Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) are announcing the launch of the third annual Florida Agriculture History & Creativity Award Essay Contest. The 500-word essay contest, originally established by Commissioner Fried in 2019, encourages Florida students in grades 4-12 to learn about hemp and the diverse commodities that can be made from it in an effort to create a more sustainable future for our state.

“Following the inception of the state’s hemp program in 2020, this newest Florida commodity has been leading the way in creating safe and sustainable products, furthering Florida’s rich agricultural history and the state’s second largest economic driver,” said Commissioner Fried. “Hemp has the potential for over 25,000 uses including textiles, biocomposite building materials, biodegradable packaging products, and food and medicinal products. We’re excited to see what innovative products Florida’s young minds will add to this list next, as we continue to keep Florida growing sustainably.”

The Florida Agriculture History Award essay contest will be open to all 4th through 12th graders enrolled in a Florida public or private school through May 20, 2022. Nine winners will receive a $1,000 Florida Prepaid 529 Scholarship, courtesy of Fresh From Florida, and be recognized at a Florida Cabinet meeting to be held at the Capitol Building in Tallahassee later this year. This contest is sponsored by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) and the Florida Prepaid College Board (FPCB). Students can learn more, find official contest rules, and enter by visiting