Indiana’s Family of Farmers Invites You to the State Fair!

You may have met us at last year’s Indiana State Fair, where we, Indiana’s farmers, were identifying ourselves as members of the IN Crowd. However, we have decided that “Indiana’s Family of Farmers” better represents who we are and let’s you know exactly who you are hearing from. If you’d like to know more about us and keep in touch, visit us at on Facebook at For now, we want to be sure you know about all of the great things we are doing at this year’s great Indiana State Fair which runs until August 22!

Food for Thought Recipe Trail
Indiana’s Family of Farmers are hosting the Food for Thought Recipe Trail at the Indiana State Fair this year. You can collect recipe cards from all eight locations on the Recipe Trail around the Fairgrounds, (maps will be available), bring them to the final destination-the Food for Thought display at the FFA Pavilion and win a prize for just completing the trail (while supplies last). Then, register for the daily (whole ham giveaways) and grand prizes ($500 in free groceries (1) or sets of tickets (2) to see celebrity chefs, Eric Ripert and Anthony Bourdain live). For more specific information, visit Indiana Dairy’s Winners Drink Milk blog.


Culinary Opportunities
Be sure to check out the Dairy Bar, Pork Tents, and Beef Tents while you are at the Fair. These all feature products raised by Indiana farmers. Often, those same farmers will be serving the food in those tents too! Be sure to check out this year’s Signature Fair Food – the Garbage Burger – being served at all 3 of the Indiana Pork Tents!

Indiana Pork presents the Pig Art Gallery
Remember the cow statues in Chicago a few years ago? Indiana Pork and Sheridan-based JBS United are teaming up this year to present a gallery of Indiana pigs, artistically decorated to reflect unique themes in the Hoosier State. The gallery will also feature Harley, the official Indiana Pork pig who resides outside the Lt. Governor’s office at the Statehouse. They will be displayed in the Pioneer Our Land Pavilion.

ISDA Normandy Booth
Join Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) for family fun and information on how Indiana agriculture benefits every Hoosier, every day from the quality of your food, to the quality of your life, to ensuring a sustainable future for us all.

Wonder Trail sponsored by Indiana Farm Bureau
Kids can travel the Wonder Trail around the fairgrounds to learn about agriculture and earn a prize at the end.

Indiana Wine Council Booth
There will be information on Indiana’s 48 wineries and our Signature Wine and Grape, Traminette, in the Ag/Hort Building.  Award winning wine from the Indy International Wine Competition will be on display and folks can learn about the new Indiana Winery Guide free IPhone app!

Follow Me Barn Tours
Tours, which are sponsored by Indiana Farm Bureau, will leave the Farm Bureau Building daily and will rotate between the swine, cattle, sheep, poultry and horse barns. Tours are free and offer a unique opportunity for the whole family. To find out more or to register in advance, visit

And much, much more!

Check us out on Facebook at and on Twitter at!

Fill’er Up at the Only Drive-Thru Offering Breakfast & Biofuels

Join the Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) and detour over to the Indiana State Fair on Friday, Aug. 13 from 6–8 a.m. for the 15th Annual World’s Largest Drive-Thru Breakfast! With help from the Indiana Beef Council, the Indiana State Poultry Association, Milk Promotions Services of Indiana, and the Indiana Corn Marketing Council for just $3 you can receive a beef and egg burrito, coffee, juice or milk,  a fair ticket redeemable Monday, August 16 – Friday, August 20  and a gallon of E10, ethanol-blended fuel. E10 is compatible in any vehicle and is available to the first 400 cars compliments of CountryMark and Co-Alliance. Proceeds from the event go toward the 4-H Education Complex renovations on the Indiana State Fairgrounds. And in honor of the 2010 State Fair Year of Pigs, Governor Mitch Daniels is scheduled to pick up his breakfast on his motorcycle on his “hog” (aka Harley motorcycle) around 6:45 a.m. on his way to the State House.  

A few facts on the participating agriculture groups:


  • In Indiana, there are >19,000 premises registered for cattle production with a total 960,000 head of cattle.
  • Cattle production supports farm retail stores, pharmaceutical companies, equipment dealers and feed suppliers in almost every county in the state.
  • 29 cuts of beef labeled as lean by the USDA provide the #1 source for Protein, Zinc & Vitamin B12 in our diet.


  • Indiana’s poultry industry ranks 1st in the country for commercial duck production.
  • Indiana’s poultry industry ranks 2nd in the country for egg-type chicken hatching.
  • Indiana’s poultry industry ranks 3rd in the U.S. for egg layers (chickens that lay eggs) producing 6.4 billion eggs a year.
  • Indiana’s poultry industry ranks 6th in meat turkey production.
  • In 2008, Indiana’s poultry industry had a direct economic impact to our state’s economy of $1.3 trillion.


