FORT WAYNE, Ind. — Nick and Julie Wenning of Decatur County have been named the winners of Indiana Farm Bureau’s Young Farmer Excellence in Agriculture award.

The award gives recognition to young farmers who do not derive the majority of their income from an agricultural operation they own, but who are actively contributing and growing through their involvement in Farm Bureau and agriculture.

The Wennings have a traditional row crop operation with Nick’s father, brother and aunt, but with a twist: They raise freshwater shrimp.

Nick also owns Wenning Excavating and Drainage, a business that puts in roughly half a million feet of field tile every year, digs basements, installs septic systems and builds ponds and erosion control structures.

Julie is a high school math teacher and works part time in the excavation business. The couple also has three children.

The runners-up are Tom and Jamie Schilmiller of Floyd County and Chris and Marah Steele of Adams County.

The winner receives a John Deere Gator with an $8,000 cash value courtesy of Farm Credit Services; a $3,000 cash prize from Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance; and expenses paid to the 2014 national convention in San Antonio, Texas.

Runners-up receive $1,000 cash prizes from Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance.

Winners in this contest, as well as two other statewide contests, will advance to the national Young Farmer and Rancher contests, where they will compete against young farmers from across the country at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual meeting Jan. 12-15 in San Antonio.