1703 Badger Common'Tater

Page 1

Badger Common’Tater

March 2017



Volume 69 Number 3 $18.00/year $1.50/copy

HAMERSKI AND PAVELSKI Inducted into Hall of Fame UPDATE: HEALTHY GROWN Expands in Scope & Acreage POTATO INDUSTRY COMMITS $$ For Potato & Vegetable Research “DESTINATION EMPLOYERS” Recruit and Retain Good Help Potato plants are hilled at Gumz Muck Farms in Endeavor, Wisconsin.


Nick Somers

Plover River Farms, Inc.


HIGH STRENGTH STEEL DESIGNED FOR PERFORMANCE AND DURABILITY. Reinke’s single C-Channel Leg combined with Reinke’s wider tower base makes a smarter tower support design. Visit your local Reinke dealer today to learn why the Reinke single leg tower is a less intrusive structure, improving water application and causing less disturbance to taller crops.


Compare the Reinke C-Channel leg to competitors’ angle iron designs.


Roberts Irrigation • www.robertsirrigationWI.com 1500 Post Road | Plover WI 54467 | (715) 344-4747 | 2022 W. 2nd Avenue | Bloomer, WI 54724 | (715) 568-4600

Your MVP this season. Orondis® fungicide, with its unique, best-in-class active ingredient for controlling oomycete fungi, is on its way to achieving Most Valuable Product status. With a remarkably low use-rate, longer-lasting systemic activity and no cross-resistance, Orondis can help make your disease-management program an out-of-the-park home run. To learn more about how Orondis can be a real game changer when it comes to your vegetable, potato or tobacco crop, visit SyngentaCropProtection.com/Orondis.

©2016 Syngenta. Important: Always read and follow label instructions. Some crop protection products may not be registered for sale or use in all states or counties. Please check with your local extension service to ensure registration status. Orondis,® the Alliance Frame, the Purpose Icon and the Syngenta logo are trademarks of a Syngenta Group Company. MW 1ORO6003-8.25x10.75 03/16

Badger Common'Tater

On the Cover: An image submitted as part of the Healthy Grown feature in this issue, potato plants are hilled on Gumz Muck Farms in Endeavor, Wisconsin. Cassie Krebs, an administrative and marketing assistant for Gumz Muck Farms, says it’s one of Rod Gumz’s favorite images. Hilling potato plants in rows creates an ideal growing environment.

8 Badger cOMMON’TATER INTERVIEW: NICK SOMERS A steadfast advocate for the potato and vegetable growing industry, Nick Somers, shown here with his wife, Dianne, in front of the Plover River Farms Healthy Grown Potatoes sign, has been involved in as many activities and organizations, including the WPVGA, WPIB, NPC and Portage County Business Council, as just about anyone in the industry. Somers discusses his involvement, partnerships, farming operation, Healthy Grown, wetland restoration and the future of the industry.

Departments: ALI’S KITCHEN................... 65 AUXILIARY NEWS.............. 62 EYES ON ASSOCIATES....... 63





Industry Banquet features awards and HOF inductions

Growers see value in best environmental practices

34 NOW NEWs FFA attracts more women to agricultural careers, and Culver’s raises money to help

MARK YOUR CALENDAR..... 6 MARKETPLACE.................. 55 NEW PRODUCTS............... 50 NPC NEWS........................ 52 PEOPLE ............................ 59

Feature Articles:

PLANTING IDEAS................ 6

41 POTATO INDUSTRY COMMITS $5M for potato and vegetable research 48 BADGER BEAT: Inducing plant immunity—reducing PVY infection 56 “DESTINATION EMPLOYERS” attract and retain quality employees



BC�T March

SEED PIECE........................ 44 WPIB FOCUS..................... 54

Ask your ag retailer or agronomist about how your aglime stacks up. SuperCal 98G correctsis and How effective your maintains soil pH


Take the 98G CHALLENGE and find out!

SuperCal 98G is a pelletized lime Collectand an aglime sample. that corrects maintains soil pH. Consistent, proper soil pH maximizes a plant’sMail utilization of nutrients promoting the aglime samples. Postage is on us. good plant health. Receive your quality analysis and aglime stack, which shows the variation in aglime particle size.

98G corrects and maintains soil pH 98G is pelletized limestone and the most effective method to correct and maintain soil pH. Consistent, proper soil pH maximizes a plant’s utilization of nutrients promoting good plant health.

Request an aglime sample collection kit at calciumproducts.com/98gchallenge.

WPVGA Board of Directors: President: Eric Schroeder Vice President: Josh Mattek Secretary: Gary Wysocki Treasurer: Wes Meddaugh Directors: Mark Finnessy, Steve Diercks, Rod Gumz, Ron Krueger & Andy Wallendal Wisconsin Potato Industry Board: President: Heidi Alsum-Randall Vice President: Richard Okray Secretary: Bill Wysocki Treasurer: Keith Wolter Directors: John Bobek, Cliff Gagas, John T. Schroeder, Tom Wild & Andy Diercks WPVGA Associate Division Board of Directors: President: Sally Suprise Vice President: Casey Kedrowski Secretary: Cathy Schommer

Treasurer: Nick Laudenbach Directors: Paul Cieslewicz, Kenton Mehlberg, Zach Mykisen & Joel Zalewski Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association Board of Directors: President: Bill Guenthner Vice President: Charlie Mattek Secretary/Treasurer: J.D. Schroeder Directors: Jeff Fassbender, Dan Kakes & Eric Schroeder Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary Board of Directors: President: Paula Houlihan Vice President: Ali Carter Secretary/Treasurer: Gabrielle Okray Eck Directors: Kathy Bartsch, Deniell Bula, Marie Reid & Jody Baginski

Mission Statement of the WPVGA: “To assist WPVGA members to be successful through education, information, environmentally sound research, promotion, governmental action, and involvement.” Mission Statement of the WPVGA Associate Division: “Our mission is to work in partnership with the WPVGA as product and service providers to promote mutual industry viability by integrating technology and information resources.” Badger Common’Tater is published monthly at 700 Fifth Avenue, Antigo, Wisconsin 54409

WPVGA Staff Executive Director: Tamas Houlihan Managing Editor: Joe Kertzman Director of Promotions & Consumer Education: Dana Rady Financial Officer: Karen Rasmussen Executive Assistant: Julie Braun Program Assistant: Danielle Sorano Coordinator of Community Relations: Jim Zdroik Spudmobile Assistant: Doug Foemmel

WPVGA Office (715) 623-7683 • FAX: (715) 623-3176 E-mail: wpvga@wisconsinpotatoes.com Website: www.wisconsinpotatoes.com Like Us On Facebook: www.facebook.com/WPVGA

Subscription rates: $1.50/copy, $18.00/year; $30/2 years. Foreign subscription rates: $30/year; $50/2 years. Telephone: (715) 623-7683 Mailing address: P.O. Box 327, Antigo, Wisconsin 54409 Or, subscribe free online: http://wisconsinpotatoes.com/blog-news/subscribe/ ADVERTISING: To advertise your service or product in this magazine, call (715) 630-6213, or email: Joe Kertzman: jkertzman@wisconsinpotatoes.com. The editor welcomes manuscripts and pictures but accepts no responsibility for such material while in our hands. BC�T March


Mark Your

Calendar march 13-15 MIDWEST FOODSERVICE EXPO Wisconsin Center Milwaukee, WI 13-16 POTATOES USA ANNUAL MEETING Marriott City Center Denver, CO 28-30 WPS FARM SHOW (57th ANNUAL) EAA Grounds, 1001 Waukau Ave. Oshkosh, WI


june 13-15 UNITED FRESH 2017 CONFERENCE & EXPO West Hall, McCormick Place Chicago, IL 17 FEED MY STARVING CHILDREN MOBILEPACK EVENT Noel Hangar Stevens Point, WI 23 SPUD SEED CLASSIC WSPIA GOLF OUTING Bass Lake Golf Course Deerbrook, WI Contact Karen Rasmussen, krasmussen@wisconsinpotatoes.com or 715-623-7683 to reserve space and/or sponsor the event

july 12 ASSOCIATE DIV. PUTT-TATO OPEN GOLF OUTING Lake Arrowhead Golf Course Nekoosa, WI 16-18 PMANA (POTATO MARKETING ASSOC. OF NORTH AMERICA) MEETING Wisconsin Dells 20 HARS FIELD DAY Hancock, WI 27 ANTIGO FIELD DAY Langlade County Airport Antigo, WI

august 3-13 WISCONSIN STATE FAIR Milwaukee, WI


Planting Ideas Agriculture is big business, not only in Wisconsin, but across the country, a fact that is not lost on local, state and national leaders. The WPVGA and UW-Extension combined to hold the 68th Annual Industry Show in conjunction with the Grower Education Conference, February 7-9, at the Holiday Inn & Convention Center in Stevens Point. Shown in the accompanying image is newly elected Wisconsin Sen. Patrick Testin (left) discussing agricultural issues with Jeff Somers of Wysocki Produce Farm (center) and Andy Diercks, Coloma Farms (right). Sen. Testin (R-WI) joined potato and vegetable growers and associates for lunch during the Industry Show, February 7, and sat next to former State Sen. Julie Lassa (D-WI). Attorney Jordan Lamb addressed the lunch crowd, updating them on legislative issues that affect the industry, such as water use and high-capacity wells, a timeline for the abatement of late blight of potatoes, seed potato certification requirements, state infrastructure and more. These are real issues affecting real people and big businesses. Wisconsin ranked third in the nation in potato production in 2016 with an estimate of 26,230,000 cwt. Wisconsin potato growers harvested 61,000 acres and had an average yield of 430 cwt./acre. The state ranked second in the nation in harvested acreage and value of processing vegetables. Wisconsin leads the nation in production of snap beans, beets for canning and cabbage for sauerkraut. The state ranks second in carrots and third in sweet corn and peas (for processing) as well as cucumbers for pickles. It comes as no surprise that leaders of our state and country (including presidents of the National Potato Council, Potatoes USA and United Potato Growers of America) traveled to the 2017 Grower Education Conference & Industry Show. See complete coverage of the event in this issue. Of course, no one is more dedicated to their cause than the growers themselves, and the potato industry recently committed $5 million to support potato and vegetable research, citing that the University of Wisconsin research team and related facilities are proven assets to the entire industry. For more information, see the related feature article. Please email me with your thoughts and questions. If you wish to be notified when our free online magazine is available monthly, here is the subscriber link: http://wisconsinpotatoes.com/blog-news/subscribe.