  • Indiana is ranked 2nd nationally in regular & low-fat ice cream production.
  • Milk offers a powerful package of calcium and 8 other essential nutrients for you & your family to enjoy for just pennies an ounce!
  • Milk & dairy products are among the most tested and regulated foods in the country.
  • In 2009, Indiana ranked 14th in milk production with 3.38 billion pounds of milk valued at $453.3 million.


  • Indiana is a national leader in renewable resources, including developing the next generation of ethanol.
  • Bioenergy is making a significant contribution to the Hoosier economy with current production in ethanol and its byproducts worth $1.3 billion at current prices.
  • There are now >130 E85 pumps dispensing 85% ethanol blended fuel throughout the state. To learn more about biofuels or to find out if your car is compatible with E85 visit

Win $500 in FREE Groceries at Indiana State Fair

Indiana’s Family of Farmers invites State Fairgoers to follow the Food for Thought Recipe Trail

Indianapolis — Indiana State Fair attendees are invited to follow the Food for Thought Recipe Trail presented by Indiana’s Family of Famers–and win! Collect recipe cards from all eight locations on the Recipe Trail around the Fair grounds, (maps will be available), bring them to the final destination—the Food for Thought display at the FFA Pavilion and win a prize for just completing the trail (while supplies last). Then, register for the daily and grand prizes.

In honor of the Year of Pigs theme at this year’s State Fair, the Recipe Trail will ham it up with daily ham giveaways. In addition, folks can register for three grand prizes of $500 in free groceries or sets of tickets to see celebrity chefs, Eric Ripert and Anthony Bourdain live at Clowes Memorial Hall on Sept. 30. Grand prizes will be awarded at the end of the State Fair.

Recipe card locations:

  1. Indiana Beef Council – Pioneer Our Land Pavilion
  2. Indiana Pork Producers – Pioneer Our Land Pavilion
  3. Indiana State Poultry Association –Pioneer Our Land Pavilion
  4. Milk Promotion Services of Indiana – Pioneer Our Land Pavilion
  5. Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) – Normandy Barn
  6. Indiana Farm Bureau – Farm Bureau Building
  7. Indiana Corn Marketing Council/ Indiana Soybean Alliance – Biofuels Mobile Learning Center
  8. Indiana Humanities Council’s Food for Thought Exhibit – FFA Pavilion


“Food impacts all of our lives every day. The partnership with the Indiana Humanities Council for the Food for Thought display has allowed us to be part of new conversations and events,” said Joe Kelsay, Indiana agriculture director for the Indiana State Department of Agriculture. “This has been a tremendous opportunity to share the perspective of Indiana farmers with consumers, talk directly through their personal experience and connect the dots between farms and the food that is grown in Indiana.”

The Food for Thought recipe cards will feature a recipe highlighting Indiana’s commodities such as pork, beef, poultry and dairy along with an Indiana wine pairing. On the flip side of the cards, State Fairgoers will meet a featured Indiana farmer and read a personal food story from their family.

“By taking our Food for Thought exhibit on the road to cities all over Indiana, we’ve engaged in great conversations with Hoosiers about the importance of food and agriculture to our state.” said Keira Amstutz, Indiana Humanities Council president and CEO. “We look forward to continuing the conversation with State Fairgoers about food culture, regional must-eats, family traditions and of course, Indiana’s Family of Farmers.”

Learn more about other Food for Thought events, recipes and additional information at

Indiana’s Family of Farmers was formed in 2009. Its purpose is to bring awareness to consumers on how Indiana agriculture benefits every Hoosier, every day-from the quality of their food, to the quality of their life, to ensuring a sustainable future for all of us. The participating Indiana’s Family of Farmers groups include the Indiana State Department of Agriculture, Indiana Soybean Alliance, Indiana Pork Producers, Indiana Beef Council, Milk Promotion Services of Indiana, Indiana Sheep Association, Indiana Corn Marketing Council, Indiana State Poultry Association, Indiana Horse Council, Indiana Wine Grape Council and Indiana Farm Bureau.


Last Year's Cheese Sculpture at the Indiana State Fair

“Who doesn’t love cheese!?” exclaimed Sarah Kaufmann, nationally renowned cheese sculptor. “And this will be a really BIG hunk of cheese!” More than 1500 pounds of Indiana-produced mild cheddar cheese, along with a few other favorites, such as Gouda and white cheddar, will be sculpted into an amazing work of art portraying the NFL and National Dairy Council’s in-school based program, Fuel Up to Play 60. Artist Sarah Kaufmann, one of only three known cheese carvers in the US, was commissioned for the fifth consecutive year by the American Dairy Association of Indiana (ADA) to create the sculpture, entitled Fuel Up to Play 60, encouraging the availability and consumption of nutrient-rich foods, along with 60 minutes of daily physical activity for all school-aged children.

