An eighth-generation dairy farm in Mercer County was preserved by the Pennsylvania Agricultural Land Preservation Board Thursday. 

The Mark R. and Marie A. Canon farm, a 300.51-acre crop and livestock operation, was one of 47 farms, covering 3,561 acres across 21 counties, was one of 47 farms that were preserved.  

"Preserving farmland is a team effort among diverse groups united in our effort to spare the state's best agricultural soils from development," said Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding. "Together we help farmers to take an important step toward securing a future for their operations. This meeting is the culmination of an important chapter in the stories of 47 farm families from all corners of Pennsylvania."

The Canons modernized the farm in 2016 to include a robotic milking system and welcome schoolchildren to the farm to educate them on how food goes from the farm to the table and last year, Marie was named 2018 Outstanding Woman in Agriculture by the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau.

The Pennsylvania Agricultural Conservation Easement Purchase Program is dedicated to helping slow the loss of prime farmland to non-agricultural uses.

The Edward W. Nicol farm, a 143-acre crop and livestock operation in Lawrence County, was also preserved today.