Joe Kertzman Managing Editor jkertzman@wisconsinpotatoes.com


Red Norlands Dark Red Norlands Red Endeavor

WHITES Atlantics Snowdens Superiors Pikes Mega Chip Lamoka


Russet Burbanks Goldrush Silverton Tx296 Norkotah Russet Norkotah Co8 N1435 Cty Rd D Antigo, WI (715) 623-2689 farm@sbfi.biz johnt@sbfi.biz

Foundation & Certified Seed Potatoes


Nick Somers, Plover River Farms, Inc. By Joe Kertzman, Managing Editor

NAME: Nickolas A. “Nick” Somers TITLE: President COMPANY: Plover River Farms Alliance, Inc. LOCATION: Stevens Point area, WI HOMETOWN: Stevens Point/Custer, WI YEARS IN PRESENT POSITION: “All my life,” incorporating business as a family farm in 1968

From the very beginning, farming has been a family affair for Nick Somers of Plover River Farms, Inc. Having lived on a farm since he was five months old, it is “in his blood,” as they say. He has devoted his entire life to potato and vegetable growing, and has been a steadfast advocate for the industry.

Nick is a recognized and unwavering voice behind such practices as sustainable and eco-friendly farming, as well as the Wisconsin Healthy Grown program, including prairie restoration and organic farming on portions of his own land.

SCHOOLING: UW-Stevens Point ACTIVITIES/ORGANIZATIONS: Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) Board and committee member, and Board President (1977’78); Wisconsin Potato Industry Board Chairman (1987-’90); National Potato Council (NPC) Board of Directors, VicePresident and President (1998); Portage County Business Council Board; WPVGA Water Task Force Co-Chairman and many other committees. Supporter of many organizations, including the Boys and Girls Club of Portage County and United Way, and has conducted several experimental and trial projects with the UW-Madison Extension 8

BC�T March

AWARDS/HONORS: NPC Gold Potato Award, Man of the Year and Environmental Stewardship Award; Portage County Farmer of the Year (1980s); WPVGA Integrated Pest Management Achievement Award, Volunteer of the Year, Agri-Communicator of the Year and Industry Appreciation Award; and Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service Certificate of Appreciation Award FAMILY: Wife, Dianne; son, Doug; daughter, Heidi Somers-Foote; son-in-law, Mike Foote; and granddaughters, Amelia (7) and Leanna (5) Foote HOBBIES: Travel, photography, sports, golf and biking

From his lists (see bio) of organizational activities, board positions, and awards and honors, what’s been obvious to his fellow growers for many years also becomes apparent to anyone paying attention—Nick has spent a lifetime invested in and devoted to the potato and vegetable growing industry. I understand you are a thirdgeneration grower and the only one in the family still farming. Can you give me a little history Above: Showing off his multi-tasking skills, Nick Somers mugs for the camera as he digs and checks potatoes at Plover River Farms in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.

of your farm? When I was five months old, my father died suddenly of a heart attack. My Mother, Ann Somers, brought my 3-year-old sister and me to her home farm where she teamed up with her brother, Don Cychosz, to make a life for us. From the beginning, they raised mink, farmed dairy cattle and grew handpicked green beans, strawberries and eventually potatoes, the latter of which became very promising with the development of irrigation. Being a very progressive person, my uncle Don was one of the first in the area to buy a pivot irrigation system. In 1968, I joined him and my mother to form Plover River Farms, Inc. I have much to owe to my mother and uncle for this opportunity. It was at that time I married my wife, Dianne, and started a family. How many acres do you farm in potatoes and other vegetables under the Plover River Farms umbrella? Slowly land became available and our farm grew to the present 3,500 acres, of which 1,100 acres are in potatoes, 1,000 in sweet corn, 400 in green peas and the remainder in soybeans and alfalfa. Do you have partnerships with other growers? In the beginning, we packaged our potatoes, but in the 1970s, as consumer needs became more sophisticated, we joined our neighboring farm, Wysocki Produce Farm, to form a more efficient packaging shed that could meet their demands. The business was called Paragon Potato Farms, Inc., in Ellis, Wisconsin. It consisted of three brothers, Louis, Francis, and Greg Wysocki, and myself. The facility grew and expanded, but in 1999 a huge fire burnt it down. It was at that time we moved to Bancroft, and it has since become one of the most progressive packing sheds in the Midwest. On January 6, 2009, the ownership

of Paragon Potato Farms Inc. entered a joint venture with CSS Farms to form Tasteful Selections, a farming enterprise and packaging facility in Bakersfield, California. Their focus is on small potatoes and fingerlings. Tasteful Selections has expanded and incorporates watermelons, garlic and carrots into its rotation plans. This has been a very exciting business because the consumer is looking for new potato products that are easy and fast to prepare in their busy lifestyles. Small potatoes fit into that menu. Do you have multiple locations/ fields, and in what towns? We are very fortunate to have all our farmland located within a 50-mile radius that includes four townships,

Above: Amid a dense, leafy canopy of potato plants, Nick Somers chops vines for the early red potato market on Plover River Farms.

all in Portage County. That helps us to be more efficient. How many people does Plover River Farms employ? Plover River Farms has nine great full-time employees, and seasonally another 10-40 for planting and harvest. Because of their dedication, I am able to get away for a few weeks here and there throughout the year. They are always there when needed, and I can’t thank them enough. What are the most enjoyable and fulfilling aspects of potato and vegetable growing for you? I really continued on pg. 10

Spray Foam Insulation & Roofing Specializing in potato & vegetable storage facilities for over 40 years. 715-424-4200 • 4111 8th Street South • Wisconsin Rapids WI, 54494 www.fencilurethane.com BC�T March


average year.

like to watch the crops grow. I am always so excited for spring to arrive, to plant, to see the first sprout appear, the first tubers appear, the plant growth of summer and the challenge of harvest. It is a cycle I never tire of. I also like working with the staff, how they come up with problem solving and getting through difficult challenges. How was the 2016 growing season, and how does it compare to past years? 2016 had the potential of being a great crop until the fall rains came during harvest. That made it an



N7158 6TH DRIVE P.O. BOX 215 PLAINFIELD, WI 54966 OFFICE: (715) 335-6660 FAX: (715) 335-6661





How has the farming operation changed over the years? What’s different today from when you first started farming? Agriculture has changed from intensive manual labor to technical savvy know-how. There are also so many elements in farming today that one needs to be knowledgeable about or have staff that can take that responsibility—cost of production, agronomy, mechanics, human resources, supervision, contract negotiation, crop scouting, machine operation, etc.







10 BC�T March

It has become very complex and challenging to manage all these functions and responsibilities. It is not simple anymore. How has technology played a role, and has it helped? Technology has made farming less brawn and more brain. Tractors that steer themselves are commonplace. Cell phones stop, start and monitor irrigation equipment. It’s not unusual to have four computers in a tractor cab. We feel we are more accurate in how we farm, using the land more efficiently, using less inputs, using machinery more wisely, but it is more challenging. Our farm employees have had to learn how to operate all this sophisticated equipment that monitors almost everything we do. I understand you’re a Healthy Grown grower. What does that mean to you and why is it important? I have been a Healthy Grown grower since its inception. In the 1980s, I gave a speech at the NPC convention on how we, the NPC, work with the Environmental Protection Agency. Following it, the University of Wisconsin introduced its new Left: From all appearances, Nick Somers is pleased with his load of russet potatoes that are ready to be taken to the storage shed at Plover River Farms. Right: Early reds are graded at the Frontier Packing Shed in Bancroft, Wisconsin. When the photo was taken, it was part of Paramount Farms, but Paragon Potato Farms currently owns the facility.

software program, Wisdom. The director of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) heard the presentations and approached Wisconsin as to how we could collaborate with each other. Thus, we began a partnership with Healthy Grown. We formed a committee that set standards for reducing pesticide inputs, using softer chemicals and encouraging better farming practices that would make us more environmentally sustainable. The WWF was so excited about the direction we were going that they let us put their panda logo on the consumer bags. Healthy Grown is a concept that makes us more aware of the environment in our farming practices. It’s important because it makes us more sustainable, and I will continue to be involved with the program. I also understand you have returned portions of your farm to wetlands continued on pg. 12

Above: Proud parents and grandparents, Nick and Dianne Somers (front and center) are surrounded by, back row, left to right, their son-in-law, Mike Foote, daughter, Heidi Somers-Foote and son, Douglas Somers, and front row, left to right, granddaughters, Amelia and Leanna Foote.

e Drive 31 Maple Drive 54467

over, WI 54467

-3401 5-344-3401

eeToll Free




New Equipment


RCO 48”x12’ Barrel Washer


4-Row Gallenberg Harvester

New RCO Barrel Washer

Used Equipment 30” Double L Piler


Used Equipment:

DAVCO 72” Sizer


20’ Logan Bulk Bed with EZ-Tarp


Two Spudnik 9040 Hillers with Props

$7,500 EACH

Wil-Rich 12-Row 30” Row Crop Cultivator


Spudnik 1250 60’ Telescoping Conveyor





48”x12” with infeed elevator and recirculating pump and tanks

with Lenco 65” Air Head. 34” row spacing.