On opening day, Kaufmann will begin carving two 640-pound blocks of mild cheddar cheese from Pace Dairy in Crawfordsville, IN into an amazing work of art that will measure an estimated 7 feet wide by 3.5 feet high. In just five days, this unique masterpiece will come to life with the image of Colts mascot, Blue, and buddy playing football on the turf at Lucas Oil Stadium with a crowd cheering them on in the background.

Once completed, the sculpture will remain in a large refrigerated case at the east end of the Pioneer Our Land Pavilion. Kaufmann, known nationwide as “The Cheese Lady,” is a Wisconsin native who now resides in suburban Cincinnati. She began sculpting cheese in 1995. Among her creations are a 10-pound Mozart violin, a 120-pound Mickey Mouse, a 640-pound Green Bay Packers player, and a six-foot long University of Florida Fighting Gator. At the 2006 Indiana State Fair, she was commissioned by ADA to create her largest sculpture ever: a 2334-pound work that depicted the fair’s rich 4-H and agricultural heritage in honor of the event’s 150th anniversary.

In 2007, Sarah created a sculpture celebrating the Indy 500 Victory Lane Bottle of Milk Tradition. In 2008, she commemorated the installation of the fair’s covered bridge. Last year’s sculpture saluted Indiana Dairy Farm Families and the hard work and dedication they provide for Hoosiers, Every Single Day.

Famous “celebrity heads” she has been commissioned to sculpt over the years include late night talk show hosts David Letterman and Jay Leno; racing legend (and 1969 Indy 500 champion) Mario Andretti; actor Paul Newman; TV journalist Katie Couric, and many others. The cheese sculpture will be on display in its refrigerated case throughout the run of the State Fair, which ends Sunday, August 22.

The dairy industry ranks as Indiana’s fourth largest agricultural concern. The American Dairy Association of Indiana, a not-for-profit organization representing the state’s dairy farmers, annually sponsors and operates the popular State Fair Dairy Bar located opposite the Coliseum between the fair’s administration building and the Grand Hall. The Dairy Bar menu offers a variety of items including thick, delicious milkshakes, grilled cheese sandwiches, ice cold white and chocolate milk, ice cream and frozen custard, fried mozzarella sticks, bagels, danish, breakfast biscuits with egg, sausage and cheese, and in honor of this year’s State Fair theme, the Chocolate Pig – making it the perfect spot for fairgoers to get their FDA-recommended 3-Every-Day of Dairy. The Dairy Bar is open throughout the fair from 8 am to 9 pm daily.

Chocolate Pigs Starring at the Indiana State Fair!

It’s hard to believe that today, August 6th, begins the Year of Pigs at the 2010 Great Indiana State Fair! From corn on the cob to corn dogs, elephant ears to chocolate pigs the fair offers everyone a day of fun, enjoyment, and a bit of nostalgia. Not to mention there is always that one new piece of excitement!

For the die-hard Dairy Bar diners you have enjoyed the Moose Tracks hand dipped ice cream, been amazed by the gooey elasticity of Indiana made Gouda grilled cheese sandwich, and this year — you’ll be raving over the chocolate pig.  Yes, as our tribute to the Year of Pigs the Dairy Bar has developed a custard dessert that is topped with crispy smoked bacon bits, crunchy roasted almonds, and rich chocolate syrup!  This custard dessert has something for everyone. It will excite all of your taste buds, and is for all ages.  Just ask for the Chocolate Pig and a great deal for $2.50!

There are other great nutritious food choices at the fair: roasted corn on the cob dipped in another dairy favorite, butter; Red Gold Tomato juice; Indiana Pork’s award winning Garbage Burger; and a Hoosier favorite from the Beef Cattleman’s Association, the ribeye steak sandwich.

However, I would be remised as a Dairy Bar fan if I didn’t tell you that the American Dairy Association of Indiana provides the best family meal value on the premise!  A 12-ounce glass of deliciously ice cold milk is only 50 cents!  Creamy and low-fat cottage cheese is also only 50 cents a serving.  Grilled cheese (everyone’s favorite) be it on white, wheat, or rye is a mere $2.50 each, and they are a healthy and tasty treat!  From fried mozzarella sticks with marinara, cups of yogurt, apple slices, milk shakes that require a spoon, and the best premium hand-dipped ice cream in six luscious flavors– there really is no place like the Dairy Bar during the Indiana State Fair! Can you think of an easier and tastier way to enjoy your 3-Every-Day of Dairy? I bet not!

