Scott Travis, a 27-year farming veteran of Spencer County, was honored as the 2012 Kentucky Farm Bureau (KFB) “Farmer of the Year” during the organization’s 93rd annual meeting in Louisville.

Each year, KFB recognizes an individual whose efforts not only strengthen the state’s agriculture industry but also demonstrate service and leadership both on and off the farm.

Two Kentucky farmers were considered as finalists in this year’s competition. After a careful review of Travis’ detailed nomination form and an on-site visit to his farm, the judging committee agreed that Travis should be honored as the 2012 “Farmer of the Year.”

Finalist Stephen Bailey of Mercer County also had a strong showing and was awarded as this year’s runner-up.

Travis currently raises beef cattle, tobacco, corn, soybeans, wheat hay, pumpkins and gourds on his farm in Cox’s Creek.

Though he actually started farming at the age of six with his first tobacco crop, Travis pursued farming as a full-time career right after graduating from high school.

Since that time he has increased the overall size of his operation from the original 320 acres of rented land to its present-day 3,277 total acres. Travis’ wife, Robbie, and their three children help out as needed, too, making the operation a true family farm.

Over the years Travis has transitioned from running a farrow-to-finish hog operation, to raising large tracts of tobacco, to his current grain farming endeavors. Through all these changes, he has continued to seek out opportunities for developing and growing his operation.

As his farm has grown, Travis has also implemented additional and larger equipment that would increase his efficiencies with spring field work and, ultimately, boost crop yields.

Conservation practices remain one of Travis’ top priorities on the farm. Utilizing no-till farming methods, crop rotation, cover crops and conducting annual maintenance of the waterways on his property, Travis has made a conscious effort to prevent soil erosion and preserve the quality of the water, land and resources around him.

“In everything he does, Scott gives one hundred percent,” commented Scott Williams, president of Spencer County Farm Bureau.