Used Davco 72” Sizer

2000 Spudnik 5140

72” Davco Eliminator Sizer with 2 stingers & swing boom, porcupine belt with fan, 9A, picking table

4-row, 36” windrower (left-hand return)


NEW! Big Iron’s groundbreaking cryogenic


increases the wear resistance and durability of your metal and plastic equipment and parts while also relieving residual stresses. Call us at (715) 345-7039.




Salford Farm Machinery, Inc.



Mulchers Rock Crushers

Check out our used equipment at www.bigironequipment.com

2731 Maple Drive • Plover, WI 54467 • 715-344-3401 • Toll Free: 1-888-696-4019 BC�T March 11

Interview. . . continued from pg. 11

and prairie. Why is this something you wanted to accomplish and how many acres have you dedicated to natural growth? We have a natural native wetland on our farm that we have continued to protect. Over the past 10 years we started around 30 acres of prairies, located throughout the farm. It’s amazing how many bees and butterflies are attracted to these areas. How many acres of certified organic potatoes do you grow and why? We got into growing certified organic when a nearby landowner had organic land for rent about five years ago. It was like going back in time and it brought back memories of the way we used to farm.

It has been a challenge, but we are learning and getting better at it, improving quality and yield. We grew 40 acres of potatoes organically this year, along with sweet corn, soybeans and alfalfa. Next year we will have 320 certified organic acres. Are you growing potatoes mostly for the fresh market, chip market, others? About a third of our potato production goes to McCain Foods for processing and the other two-thirds goes through the Paragon packaging facility to the fresh market. I see you are and have been a member and on the boards of several WPVGA committees, currently the Water Task Force, Government Relations Committee,

Promotions & Consumer Education and the Research Committee. Why is it important to you to be involved? It is extremely important to be involved in our industry for the future of our businesses. I have been active in the NPC and in the WPVGA and currently I am Co-Chairperson of the Water Task Force. If we don’t speak up and present our facts, who will? Agriculture is in a small minority of our population. Most people have never been on a farm and don’t understand our needs and concerns. We need to speak up for ourselves, otherwise we will become burdened with the unnecessary controls that are put on us by those who are uninformed. I am very proud of what the Water Task Force has accomplished. It finds solutions to water concerns through continued on pg. 14 Above: A crew conducts an annual burn on one of the Plover River Farms prairies in the spring to rejuvenate it with new growth, awakening and bringing up seeds that lay dormant. The resulting flowering Healthy Grown prairie is ecologically restored. Above Right: Nick Somers explains to a visiting television station crew how GPS technology helps growers employ more sustainable farming practices.

12 BC�T March


Supplier for − • PureGradeÂŽ Liquid Fertilizer • Bio-Gro humic and fulvic acid products • HiQual-Solution Fertilizer Compounds • Chemical Sales & Custom Application • Hi Leverage Crop Fertility Recommendations

“Your Farming Success is Our Meat & Potatoes�

PureGrade In-furrow Liquid Starters and Foliar Plant Food The Andersons

Low-salt plant food high in orthophosphates especially formulated for in-furrow placement and foliar application. C

• 7-25-5 GoldStart 0 '$ + )+ • 9-18-9 GoldStart 0 '$ + )+ • 5-15-15 GoldStart 0 '$ + )+ • 6-24-6 GoldStart 0 '$ + )+

• 3-18-18 GoldStart 0 '$ + )+ • 10-10-10 GoldStart 0 '$ + )+ • Chelated Micronutrient 0 '$ + )+ • 17-0-4-7 0 " $ + # )'&,+)# &+

• Custom Mixes 0

• 20-0-0-8 Nitro-S 0 ,*+'% #- * • 0-0-30 Pot Carb 0 #+)' 0 '+ )

CPS Great Lakes 5053 Co,&+. *+ ' 0 $ *+'&

) ) &! ) $$

0 /

0 % #$ % ) % ) &! ) (* !, '%

Interview. . . continued from pg. 12

science, not emotion. The committee has also formed a stewardship program with the Department of Natural Resources where we are developing a point system of practical methods to conserve water. Even many small practices can save water. I believe we must be proactive to protect farming for the future. Our marketing endeavors have become very important to the potato and vegetable industry. The Spudmobile, the new mascot, Spudly, the triathlons and the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP) Spud Bowl are opportunities to promote our products and agriculture. They give us the chance to rub shoulders with the community, talk to people and show them that we care and are passionate about being good stewards of the earth. The Spudmobile, which is on the road almost daily, reaches a vast number of people through events, including children via visits to schools, educating them about potatoes and vegetables. Current Page: When you have a lot of acres, you need a lot of high-tech tractors, and that’s what Nick Somers got when he purchased four 8R’s, one 9R and one 9RT high-performance John Deere tractors from Faivre Implement in 2012. Nick is shown (center) in the close-up image flanked by four of his crew members in front of one of the tractors. Photos courtesy of Ruth Faivre. 14 BC�T March

At the Spud Bowl, we hand out free baked potatoes and fries and present five scholarships to students attending UWSP who come from rural areas. This good will is invaluable to the industry. We must all support these programs for the future of our industry.

Why is potato farming in Central Wisconsin so important and dear to you? I grew up in Central Wisconsin and love it here. I love the people and the community. It is a very special place to live. It is one of the most ideal places to farm because of our abundance of water and our sandy soil.

If you had to choose the number one thing you’d like readers to know about Plover River Farms, what would it be? Plover River Farms is a team. We all work hard and care about each other. My wife, Dianne, and I are grateful for their dedication. What do you think the future holds for not only Plover River Farms, but also for potato and vegetable growing in general? I believe the future looks very exciting. Technology is moving at a faster pace than we can absorb and sometimes understand. We must always move forward, otherwise we will get behind. It will be interesting to see where the future takes us. Do you have anything you’d like to add, Nick? I think agriculture is a very rewarding career, and Dianne and I are so grateful for all the opportunities and for all the friendships we have had because of this very special industry.

Above: From left to right in front of the Spudmobile, Paula Houlihan, president of the Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary Board, Nick Somers and WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan offer potato samples to fans, such as the gentleman at right, attending a Green Bay Packers game.

YOuR TRUSTED AdvISOR WISCONSIN OFFICES Antigo ............................ 800.324.5755 Marshfield .................... 800.324.5752 Medford ........................ 800.324.5753 Stevens Point .............. 800.324.5754 Thorp ............................. 800.324.5758 Wausau .......................... 800.324.5751

DEVOTED TO YOUR SUCCESS Specializing In: • Operating, Livestock & Machinery Loans • Hail & Multi Peril Crop Insurance • Recordkeeping Services • Real Estate Financing • Tax Preparation Equal Opportunity Lender, Provider & Employer

www.unitedfcs.com BC�T March 15

68th Annual WPVGA Industry Show Lives Up to Stellar Reputation

2017 UW Extension & WPVGA Grower Education Conference well attended and information packed By Joe Kertzman, Managing Editor Just driving up to the 2017 Grower Education Conference & Industry Show, February 7-9 in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, was impressive, with trucks, tractors, harvesters and implements lined up in the parking lot for visitors to view and even kick some tires if they had the urge. The Industry Show marked its 68th successful year, with exhibitors and industry attendees not only packing the show hall, but spilling out into

hallways in front of the main exhibit area and adjacent to the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) registration booth. Familiar faces and strangers alike caught up on business and personal lives while booth holders showed off their newest products, innovations and services. Technology in farming is nothing new, but the electronic, driverless, drone and data services

Top: George Neuber, equipment operator at the University of Wisconsin Lelah Starks Elite Foundation Seed Potato Farm, holds court with attendees at the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program booth. Left: Exhibitor Steve Rosenthal (left) of TH Agri-Chemicals, Inc. mans the booth and chats with seed potato grower Adam Bula (right) during the 2017 Industry Show. Bottom: “Testing Today for a Better Tomorrow” were Anna Lubinski (left) and Chuck Bolte (right) of AgSource Laboratories during the 2017 Industry Show in Stevens Point. 16 BC�T March

Super Poly Tanks from AG Systems

Vertical Tanks: 16 Gallons to 16,000 Gallons

Cone Tanks: 70 Gallons to 12,000 Gallons • Tanks come standard with total drain bolted fitting • Conical bottom with flat spot for total drainage

• UV inhibitors molded in for longer tank life

• Easy to read molded in gallonage indicators • 2” or 3” outlets available on larger tanks • Siphon tubes to help with drainage

• 18” lid is standard on all large tanks • Molded in tie down lugs

• 3 - Year warranty from date of shipment

• Engineered welded steel stand available • 3 - Year warranty from date of shipment

• UV inhibitors molded in for longer tank life

• 18” lid is standard on all large tanks • Molded in tie down lugs for securing tanks

Don’t forget to pick up your Pumps, fittings, accessories and hose from Ag Systems. www.agsystemsonline.com

are, and they were all showcased at the show.

Executive Director Tamas Houlihan.