See you at the Fair!

It’s the Year of Pigs… at the Indiana State Fair!

It’s that time of year again… The 2010 Indiana State Fair will be underway on August 6 and last until August 22. As always, there is a fair theme this year and that is the Year of Pigs! Pork is a $3 billion industry in Indiana which makes it the 5th largest producer of pork in the United States. Now that’s a lot of pork chops! Also, according to the USDA, 94% of Indiana 3,000 pork farms are family owned and operated.

So, as your looking for something to do this summer, bring your family to The Great Indiana State Fair for a day filled with fun activities, live entertainment, tasty treats, livestock shows, and much more! Gate admission is only $8 for general admission with children 5 & under being free. However, you can get an even better deal by purchasing discount tickets for $7 at all Indiana Walmart stores, CVS/pharmacy stores, Indiana Farm Bureau offices, The Marten House Hotel, and the Indiana State Fairgrounds Ticket Office.

While you’re at the fair, be sure to visit the Our Land Pavilion to see the giant cheese sculpture. Only a few individuals know what it will be or how much will it weigh, so don’t miss the unveiling on Wednesday, August 11, at 12:00 noon. Also in the Our Land Pavilion, Purdue University and Indiana agricultural commodity groups will have interactive exhibits, demonstrations, etc.

Three new exhibits will be at the fair this year. First, is “Bridges to Japan” which brings together traditional and contemporary Japan and the close ties it has with Indiana. Japanese performances, food, and displays will truly take visitors on a trip overseas. Second, is “God Bless America” which is a 25-foot sculpture of Grant Woods’ famous “American Gothic”. Last, but certainly not least, is the Habitat for Humanity Home. It’s a 5-bedroom home on the fairgrounds’ north side, and it will be there for the first 15 days of the fair.

If you want an even better deal than those mentioned before, bring your family to the fair for $2 Tuesdays Taste of the State Fair. On both Tuesdays (8/10 and 8/17), visitors will be admitted for just $2, compliments of Turkey Hill Dairy, but don’t forget to print the voucher from its website. There will also be numerous $2 deals for midway rides and food concessionaires… yum! In addition, you can purchase an ISF-Midway Combo Pass which includes State Fair admission and a Midway ride pass for only $25. They can be bought at all Indiana Walmart stores until August 8 for a savings of $8!

For a more inclusive list of events and deals, go to The Great Indiana State Fair website. We can’t wait to see you there!

It’s Time to Fire Up the Grill!

The sizzle of burgers and smell of smoke from ribs roasting slowly on the charcoal grill, or the flame from a marshmallow that got a bit too close to the embers are all great flavors and spectacles to enjoy during this great month of grilling! In case you weren’t aware, July is National Grilling Month… Mmmm!

Grilling is a sport of passion, and whether a novice or professional, weekender or life’s calling, grilling has some basic rules for a perfect return on time.  Burnt and charred is not the mantra you wish to hear, bark and mop are the preferred references.  But, before you get started on that perfect entrée, you may want to consider these suggestions for the type of grill to choose.  Don’t fret; cooking on the grill is really as simple as baking in the oven if you have a gas grill.  If you’re using charcoal, the indirect heat will give you more time to observe your food and not have a charred briquette.

What foods to begin with?  America’s favorite is the burger! Purchase fresh beef, turkey, bison or a combination, and then flavor it up!  Diced onion, Worcestershire sauce, and salt/pepper are a great start.  Shape the burgers into a ball and handle it as little as possible.  You want a juicy burger, not a hockey puck!  Burgers well up in the middle, so make a small dip in the center and cook about 7 minutes on one side.  DO NOT SMASH.  Flip and cook another 5-7 minutes on the second side until desired doneness.  Grab your favorite cheese, and add a couple of slices.  Be sure to allow it to melt before removing the burgers from the grill.  Then, place them on a platter for a few minutes with a piece of foil “tented” over the top to let the juices back into the meat!

Don’t stop at burgers!  Roasted vegetables, chicken stuffed with herb cheese and wrapped in bacon, breads with garlic herb butter, and dessert are also great on the grill!  Try making adult S’mores.  Take a slice of pound cake stuffed with chocolate and pecans.  Brush it with melted butter, and then grill it.  Last, serve it with fresh raspberries and ice cream or whipped topping. Yes, you can become a grilling pro and celebrate National Grilling Month on the patio with your family and friends.  Getting back to the table is so much easier when the smells lure them home!