UPDATE: Yon Honored as Southeastern Farmer of the Year

(Since our chat with Commissioner Weathers, Kevin Yon has been named as the Southeastern Farmer of the Year at the Southeast Ag Expo in Moultrie, Georgia.)

Kevin Yon has been named the South Carolina Farmer of the Year and will represent the Palmetto State at the Sunbelt Ag Expo this week. Here’s Commissioner Hugh Weathers to tell more about Kevin Yon and his cattle operation.

  • This year’s winner is Kevin Yon from Ridge Spring and will be honored at the Expo in Moultrie, GA held October 16-18.
  • Yon Family Farms is a family-owned operation whose primary purpose is to raise high-quality Angus, SimAngus, and Ultrablack cattle.
  • The Yon family consists of Kevin and Lydia and their three children: Sally, Drake, and Corbin. Kevin is a first-generation Angus breeder who got his introduction into the cattle business at the age of twelve.
  • Kevin met his wife, Lydia, at Clemson University where they were both pursuing degrees in Animal Science.
  • After college, they got their feet wet as a couple in the cattle industry by landing their dream job of managing a registered Angus operation, Congaree Farms, near Columbia, SC.
  • The Yons took the plunge in 1996 and started their own Angus operation, Yon Family Farms in Ridge Spring, SC.
  • By this time, the Yons were the proud parents of three children under the age of six, who made the move with 100 head of Angus females that would become the family’s sole source of income to this day.
  • What began on 100 acres with additional leased land has evolved into an operation utilizing over 2000 acres, which maintains approximately 800 head of registered broodcows and 200 commercial cows.
  • The Yons will host both a Spring and Fall Production Sale where they sell around 400 registered bulls and 200 females each year. The Yons also retain ownership on commercial steers and heifers each year in a KS feedlot, where the cattle are sold on a value-based grid.
  • The Yons stress the importance of utilizing all the tools available. They develop three groups of sale bulls each year. Their operation is forage based and focuses on producing cattle for their customer base which is made up mainly of progressive commercial cattlemen.
  • Kevin has served as President of the SC Angus Association and as the Chairman of the SC Farm Bureau Beef Advisory Committee.
  • He recently served on the American Angus Association Board of Director. Currently he is President of the American Angus Association.
  • As the state winner of the award, Mr. Yon receives a cash award and an expense paid trip to the Sunbelt Expo from Swisher International.
  • South Carolina has had two overall winners, Ron Stephenson of Chester in 1994 and James Cooley of Chesnee in 2013.