Above: Attorney Jordan Lamb addresses the lunch crowd gathered Tuesday, February 7, during the Industry Show, updating them on legislative issues that affect the potato and vegetable growing industry. In attendance were, at far left and far right, growers Andy and Steve Diercks of Coloma Farms, and between them, from left to right, WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan (front), Sen. Patrick Testin (R-WI) and former State Sen. Julie Lassa (D-WI). $95,000

Water use and conservation and The University of Wisconsin groundwater issues were hot Extension did its part, hosting a slew button topics, as were potato of sessions and presentations as part viruses, remote sensing, pesticides, of the Grower Education Conference, managing soil microbiomes, PULL TYPE SPREADERS, HIGH CLEARANCE SPREADER which kicked off Tuesday, February continued on pg. 18 CASE remarks IH 3200B 7, 2002 with opening by WPVGA W/NEW LEADER L2000G4 SPINNER BOX 5662 HOURS, 380/90R46 TIRES, CHASSIS SANDBLASTED & PAINTED, RAVEN VIPER PRO,SPINNER SPEED CONTROL






2011 AGCO 1396Super

Poly Tanks from AG 380 Systems 2,584 HOURS, 1,300 GALLON SS TANK, 90’ BOOMS, VIPER PRO, ACCUBOOM, TIRES, CHEM EDUCTOR, NICE MACHINE 2011 John Deere 4830

$129,000 $119,500




2008 AGCO 1074SS


2000 AGCO 1254


2,419 HOURS, 1,000 GALLON SS TANK, 380/90R46 TIRES, 90’ BOOM, RAVEN 5000, CHEMICAL INDUCTOR, FOAMER 4010 HOURS, 1,200 GALLON SS TANK, 90’ BOOM, 380/90R46 TIRES, RAVEN 661, FOAM MARKER Vertical Tanks: 16 Gallons to 16,000 Gallons

Cone Tanks: 70 Gallons to 12,000 Gallons


• Tanks come standard with total drain bolted fitting $149,500 • UV inhibitors molded in for longer tank life 2012 AGCO 8300 • Conical bottom with VIPER flat spot forSMARTTRAX total drainage • Easy to read molded in gallonage indicators AIR MAX 1000, 70’ BOOM, 2,165 HOURS, CVT TRANSMISSION, 1050/50R25 TIRES 75%, FOAM MARKER, RAVEN PRO, & RGL600 LIGHTBAR • 18” lid is standard on all large tanks or 3” outlets available on larger tanks 2011 CASE IH• 2”3520 $155,000 • Molded in tie down lugs tubes to AIR, help70’ with drainage 2049 HOURS, 1050/R25• Siphon TIRES, 810 FLEX BOOMS, RAVEN VIPER PRO & SMARTTRAX STEERING. TOP DRESS - High clearance tires & adjustable axles • UV inhibitors molded in for longer tank life lid is standard on all large tanks 2007 CASE IH• 18” 4020 $79,500 available INSERT, ROLL TARP • Molded in tie down lugs for securing WITH 14’NEW BOX 7,272 HOURS, VIPERtanks PRO, PHOENIX 200, 54”• Engineered FRONT & 66”welded REAR steel TIRES,stand 5’ MULTIPLIER THROW FARLEADER - 120 ftL3220G4 driving interval with urea VALMAR • 3 - Year warranty from date of shipment • 3 - Year warranty from date of shipment 2008 AGCO 8244 $70,000 BBI SPREADERS APPLICATION GO LONG - 282 cu/ft struck capacity


12054” FTfittings, DRIVING INTERVAL WITH UREA WITH AIR SPREADER 2,854 HOURS, PRO, FRONT &accessories 1050 REAR TIRES, CAT ENGINE, MARKER, 70’BOOMS Don’t forgetVIPER to pick upSLINGSHOT, your Pumps, and hose from AgFOAM Systems.




4180 ReaRdon Rd., ag systems, deFoRest WI 53532


4180 Reardon Rd., DeForest, WI 53532-2759 608.846.9064 • 800.523.2350

800-523-2350 USED EQUIPMENT



2002 CASE IH 3200B

BC�T March 17


2017 Industry Show. . . continued from pg. 17

reducing phosphorous runoff, nutrient management, nitrogen fertilizer recommendations, potato breeding and genetics, conservation, produce safety, seed handling, weed management and much more. The Wisconsin Seed Potato

Improvement Association and WPVGA Associate Division hosted a reception Tuesday evening, and the WPVGA and Associate Division held an excellent banquet Wednesday evening, complete with hors d’oeuvres sponsored by McCain Foods, dinner, drinks,

dessert, an industry recognition and awards program, cash prizes and entertainment by Piano Fondue. Left: Leah Hamilton (left) of United FCS visits with Dan Hanson of Gowan Company (right) during the 68th Annual Industry Show. Right: Farm equipment from Unverferth Manufacturing, Harriston-Mayo, Milestone and more was lined up outside of the Holiday Inn & Convention Center in Stevens Point for the 68th Annual Industry Show. Bottom: Watching as his red disc navigated the pegs while it bounced down, an attendee played Plinko at the Wilbur-Ellis booth for a chance to win a prize. continued on pg. 20

18 BC�T March

K File #1259







the case against chloride





POTASSIUM Potatoes remove up to 56 lbs. of K 2O/100 cwt of yield1. Results show that replenishing fields with Protassium+ produces up to 5 Tons/acre more than fields treated with muriate of potash2.


Why Potato Growers Are Making the Switch to Protassium+

the harmful effects of chloride, growers have turned to Protassium+ sulfate

Protassium+ delivers nutrients that help reduce shrinkage and sprouting in storage. In fact, potatoes treated with Protassium+ have fewer sprouts per tuber after 200 days in storage versus potatoes treated with other K sources

of potash, a premium K source with more to offer.

(like muriate of potash) 3.

Many potato growers replenish their fields with K sources that contain high levels of potassium and chloride. While high potassium content is beneficial, high chloride content often leads to nutritional imbalances and nutrient displacement. To avoid TM

Muriate of Potash


Less than 1%



* 2 Lowest of all major potassium sources

0.85 per unit of K O

1.93 per unit of K 2O








8 grades







Contact your local retailer or Compass Minerals at 800.743.7258

PROTASSIUMPLUS.COM *Lower salt index has higher level of safety. ©2017 Compass Minerals. All rights reserved. 1 “Potatoes + K.” Potatoes: Surveying the Need. Compass Minerals. protassiumplus.com/surveying-the-need-in-potatoes 2 “Proof Is in the Potatoes.” Field Trial Emphasizes Benefits of Potassium for Potatoes. Holland Agricultural Services. protassiumplus.com/knowledge-center/post/proof-is-in-the-potatoes 3 “How to Win the Potato Storage Loss Battle.” Colorado State University. protassiumplus.com/knowledge-center/post/how-to-win-the-potato-storage-loss-battle 4 “The Interaction of Sulfur and Scab Disease.” The Roles of Sulfur in Nutrient – Disease Interactions. Purdue University Department of Botany and Plant Pathology. protassiumplus.com/knowledge-center/post/the-interaction-of-sulfur-and-scab-disease in 5 “Proof Is in the Potatoes.” Field Trial Emphasizes Benefits of Potassium for Potatoes. Holland Agricultural Services. protassiumplus.com/knowledge-center/post/proof-is-in-the-potatoes

TWO ESSENTIAL NUTRIENTS Protassium+ provides potatoes the necessary nutrients for optimum yield, including 17% sulfate sulfur. The sulfate sulfur in Protassium+ can help keep potatoes healthy by inhibiting the spread of powdery scab disease4.

MORE U.S. NO. 1S Results show potatoes treated with Protassium+ yield 3 Tons more U.S. No. 1s per acre than potatoes treated with muriate of potash5.

Top: Industry Show attendees were treated to cookies, chips, coffee, trucks and Spudnik trailers with E-Z Tarps, all under one roof in the exhibition hall. Middle: Perry Worzella (at right in the blueand-white checked shirt in both images) took a moment to step away from the U.S. Bank booth to go next door to the Bushmans’ Inc. booth to try his hand at getting a hole-in-one in minigolf. He apparently did well, judging by the reaction of Mike Gatz (left in the second image) of Bushmans’ Inc. Bottom: Darrell “Butch” Fencil (left) and his sonin-law Nick Laudenbach (right) of Fencil Urethane Systems, Inc., pose with Philip Pesanka (center) of Abby Bank at the Fencil booth.

20 BC�T March



Above: As part of the Grower Education Conference, WPVGA Director of Promotions, Communication and Consumer Education Dana Rady updated attendees on the Healthy Grown Program of large-scale, reduced-pesticide agriculture. For more on Healthy Grown farming practices, see the related feature article in this issue.

BMO Harris Bank Crop Production Services Gowan USA McCain Foods Thorpack, LLC V&H, Inc. Wilbur-Ellis Company, LLC

Right: Botanist Dr. Paul H. Zedler gave a concise overview of conservation in agricultural landscapes at the 2017 Grower Education Conference & Industry Show.

SILVER SPONSORS TH Agri-Chemicals The LIttle Potato Company Warner & Warner, Inc.

BRONZE SPONSORS Ansay & Associates Insight FS Progressive Ag

Left: On the first day of the UW Extension & WPVGA Grower Education Conference, Dr. David Hart, hydrologist and program leader for the Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey, spoke to interested parties about connections between geology and groundwater in the Central Sands area of the state. Right: University of Minnesota Department of Plant Pathology Research Associate Jose Pablo Dundore did his part during the Grower Education Conference, explaining how to manage soil microbiomes postfumigation to enhance potato health and yields. Bottom: New to the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show in 2017 was a “Bringing Value to Agriculture” session on Tuesday, February 7. The session consisted of 10 five-minute presentations given by select exhibitors that applied for the opportunity to discuss new technologies and approaches in agricultural management of potato and vegetable production systems. Included were Rob Peck from Northwind Renewable Energy (right), who discussed installing solar energy panels to improve a business’s bottom line, and Dustin Sawyer of Rock River Laboratories (left) who gave a presentation on plant tissue analysis. continued on pg. 22 BC�T March 21

2017 Industry Show. . . continued from pg. 21

2017 WPVGA Awards Banquet Marks Achievements Hall of Fame inductions and Industry Awards go to deserving individuals

The WPVGA Awards Banquet is a time for those invested in the potato and vegetable growing industry to sit back, relax, reflect on the previous year and look forward to the future of agriculture. The well-attended event is the highlight of the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show.

Held the evening of February 8, 2017, a social hour with hors d’oeuvres sponsored by McCain Foods was followed by the serving of a nice meal and refreshments, and of course the much-anticipated Industry Awards and Hall of Fame inductions. Following is a list of Awards and recipients.

