State agriculture officials reach milestone in preserving farmland

Written by Radio Pennsylvania | Aug 28, 2016 8:33 AM

(Lancaster) -- The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is marking a milestone, as the number of farms being preserved for agricultural use only, tops the five thousand mark. 

Smuckerland Farms, a 50 acre crop farm in Bird-In-Hand, Lancaster County, is one of 26 farms added to the preservation rolls.

That brings to 5-thousand, the number of farms to be preserved under a state program dating back to 1988.

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding was among those on hand to mark the milestone.

"We say thank you to the families.  It is a heart-felt thank you for what you have done and also what you have committed the future generations to do.  So we say thank you.  There is nothing important we can say than a simple thank you," Redding said.  

Pennsylvania leads the nation in farmland preservation, with  over one-point-3-billion dollars earmarked to ensure that more than half a million acres will be used solely for agricultural purposes.

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