Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Charles H. Bronson has announced that two north Florida properties have qualified for recognition as a Century Pioneer Family Farm.

Recognition in this program means the families have maintained continuous ownership of the property for at least 100 years.

The families who qualified are Robert G. and Lovelle Pears Wilkerson of Westville in Holmes County, and Clifton and Gladys Shiver of Mayo in Lafayette County.

“These families have been able to retain ownership of their land through the depression, diseases, droughts, freezes and the urbanization of Florida,” Bronson said. “That is a great tribute to the many generations of these families.

The Wilkerson property is a beef cattle ranch, but was used for cotton and other row crop production in the past. The Shiver property is the home of Shiver Dairy but previously was used to produce watermelons, tobacco, hay, corn and cotton.

Since the program began 25 years ago, 137 family farms have received the Century Pioneer Farm designation. The program is administered by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services with assistance of the Florida Agricultural Museum.

For more information about the program or to apply for membership into the program contact Richard Gunnels at gunnelr@doacs.state.fl.us or call 850/488-3022.