After the awards announcements and photo opportunities, the evening’s entertainment, Piano Fondue, roused the crowd and encouraged group singalongs and participation. Cash prizes were awarded to those who stayed for the evening's fun and were lucky enough to have their names drawn. Left: Louis Wysocki garnered the AgriCommunicator Award for excellence in communication and outstanding service in providing a positive message about the agricultural industry. MIddle: Presented by the WPVGA, Andy Diercks received Volunteer of the Year honors for dedication of his time to worthy potato industry events, causes and committees. Right: The WPVGA presented University of Wisconsin Assistant Professor of Horticulture Jeff Endelman with the Researcher of the Year Award. Bottom: Enjoying the 2017 WPVGA Industry Show Banquet and Awards Ceremony were, from left to right, National Potato Council President and CEO John Keeling, United Potato Growers of America President and CEO Mark Klompien and Potatoes USA President and CEO Blair Richardson.

22 BC�T March

THE 2017 AWARD RECIPIENTS Associate Division Business Person of the Year: Wayne Solinsky WPVGA Volunteer of the Year: Andy Diercks WPVGA Young Grower of the Year: Rod Gumz WPVGA Researcher of the Year: Dr. Jeff Endelman President’s Award: Shannon Finnessy WPVGA Industry Appreciation Award: Ed Burns Agri-Communicator Award: Louis Wysocki Recognition of out-going WPVGA Associate Division Board Members: Wayne Solinsky and Dale Bowe WPVGA Hall of Fame Inductions: Donald Hamerski and Richard Pavelski

Left: Rod Gumz of Gumz Muck Farms landed the Young Grower of the Year Award presented by the WPVGA. Right: Wayne Solinsky was the deserving recipient of the Associate Division Business Person of the Year Award. Bottom: WPVGA Board President Mark Finnessy presents the President’s Award to his wife, Shannon, in gratitude for her 20 years of kindness, friendship and support. “You are the best choice I ever made in my life,” the plaque reads. continued on pg. 24

NEW Heavy Spec. Chassis N9 / 315 HP, 3000RDS-6 Speed Allison Transmission, HMX-400-52 Suspension, 14/40,000 Lb. Axles, 236” WB, All Steel Wheels, 70 Gallon Fuel Tank


~Since 1965~ PLOVER..(715)-344-2931 WAUSAU.....(715)-845-2244 www.midstatetruck.com BC�T March 23

2017 Industry Show. . . continued from pg. 23

Hall of Fame Welcomes Hamerski & Pavelski The WPVGA Hall of Fame awards are presented each year to those individuals who, through a lifelong commitment to excellence, have made a significant impact on the potato industry of Wisconsin.

Donald served in the United States Army National Guard and was called up for active duty in 1958 and 1961. He was released from active duty and returned to Wisconsin to serve out his remaining service obligation.

This year’s inductees, Donald Hamerski and Richard Pavelski, are recognized for having invested lifetimes of devotion and a little blood, sweat and tears into the potato and vegetable growing industry. Following are brief biographies on the 2017 Hall of Fame inductees.

Don Hamerski’s grandfather, Paul, came to Plover in 1889 and starting farming. According to Don, his grandfather raised “a little bit of everything, cows, potatoes, corn, you name it.” Don’s father, Joe, took over the farm in 1940 and Don formed a partnership with his father in 1961.

DONALD GEORGE HAMERSKI of Plover, Wisconsin, was born in Polonia on January 6, 1939. The son of the late Joseph Dennis Hamerski and Johanna Francis (Kaminski) Hamerski, he attended school in Stevens Point and was a 1957 graduate of P.J. Jacobs High School.

Don took over the farm in 1964, and continued to farm with his son, Jon, and his nephew, Dale O’Brien. Today, the farm raises over 2,300 acres of potatoes, sweet corn, snap beans, sweet peas and field corn. Although he attended a one-room school just down the road from

the farm as a youngster, Don was not an old-fashioned farmer. He readily embraced change, and was constantly looking to improve his farming operation with the latest, state-of-the-art technology and equipment. LONGTIME WPVGA MEMBER Donnie married his beautiful bride, Mary Piorkowski, on November 30, 1968, at St. Bronislava Catholic Church in Plover. As the proud owner of Hamerski Farms, Inc., Don was a longtime member of the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association. He was extremely honored to receive the Century Farm Award from The Rural Life Committee of the Diocese of Lacrosse in September, 2013, for being in business for 100 years. He also received the Outstanding Contribution to Agriculture Award from the Portage County Business Council in 1987.

continued on pg. 26

Current Page: Donald Hamerski (left) was posthumously inducted into the WPVGA Hall of Fame during the 2017 Industry Show Banquet. Donald’s son, Jon Hamerski (above), graciously accepted the Hall of Fame plaque in his father’s honor. 24 BC�T March

Controls foliar diseases: early blight, late blight, white mold IR Biological Activator Induces for longer periods; low risk of phytotoxicity Ideal for resistance management programs

New Product for Potatoes

2017 Certis USA


4 hour REI, zero PHI

800-250-5024 • www.CertisUSA.com

2017 Industry Show. . . continued from pg. 24

Donald was a member of St. Bronislava Parish, serving as a Eucharistic Minister and committee member to build the new church. He served as the Portage County drainage commissioner for 27 years, served on the Portage County Planning and Zoning Committee, was a board member for Mount Morris Insurance Company, was a member of the Elks Lodge and a previous Lions Club member.

Don passed away on August 9, 2016, surrounded by family. He was buried with full military honors. He is survived by his wife, Mary (Piorkowski) Hamerski, his children, Jon (Dawn) Hamerski, and Lori (Daniel) Hoerter, and his grandchildren, Trent and Taylor Hamerski, and Ashley, Katie, Gabriel and Elijah Hoerter. He’s also survived by his sister, Gerry (Larry) Stuczynski. Donnie was a very loving family man ©2017 Badgerland Financial, ACA. NMLS ID 458065 This Agency is an Equal Opportunity Provider.

Switch to a crop insurance partner. The crop insurance sign-up deadline is March 15th. Contact us today. For crop insurance solutions that address your specific challenges and not your neighbors’ down the road, make the switch to Badgerland Financial.

(877) 789-9058 badgerlandfinancial.com 26 BC�T March

and beloved friend. He was known to many as a generous contributor to countless charities in Wisconsin and was a regular donor to the annual Spud Bowl at UW-Stevens Point. He enjoyed bowling, was a die-hard Green Bay Packer fan and a great storyteller. He also enjoyed NASCAR and farm equipment. Don never missed an opportunity to put a smile on someone’s face. His most treasured accomplishment was the farm. It not only allowed him to work with and provide for his family, but truly gave him peace and joy. RICHARD “DICK” PAVELSKI is a 4th-generation farmer whose roots date back to 1873 when his great-grandfather, August Pavelski, emigrated from Poland. The farm he worked on when he was younger had some dairy cows as well as potatoes Left: In exclusive company, Richard Pavelski entered the WPVGA Hall of Fame for his lifelong commitment to excellence and significant impact on the potato industry of Wisconsin. Right: WPVGA Hall of Fame inductee Richard Pavelski (center) took the opportunity during the Industry Show Banquet to pose for a photo with his family. From left to right are Richard’s son-inlaw and daughter, Quentin and Andria Davisson, and grandchildren, Samantha, Alexander (holding the plaque), Eleanor (baby in Richard’s arms) and Elliott Davisson (purple shirt), and daughter-in-law and son, Alicia and Jeremie Pavelski.

and vegetables. Today, Dick serves as the CEO/owner of Heartland Farms, Inc., one of the largest growers of chipping potatoes in the nation, with over 18,000 acres of potatoes and vegetables. Dick was born August 21, 1949, in Stevens Point, the son of Albert and Irene Pavelski. He grew up in Amherst Junction and graduated from Pacelli High School in Stevens Point in 1967. In 1979, Dick recognized there was a need for a dedicated fullservice independent fertilizer and chemical supplier/applicator in Central Wisconsin who could meet the current and future needs of the agricultural industry, so he decided to build Pavelski Enterprises. Many of the technologies that are being used today were developed in that business. Dick worked with the Stennis Space Center and explored utilizing satellite imagery for precision applications. He helped pioneer many of the soil sampling techniques and variable rate application equipment that built a foundation for what you see today. Pavelski Enterprises’ sales grew to over $21 million annually. In 1990, Pavelski Enterprises was sold to Growmark and Richard went back and joined his brother, John, on the family farm to become more involved in the growing of crops once again. After the sale, Dick partnered up with David Knights and took the original

550-acre farming operation, Pavelski Farms, to the next level—what is today Heartland Farms. Through hard work, dedication and extreme risk, the original 550-acre farm has grown to over 18,000 acres with over $50 million in sales. Dick’s continued commitment to agricultural sustainability and innovation is second to none. During the growth of Heartland Farms, Dick consulted on production and storage projects in Scotland, the United Kingdom, Poland and Russia. He also partnered with two other growers to build a 7,000-acre potato farm in Mexico from 1997 to 2003. RENOUNED FRITO LAY GROWER Today, Heartland Farms is one of the largest Frito Lay growers in the nation. Heartland Farms was named the winner of the 2012 National Potato Council Environmental Stewardship Award. “We’re very grateful for this honor,” Pavelski said. “We have a long tradition of farming in our family and our farm has a strong commitment to sustainability. Our motto is ‘farming for the future,’ and we are committed to environmental stewardship because we want our farm to be around for future generations so we can continue to provide food for America and the world.” A past president of the WPVGA, Pavelski has served the potato and vegetable industry on state and national levels in many capacities.

