayne County Apple Tasting Tour has encouraged visitors to the region to sample quality apple products and visit local producers. The NYS Agricultural Society honored the program with the 2019 Ag Promotion Award. L to R: Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, Oru Rothfuss, Christine Worth, Joan Allen, Jeannette Kreher – Kreher Family Farms (sponsor), and Elizabeth Claypoole – NYS Agricultural Society President. Also honored with the 2019 Ag Promotion Award was Jeff Katris, of Indian Creek Farm, Ithaca, NY.

The Ag Promotion Award was launched in 2009 to recognize individuals and groups for their efforts to improve the understanding of agriculture in rural, suburban and urban communities of NYS. 

Farm Safety Award

Applications due September 1 each year
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Pedersen Farms, Inc. of Seneca Castle, NY received one of two 2019 Farm Safety Awards. The vegetable and grain operation employs 42 workers. Their philosophy is “safety first, work later.” L to R: Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, John Bradley, Rick Pedersen, Dick Peterson – Award Chair, and Elizabeth Claypoole – President, NYS Ag Society. Also awarded a 2019 Farm Safety Award was Hudson Valley Farm Hub of Hurley, NY.

Initiated in 2005, the NYS Agricultural Society's Farm Safety Award recognizes farm operators who have unique and successful farm safety programs that benefit their employees first and foremost. 

NYS FFA Chapter of the Year Award

Applications due September 1 each year
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The Pioneer Central School FFA Chapter received the 2019 NYS FFA Chapter of the Year honors for the second consecutive year. Bottom row, L to R: Stephen Coye – NYS Grange (Sponsor), Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, KristiAnn Frank, Stephanie Fyock, Danielle Herrick, Taylor Rollins, Anna Bica, Elizabeth Claypoole – NYS Ag Society President. Top row, L to R: Peyton Fontaine, Dylan Owens, Cameron Murphy, Mitchell Ling, Ethan Billman, Patrick Coombe.

FFA is among the largest youth organizations in the US. Founded in 1925, FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. It's the honor of the NYS Agricultural Society to recognize local chapters who are doing outstanding work to develop local youths and the communities where they reside.

There are three main criteria for awarding chapter of the year honors:
  1.  Growing leadership
  2.  Building communities
  3.  Strengthening agriculture
Chapters are required to complete basic information and describe program/project activities.

Next Generation Farmer Award

Applications due September 1 each year
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Rulfs Orchard of Peru, NY and Wild Brute Winery, LLC of Arkport were winners of the 2019 Next Generation Farmer Award. Rulfs is a long-time apple producer and has expanded under the leadership of third-generation sisters – Amanda Whisher and Shannon Wilkins. In addition to their landmark farm market, the business includes a flower shop, greenhouse, and café. Wild Brute Winery, LLC, is an artisanal winery operated by Justin Rechtenwald who has also launched “The Brute” – a wine bar and New American eatery. Based in Hornell, NY, the operation features his wines and other NY craft beverages. Front row L to R: Commissioner Richard Ball – NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets, Amanda Whisher, Shannon Wilkins, Elwyn Voss – The Voss Group (sponsor), and Elizabeth Claypoole – NYS Ag Society President. Top row, L to R: Daren Phillips – Next Generation Committee Chair, Justin Recktenwald.

The NYS Agricultural Society honors established producers and industry newcomers who are together farming in new and vibrant ways with the Next Generation Farmer Award. For NY agriculture to be successful long term, a next generation of innovative farmer is needed to work the land, plant crops, raise livestock and feed our global population.