The 2009 essay theme was "Farmers Looking at a Bright Future." Writers were instructed to consider the growing global demand for food and energy resources and then creatively describe how they envision farm life for future generations.
The focus of each essay was to be on the crops, research, machinery, techniques and jobs they anticipated would be part of agriculture's future. Essay writers were also asked to answer how could Hoosier farmers lead the industry in satisfying the growing demands and adapting to the changing landscape.
Hesselgrave and Littiken will now go on to compete at the district level for a chance to receive a $50 savings bond. State winners are chosen from those who win at the district level and will receive and all expenses paid trip to Washington, D.C. They received $25 from Putnam County Farm Bureau, Inc., for their winning essays.
Since 1985, Senator Richard Lugar and Indiana Farm Bureau, Inc. have joined forces to sponsor the youth essay contest for eighth grade students. The topic always focuses attention on the importance of Indiana agriculture while increasing the awareness of young Hoosiers about the significance of Indiana agriculture.