He has served on the United States Potato Board and the National Potato Council and was also a director on the National Fertilizer Solutions Association. He is a past president of the Wisconsin Fertilizer and Chemical Association as well as the Wisconsin Agri-Business Council. Locally, he is a past president of the Village of Amherst Junction, and was chairman of the Amherst Fire Commission. He was a director on the Portage County Business Council and a member of the Portage County EMS Oversight Board. He was a trustee of the Stevens Point Catholic Schools Foundation as well as the Wisconsin Agri-Business Foundation. Dick is a pillar of the community, donating time and financial backing for many projects. Invested and involved in 36 closely held companies, Dick has recently been referred to as a “one man economic development committee.” Over the last 25 years, these companies have created over 2,000 new jobs, nearly all in the Central Wisconsin area. Dick married his wife, Barb, in 1973. They have three children, Michelle, Andria and Jeremie, and four grandchildren, Samantha, Alexander, Elliot and Eleanor, with another on the way. He resides in Arkdale, Wisconsin and Naples, Florida. His hobbies include golf, boating and ocean cruising.

SUPPORT YOUR FELLOW WPVGA MEMBERS When you need goods or services, please consider asking our Associate Division Members for quotes or explore what they have to offer. Together, we make a strong organization and appreciate how wonderful we are as a group. BC�T March 27

Why Wisconsin Farmers Practice

“Healthy Grown”

Dedicated growers see value in program stressing whole farm approach to best environmental practices By Joe Kertzman, Managing Editor In the mid-1990s, an idea was conceived by a group of Wisconsin potato farmers to experiment in largescale, reduced-pesticide agriculture. Included would be Integrated Pest Management (IPM) farming practices that offer common ground for growers, environmentalists and health-conscious consumers. The resulting Healthy Grown program involves a whole farm approach using the best environmental practices possible, from pesticide use to promotion of ecological standards on the farm. “Alsum Farms has been part of the Healthy Grown program since its 28 BC�T March

inception in 1996,” says Larry Alsum. “We highlight the program and our commitment to sustainable farming in our marketing messages to customers.” “We have also utilized the Healthy Grown promotional and merchandising materials to help educate Wisconsin consumers Above: An aerial image of potato harvest on Gumz Muck Farms in Endeavor, Wisconsin, was taken by a drone. Right: A retail store display bin combines the “Wisconsin Healthy Grown Potatoes” logo with the “Buy Local, Buy Wisconsin” motto. Also displayed is the “Good for you, good for the environment” Healthy Grown tagline and details on some of the program standards.

and elevate sales at retail,” Alsum notes. “There is a strong desire by the consumer to know who grows the food they eat, and we have integrated this strategy into our brand.” Alsum Farms grows 2,300 acres of certified Healthy Grown potatoes. “We have a wide variety of national customers who embrace the Healthy Grown program,” Alsum explains. “The Healthy Grown program has been the foundation of our stewardship and sustainability message to our customers, our associates and the communities that we farm and operate in.” The Healthy Grown program was developed through a collaborative effort between the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA), the World Wildlife Fund, the University of Wisconsin and other conservation groups such as the International Crane Foundation and the Defenders of Wildlife.

Currently the WPVGA maintains the Healthy Grown program to keep it local and viable. Today 8,600 acres of fresh market potato production in Wisconsin are certified Healthy Grown, which equates to over 10 percent of the potato acreage grown in the state, according to Tamas Houlihan, Executive Director of the WPVGA. Sales in Healthy Grown potatoes began in year 2000.

Above: Larry Alsum says hilling potatoes, as shown here on Alsum Farms, provides the ideal conditions for plant growth.

“When the Healthy Grown program started, we had only been farming for five years on our own, although we had been packing potatoes for 23 years,” Alsum says. “I was eager to learn about Integrated Pest Management concepts and the continued on pg. 30

Specialty Fertilizers Agronomic Services Soil Testing

Lighten the Load • Haul More Product Baumann Live Bottom


All-alluminum and stainless 3,000 lbs. lighter than anything currently used!

USED EQUIPMENT • LL 36” Piler • 4-Row 2006 LL Windrower • 2-Row Underhaug 2600 Harvester • 4-Row Kverneland 3200 Planter • 2-Row LL 850 Harvester



ISO 9001


PARTS & SERVICE Let us help you with all your parts & service needs for: TEROG & AG PARTS AVR/UNDERHAUG, DOUBLE L (LL), NOFFSINGER, BROEKEMA


TOLL FREE 800-225-9727 • 715-592-4650 1619 County K Custer, WI 54423 tip@tipinc.net Fax 715-592-5063 www.tipinc.net

151 East Hwy 6 & AB Road P.O. Box 1047 Hastings, Nebraska 68902-1047 USA Phone: 1-800-330-4264 Fax: 1-800-330-4268 Phone: (402) 462-4128 Fax: (402) 462-4617 sales@tlirr.com www.tlirr.com

TL-332S.indd 1

Model MB 111 Box Filler





• Harrison Clod Hopper • 60’ Telescoping Conveyor W/Cleaning Table & Stinger • 6-Row 3300 Kverneland Planter

BC�T March 29

6/26/15 11:57 AM

Healthy Grown. . . continued from pg. 29

collaboration with the University of Wisconsin Extension.” “The concept of collaborating with environmental groups such as the World Wildlife Fund and International Crane Foundation gave us, as potato growers, a different perspective on the environment and how to proactively be involved in protecting and improving the world we live in,” Alsum says. PRESERVE & CARE FOR THE LAND “As farmers, we understand that the land we farm is the source of life, food and jobs, and it’s our

responsibility and opportunity to preserve and care for the land and environment. I feel that farmers understand this better than anyone else,” Alsum stresses. As a University of Wisconsin researcher and outreach specialist, Deana Knuteson has been working with growers and the WPVGA staff to advance the program. She sees Healthy Grown as a benefit to producers for many reasons, one of which is to help promote the industry and give Wisconsin a “green” perception.

GROW STRONG Cultivate solid business practices and work with people who understand accounting, payroll, tax, and farming.

Michael Lensmire 715-344-4984 | CLAconnect.com

WEALTH ADVISORY | OUTSOURCING AUDIT, TAX, AND CONSULTING Investment advisory services are offered through CliftonLarsonAllen Wealth Advisors, LLC, an SEC-registered investment advisor. 36-0452 | ©2016 CliftonLarsonAllen LLP

30 BC�T March

“In the first eight years, growers achieved a 52 percent increase in adoption of sustainable practices, accompanied by a 30 percent reduction in the risk of pesticides applied to potatoes, without sacrificing yield, quality or profitability,” Knuteson says. “More than 400 acres of privately owned non-agricultural landscapes have been restored to increase biodiversity on the individual farms as a result of this program,” she adds. While the Healthy Grown program continues to expand in potato production, it also increased its overall scope, in 2016, to include carrots and onions in its list of certified crops. “Increasing acreage is important to increase awareness of the program, to work together as a state to help unify our efforts, be leaders in the Left: Standing in front of onion crates in a Gumz Muck Farms packing shed are, from left to right, Rod and Richard Gumz. The farm is taking part in a pilot year for onions, with about 600 acres dedicated to raising them Healthy Grown. Right: Shown is the Alsum Farms prairie restoration project. “Each [Healthy Grown] grower has to develop an eco-restoration project or projects for their farm that could involve prairie or wetland restoration, woodland reclamation or a combination using the non-production areas on their farm,” says Larry Alsum. Opposite Page: Larry Alsum evaluates potato growth in the field in Arena, Wisconsin.

industry and to give consumers what they want,” says Rod Gumz of Gumz Muck Farms LLC in Endeavor, Wisconsin. Gumz Farms enrolled in the program and received certification in 2016 for about 800 acres of Healthy Grown potatoes. The farm is also part of a pilot study for onions, with about 600 acres planted Healthy Grown. “Wisconsin farmers are good farmers. They are good stewards of the land. They are conscientious and progressive,” Rod Gumz stresses. A STANDARD, A BRAND “Healthy Grown is a standard, a brand, that was created to convey all of this to the market,” he remarks. “We believe the initiative behind Healthy Grown is progressive and was created ahead of its time back in the 1990s.” “Being proactive has made Wisconsin a leader in the industry and will hopefully allow Gumz Farms to

differentiate its potatoes and onions in the marketplace, which aligns more with the preferences of our consumers,” Gumz adds. The Healthy Grown program was recognized nationally, receiving the prestigious U.S. Department of Agriculture “Secretary’s Honor Award” for Maintaining and Enhancing the Nation’s Natural Resources and Environment in 2003.

The program also landed the World Wildlife Fund Gift to the Earth Award, received the international IPM Award of Achievement in 2005, and took home the International Crane Foundation Good Egg Award for Excellence in 2006. The program has also been partially funded by a number of federal and state grants. continued on pg. 32

GZA: We get you from the

water table to the kitchen table Surface Water Assessments

“We are passionate about partnering with the agricultural community to meet the water supply challenges to support and promote sustainable farming prac�ces”

Groundwater Investigations Groundwater Modeling High Capacity Well Permitting Watershed management Sustainability

GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc. Proactive by Design: Our Company Commitment.

