DNR does not track manure spreading on non-regulated farms

Wisconsin farmers are dealing with challenging conditions this spring, including a mid-April blizzard followed less than a week later by temperatures in the 50s and 60s.

Since farmers normally spread manure on fields once spring arrives, there has been some concern about how any spreading done before or after the blizzard may affect water quality and soil health. Last Friday, for example, manure from Mahr Brothers LLC Farm in Stanley spread on a field entered a pond and tributary to Hay Creek. The spill was contained and the Department of Natural Resources is still investigating.

According to the DNR, that agency and the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection do not have a way to track when and how much manure non-regulated farms – such as Mahr Brothers — may be spreading. That means the DNR is unaware if any manure from those fields ran off with the melting snow unless it is reported, said DNR spokesman Andrew Savagian.  Continue reading “DNR does not track manure spreading on non-regulated farms”

ADC: Blizzard-impacted farmers need to take action

In an effort to speed up potential relief efforts for farmers impacted by Wisconsin’s recent Blizzard Evelyn, the Wisconsin-based American Dairy Coalition (ADC) is asking those who sustained damage to contact their Farm Service Agency (FSA) office immediately.
Officials will quantify the damage reports and estimate the losses on a county-by-county basis. The totals will be provided to Gov. Scott Walker to use as the criteria for possible monetary assistance from state and/or federal resources.
“Time is of the essence,” said Laurie Fischer, ADC chief executive officer. “Whether they are facing collapsed structures, lost milk production, high insurance deductibles, animal losses or other situations, farmers need to get their damages on the record with their local FSA office. Just one phone call could have a big impact down the road.”

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Farm Technology Days looks to honor longtime attendees

WOOD COUNTY, Wis. — Wisconsin Farm Technology Days will be celebrating its 65th anniversary this year by recognizing people who have been to the most number of shows in the past. Committee members in Wood County, which is hosting the event July 10-12, 2018, will honor those individuals with a plaque during the opening ceremonies of the show in Tent City.

Awards will be given in two categories: General Public and Exhibitors/Media. Anyone who has been to at least 35 shows will be considered for recognition.

An application with a list of all the previous show dates can be found at www.wifarmtechnologydays.com. Entries are due on June 30.

Farm Technology Days will be held at D&B Sternweis Farms and Weber’s Farm Store/Heiman Holsteins, just west of Marshfield.

For more information, call 715-486-5226.

WI Milk Marketing Board adopts new name

The Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board has a new name – Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin (DFW). This initiative represents a new strategic mission, vision and identity more firmly aligning the efforts of Wisconsin’s dairy farmers to expand growth opportunities domestically and around the world.

“As the marketing and promotion arm for Wisconsin’s dairy farmers, this new identity puts the dairy farmers squarely at the center of what we do and provides a much stronger platform to share the Wisconsin dairy story,” said Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin CEO Chad Vincent. “Our organization exists to be tireless advocates for our dairy farmers, to help these family businesses thrive because they, and the fruits of their labor, are the heartbeat of the industry and our state.”

The Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin builds awareness of Wisconsin-produced dairy products by creating national publicity, managing digital advertising, and driving sales, distribution and trial through retail and foodservice promotions. It also supports in-school education about the benefits of dairy and funding for the UW Center for Dairy Research.

“The dairy industry is facing several challenges, including globalization of our markets, increased regulation and ongoing low prices for milk,” said Jeff Strassburg, board chair and a fifth-generation Wisconsin dairy farmer. “This change will put Wisconsin dairy farmers in a better position to help us grow and stay focused on the future.”

As a key economic engine of the state, the dairy industry contributes $43.4 billion annually to Wisconsin’s economy, generates tens of thousands of jobs and supports a variety of allied industries – as well as communities – throughout the state. Ninety percent of the milk in Wisconsin goes into making cheese, and 90 percent of that cheese is sold outside state lines, generating statewide income across multiple economic sectors. Through the partnership between farmers and dairy processors, the state has seen Wisconsin specialty cheese sales outpace the cheese category overall and per capita consumption of cheese more than double since 1983.

For more on the change, click here.


ADC assures farmers help is on the way

Scott Schroeder, Executive Director of the Western Iowa Dairy Alliance, addressed the crowd at Central Plains Dairy Expo 2018.


The American Dairy Coalition welcomed many dairy producers and allied industry businesses from several Midwestern states to an informative seminar held at last week’s Central Plains Dairy Expo in Sioux Falls, S.D. Presenters discussed important tools to help producers continue to sustain and grow their businesses well into the future.
This seminar, presented in partnership with South Dakota State Dairy Producers and Western Iowa Dairy Alliance, provided a unique opportunity for producers to ask questions and learn how a new bill will ensure a reliable workforce, as well as if the Margin Protection Program (MPP) can be salvaged.

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UW-River Falls student to help lead Ag Future of America

RIVER FALLS, Wis. — University of Wisconsin-River Falls junior Jared Retzlaff is one of only 10 students from across the nation selected to serve on the Student Advisory Team for Agriculture Future of America (AFA). AFA is a leadership and professional development organization for college students and young professionals.

Retzlaff, of Omro, is studying agricultural marketing communications and is active in the Agricultural and Business Marketing Society (ABMS) and Collegiate Farm Bureau. He served as the campus ambassador for AFA last year before being selected through a competitive application process to represent his peers at the national level on the advisory team.

A major component of the Student Advisory Team responsibilities is the planning and delivery of the 2018 AFA Leaders Conference to be held in November in Kansas City, Mo. More than 800 delegates from across the nation will be selected to attend.