Wetland Restoration Stormwater management

Global Water Center • 247 W Freshwater Way, Suite 542 • Milwaukee, WI 53204 • 414.831.2540 • gza.com Waukesha Location • 20900 Swenson Drive Suite 150, Waukesha, WI 53186 • 262‐754‐2560 BC�T March 31

Healthy Grown. . . continued from pg. 31

Knuteson helps direct the Healthy Grown supply chain and regulatory aspects of the program, such as working on sustainability requirements and whole farm ecological advancements. For customers, she says, this fits into the expanding need of “sustainable” produce. Gumz agrees, saying, “It is creating a standard that portrays the work of conservationists, researchers and farmers to allow for production in a sustainable practice.” “I think that, more than pesticide reduction, taking into consideration resistance and other benefits to heighten awareness will lead to using pesticides in a more environmentally responsible and sustainable manner,” he adds. Knuteson concurs, pointing out that, although a portion of the program

is to reduce high-risk pesticide use, it’s also about timing of pesticide application, resistance management and adoption of alternative practices to reduce need as applicable. Alsum adds, “Each grower has to develop an eco-restoration project or projects for their farm that could involve prairie or wetland restoration, woodland reclamation or a combination of them using the nonproduction areas on their farm.” “The grower is required to keep records to document their crop inputs, scouting records and all other farm management practices,” Alsum says. Growers wishing to enroll in the Healthy Grown program complete a Healthy Grown standards document in which they provide details on all aspects of production and sustainability. Included are minimal

requirements for growers to achieve. Once enrolled in the program, growers meet with UW-Extension specialists to develop a plan to encourage IPM adoption and stewardship principals. To manage risk effectively, multiple criteria and attributes are considered, including: •N eeds for water quality/solubility of products • S oil structure and quality •R esistance management options (during current season and for rotations) • L ocations of fields and previous management histories •C rop rotational management and material needs and uses •B eneficial insect needs •W orker risk/protection •A ir quality •D rift concerns

Benefits of spray foam insulation and polyurea coatings in Agriculture: * Long lasting * Quicker to install * Reduces energy costs * Extends the life of the structure * Great for equine barns, exterior & interior roofs, metal shop buildings, pole barns, trailers, harvesting rollers, loader buckets

No job is too big or too small for our Applicators located Statewide! 575 Commercial Avenue Green Lake, WI 54941 800-625-9577 920-294-6800 Fax 920-294-6830 www.oakridgepoly.com 32 BC�T March

• Timing of products related to pest complexes • Rate of materials (full versus reduced-rate pesticide application, depending on needs and pests) • Food safety and security • Production economics and risk • Ecological risk (avian, wildlife, etc.) Growers complete an IPM/ Pesticide Risk Reduction Protocol document that emphasizes their pest management and risk strategies for their fields. They must meet and get signatures from select UW-Extension specialists in horticulture, plant pathology and entomology. By signing off on the programs, researchers agree and verify that the protocols would be considered high-bar and certifiable for use in the field, specifically for Healthy Grown. Growers meet with an ecologist to develop long-term and annual restoration plans for their farms and select priority sites to restore during the year. Once all the paperwork is completed, it is submitted to a local auditor, currently Great Lakes Agricultural Research Services, who may complete an onsite review as well. Then the auditor reviews all the documents and certifies Healthy Grown completion for sales and

marketing purposes. A Healthy Grown grower group meets every spring with the UWExtension staff to review the program guidelines and best practices. “Each year, Gumz Farms collaborates on research plots with the university,” Gumz says. “The International Crane Foundation has completed studies to qualify and quantify damage on potatoes, as well as to monitor cranes in the form of trapping and tagging them.” Alsum says, “We hill potatoes in rows to create the ideal growing environment. Our scout carefully inspects the fields and recommends the use of pesticides when necessary.” ENVIRONMENTAL COMMITMENT “When we do use crop protection products,” he adds, “we spray low to the ground, making it safer for employees and as environmentally friendly as possible. Minimum tillage and soil conservation practices round out our commitment to the environment.” “We use irrigation only when necessary to conserve water,” Alsum stresses. “At our production facility, our water recycling program is an example of our commitment to the environment.”

03-17 Badger Common'Tater 1-3page AD (7x3).outlines.pdf



Alsum says reducing pesticide use is important for many reasons, the most important of which is to decrease the potential of pesticide runoff/leaching. “An additional reason pesticide risk management and reductions are needed is to stay ahead of the regulatory curve and to be ready when pesticides are limited or removed from the market,” Knuteson reminds. “We encourage the adoption of lower-risk alternatives so growers are prepared for regulation if it occurs.” With less than 2 percent of the population engaged in agriculture production, Alsum says there’s a need to show consumers that farmers are taking care of the natural resources that we all enjoy. “This forward-thinking marketing program creates a brand for ecofriendly Wisconsin-grown potatoes, and communicates our commitment to consumers that they are getting a product that is grown in a sustainable manner,” Alsum surmises. “I strongly recommend that other growers consider the Healthy Grown program as a learning process for improving their farm practices, and in turn, to promote the positive impact that our farms are having on our local communities.”

10:33 AM

BC�T March 33

Now News Lambeau Field Plays Host to Agronomic Seminar Redox and T.I.P. invited growers to Green Bay’s historic football stadium Key agronomic principles and opportunities to meet the nutritional needs of crops were key talking points during the Redox University Agronomic Seminar held January 20 at the historic Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Hosted by AgGrow Solutions/T.I.P. (Tatro Irrigation & Potato) and Redox,

the seminar focused on innovative plant growth technology. Corporate Agronomist and owner of Redox, Idaho, John Kelly, and Agronomist Eric Massey addressed a crowd of growers and associates, breaking for lunch and ending with a tour of Lambeau Field for all interested attendees.



“Your Locally Owned and Family Operated Full Service Multi-Peril and Crop Hail Insurance Agency. Call US today for your crop insurance needs!”


Chad Glaze

www.vinevestnorth.com 1124 Merrill Avenue • Wausau, WI 888-675-1829 • 715-675-1829 An Equal Opportunity Employer

34 BC�T March

Chad Glaze Owner/Agent

We work with Growers throughout Wisconsin. Call Today! 1-888-675-1829

Headquartered in southern Idaho, and with most manufacturing in Dallas, Redox does business in 43 states. A specialty chemical and nutrient company, Redox offers compounds, acids, fertilizers, carbon complexes, herbicides, adjuvants, fungicides, surfactants, extracts and more. Above: Corporate Agronomist and Owner of Redox, Idaho, John Kelly addresses growers at an Agronomic Seminar hosted by Redox and AgGrow Solutions by T.I.P., January 20, at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Kelly and Massey delved deeply into nitrogen and phosphorous, and covered topics such as how nitrogen and genetics changed agriculture; the practice of combining urea, zinc and boron into a foliar and how low application of the foliar promotes better reproductive growth; and why higher anti-oxidants mean stronger cell walls in plants. They talked about soil testing and farm-specific applications of product and then covered several Redox

products, such as Rootex, Supreme, H-85, diKaP, PeneCal, TriPlex Boron and others. Steve Tatro of T.I.P. explained that his company can provide soil reports for growers in interactive forms, and go over plot, whole field and overall farm strategies. Government regulations and how they affect growers and the way they treat crops was another overarching theme. All topics were presented in the spirit of applying nutrients and

chemicals to crops at key times and in correct applications and amounts for higher yields and better quality. Left: Wisconsinites, from left to right, Andy Diercks of Coloma Farms, J.D. Schroeder of Schroeder Brothers Farms and Steve Tatro, owner of T.I.P., listen in and take notes while Redox Corporate Agronomist John Kelly talks about innovative plant growth technology. Right: John Kelly (left) and Eric Massey (center), agronomists with Redox, answer a question from Joe Seis (right) of Sterling Farms, LLC during the Redox University Agronomic Seminar on January 20. continued on pg. 36

J.W. Mattek & Sons, Inc. N5798 STAR NEVA RD, DEERBROOK, WI 54424 Telephone: (715) 623-6963 • FAX: (715) 627-7245 • Email: jwmattek@gmail.com GROWER & SHIPPER

Foundation and Certified Seed Potatoes


Over Years Experience in Seed Production!! White Chip Varieties • Snowden • Pike • Atlantic • MegaChip • Lamoka • Accumulator • Beacon Chipper


Contact: Jim, John or Joe (715)

• Pinnacle • Manistee • Hodag

russets • Mercury • Norkotah Line 8 • Silverton

623-6963 BC�T March 35

Now News. . . continued from pg. 35

Farm Bureau Endorses Trump’s Ag Pick— Sonny Perdue Enthusiasm is high throughout agriculture community for former Georgia governor Commenting on President Donald J. Trump’s choice of former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, says, “The nomination of former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue for Secretary of Agriculture is welcome news to the nation’s farmers and ranchers. Gov. Perdue will provide the strong voice that agriculture needs in the new administration. He is an outstanding nominee.” Perdue, a Republican, will replace Democrat Tom Vilsack as head of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, overseeing approximately 100,000 employees and in charge of a circa-$140 billion budget. He is also charged with putting together a comprehensive 2018 Farm Bill. With a doctorate in veterinary medicine, Perdue spent much of his career in the fertilizer and grain business in rural Georgia after fulfilling his obligations with the U.S. Air Force. He grew up on a dairy and crop farm

February 2017

Badger er Common’Tat THE VOICE




$18.00/year $1.50/copy

“I have known Gov. Perdue for years. I’ve seen firsthand his commitment to the business of agriculture as we worked together on issues facing farmers and ranchers in our home state of Georgia,” Duvall says.

in central Georgia and has founded and owned several fertilizer, grain and grain elevator companies. He served on the board of the National Grain and Feed Association and was president of Georgia Feed and Grain, as well as Southeastern Feed and Grain. TRUMP ADVISOR Perdue served two terms as governor of Georgia, from 2003-2011, and was an original member of President Trump’s agricultural advisory team announced in August.

Badger Common’Tater


EXPO: 2017 POTATO N! PULSATING ACTIO A BEE” BAYER’S “FEED Seeds Plants 50 Million Y HARM ONY HARV EST FAMIL g Today Succession Plannin ER BEGIN NING FARMs Overcomes Barrier potatoes can tor/trailers of Farms Four semi-trac time in the Neumiller Illinois. be loaded at a shed in Savanna, loading and grading

36 BC�T March


umiller Tom Ne iller Farms, Inc. Neum

“He understands the challenges facing rural America because that’s where he was born and raised. He is a businessman who recognizes the impact immigration reform, trade agreements and regulation have on a farmer’s bottom line and ability to stay in business from one season to the next,” Duvall adds. “The American Farm Bureau looks forward to continuing our work with the USDA under Gov. Perdue’s leadership,” Duvall concludes. “When farmers and ranchers are free to access cutting-edge technologies, reach new markets and make decisions that protect their businesses and resources, we all are better off.” Above: Former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue is the new U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.

Subscribe Today!

Whether you are a grower, industry partner or simply enjoy rural life, sign up to receive this prestigious publication in print version, delivered direct to your mailbox for $18/year (12 issues). wisconsinpotatoes.com/blog-news/subscribe

Trump Overturns WOTUS President Donald J. Trump lays out “America First Energy Plan” In one of his first initiatives, President Donald J. Trump spelled out plans on the www.whitehouse.gov website to eliminate former President Barack Obama’s controversial Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule as defined under the Clean Water Act. President Trump has since repealed WOTUS. The Obama administration defined which rivers, streams, lakes and marshes fall under the jurisdiction of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers. But opponents, including most agriculture advocacy groups, saw it as a power grab and overregulation. President Trump’s administration posted plans to not only eliminate WOTUS, but also Obama’s Climate

Action Plan, and outlined the administration’s own initiatives such as drilling for shale, oil and natural gas on federal lands and embracing clean coal energy. Titled “An America First Energy Plan,” here’s the complete post as it reads on the www.whitehouse.gov website: AN AMERICA FIRST ENERGY PLAN “Energy is an essential part of American life and a staple of the world economy. The Trump Administration is committed to energy policies that lower costs for hardworking Americans and maximize the use of American resources, freeing us from dependence on foreign oil. For too long, we’ve been held back by burdensome regulations on our energy industry. President Trump is



committed to eliminating harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule. Lifting these restrictions will greatly help American workers, increasing wages by more than $30 billion over the next seven years. Sound energy policy begins with the recognition that we have vast untapped domestic energy reserves right here in America. The Trump Administration will embrace the shale oil and gas revolution to bring jobs and prosperity to millions of Americans. We must take advantage of the estimated $50 trillion in untapped shale, oil and natural gas reserves, especially those on federal lands that the American people own. continued on pg. 38

Installed on more pivots than all competitive brands combined. Save time and money by taking command of your center pivots with AgSense Field Commander. No more driving to fields to stop, start or check on your irrigation equipment. The Field Commander works on any brand or vintage of electric and hydraulic pivot including Valley, Zimmatic, Reinke, Pierce, Olson, Lockwood and T-L.





KEEP COSTSCABLE LOW THEFT WITH EFFICIENT WATER APPLICATION. MONITORING & n ALERTS Meet irrigation challenges head-on with greater water efficiency. Converting to low-pressure sprinkler WITHOUT POWER technology saves thousands in energy bills. Valley Irrigation will ensure that every drop of water is working to put more money in your pocket. Trust your Valley dealer to get the right design in your hands. Schedule a sprinkler package review today. ®

North Central Irrigation Plainfield, WI: 715-335-6368 • 800-755-0268 DEALER IMPRINT Beloit, WI: 608-362-0706 • 800-924-0321 www.valleynci.com 4 COLUMN x 5” (SAU50) 7.708” x 5”

valleyirrigation.com BC�T March 37

Now News. . . continued from pg. 37

We will use the revenues from energy production to rebuild our roads, schools, bridges and public infrastructure. Less expensive energy will be a big boost to American agriculture, as well. The Trump Administration is also committed to clean coal technology, and to reviving America’s coal industry, which has been hurting for too long. In addition to being good for our economy, boosting domestic energy production is in America’s national security interest. President Trump is committed to achieving energy independence from the OPEC cartel and any nations hostile to our interests. At the same time, we will work with our Gulf allies to develop a positive energy relationship as part of our anti-terrorism strategy.


s Paid Here, Stay ium He em r r P




Lastly, our need for energy must go hand in hand with responsible stewardship of the environment. Protecting clean air and clean water, conserving our natural habitats and preserving our natural reserves and resources will remain a high priority. President Trump will refocus the EPA

on its essential mission of protecting our air and water. A brighter future depends on energy policies that stimulate our economy, ensure our security, and protect our health. Under the Trump Administration’s energy policies, that future can become a reality.”


To g. Kee p Wisconsin Stron

For more information about the farm dividend program and how you may qualify, call 877-219-9550 or contact your local Rural Mutual agent. 38 BC�T March

Rural Mutual Insurance Company


Culver’s Raises Over $360,000 for Ag Organizations Included is the purchase of FFA jackets for members who cannot afford them Culver’s restaurants across 24 states continue to build support for American agriculture as part of the chain’s “Thank You Farmers” program. Since its inception in 2013, over a million dollars has been raised in support of the National Future Farmers of America (FFA) Organization, local FFA chapters and a variety of other agricultural organizations. Culver’s remains committed to sourcing the finest ingredients America’s family growers have to offer. The restaurant chain has turned its gratitude into full-fledged support of today’s farm families, while providing financial support to those young people wishing to pursue careers in agriculture.

dedication of farm families and building awareness of the critical role agriculture has in our lives,” Corning adds. As the Thank You Farmers program enters its fifth year, Culver’s was involved in fundraising opportunities during National FFA week beginning Feb. 18. Included was the annual essay contest where FFA chapters had the chance to win money toward a trip to the 2017 National FFA Convention & Expo. Culver’s also signed up restaurants to sponsor additional FFA jackets.

Jay-Mar can give you that edge with innovative, proven technologies that help you maximize your potential this season.

In 2016, over $360,000 was raised for local FFA chapters, the National FFA Foundation and other agricultural organizations across the country. Included is over $31,000 for the Blue Jacket program, where Culver’s sponsors the cost of purchasing FFA jackets for members who otherwise wouldn’t be able to own this special attire. In addition, following the passing of Culver’s President and CEO Phil Keiser last fall, $25,000 was contributed in his name for an FFA endowment scholarship. “We’re proud to see the enthusiasm with which our franchisees and guests have supported Thank You Farmers,” said Jessie Corning, senior marketing manager and member of the National FFA Foundation Sponsors’ board of directors. “We recognize the hard work and

continued on pg. 40

Visit with a Jay-Mar agronomist today.

lizer available to the

Protects phosphate, keeping your ferti plant longer.

nitrogen efficiency, This polymer-coated urea maximizes varieties and helps corn id hybr of ntial pote boosts the yield ent. to minimize the impact on the environm

VitatracE AristA

y and micronutrient A complete, fully-chelated secondar comprehensive and formulation. It provides a synergistic, d NPK. liqui ent plant-available blend to complim g the soil and building Fortifies fertility programs by enhancin rietary blend of prop a more robust root mass. Contains a carbohydrates. and s acid ic mycorrhizae, amino acids, hum

www. Jay-Mar.com Call Wayne, Tom, Brion, Ann Plover (715) 341-3445 • 800-236-2436 Antigo (715) 627-4321 or Julie today! BC�T March 39

Now News. . . continued from pg. 39

About National FFA Organization The National FFA Organization is a youth organization of 649,355 student members as part of 7,859 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The organization is supported by 225,891 alumni members in 1,934 local FFA Alumni chapters throughout the U.S. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The National FFA Organization operates under

a federal charter granted by the 81st United States Congress, and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The U.S. Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to state and local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the National FFA Organization online at www.FFA.org and on Facebook, Twitter and the official National FFA Organization blog. About National FFA Foundation The National FFA Foundation builds partnerships with industry, education, government, other

foundations and individuals to secure financial resources that recognize FFA member achievements, develop student leaders and support the future of agriculture education. Governed by a 19-member board of trustees composed of educators, business leaders, individual donors and FFA alumni, the foundation is a separately-registered nonprofit organization. About 82 percent of all sponsorship dollars received by the foundation support FFA members and agricultural education opportunities. For more information, visit the National FFA Foundation at http://www.FFA. org/Give.

FFA Attracts More Women to Ag Careers Females rise to the top leadership roles in national FFA offices When the 2016 National FFA Convention convened on October 19, 2016, in Indianapolis, representatives from Syngenta predicted correctly that they would see record numbers of female attendees. That’s because female membership in FFA grew from 26 percent during the 1992-’93 academic year to 44 percent during the 2015-’16 academic year. Plus, females have risen to top leadership roles. In 2016, young women held five of the six national FFA offices. “Organizations like FFA and 4-H help foster leadership skills for all participants,” said Jenny Heaton, head of talent management for Syngenta, North America. “As more leadership opportunities open for young women, these experiences should provide them with more confidence that the agricultural world is ready to accept them as equal partners.” Megan Moll, a Golden Harvest® Seed Advisor™ manager at Syngenta, said FFA helped put her on a path to her agricultural career. As a young girl, she loved working on her family’s farm in Michigan. In high school, she became involved in her local FFA chapter by holding different offices and 40 BC�T March

participating in activities, including the National FFA Convention and a leadership conference in Washington, D.C. “I’m grateful for my FFA experience, because not only did it teach me organizational, team-building and public-speaking skills, but it also built my personal confidence to be able to talk in front of a large group of people,” said Moll. “Everything I learned from FFA has helped me become who I am today.” LIFE-CHANGING EXPERIENCES Similarly, Darcy Maulsby worked on her family’s farm in Lake City, Iowa, and was an active participant in 4-H during her youth. But she didn’t think about joining FFA until an ag teacher recruited her. Only a few girls were in FFA then, and her experiences proved to be life changing. “I look back and think, ‘They were really on top of it for giving us an opportunity to do that,’” said Maulsby. “FFA pushed me in new directions and really helped me grow with communication and leadership skills I have used my entire life.” Today, Maulsby operates her own ag writing and marketing business on the

family farm, where she stays tightly connected to the farm business. She’s also very involved in Farm Bureau, Iowa Corn Growers and Iowa Soybean Association. “There are a lot of smart women out there transforming agriculture, and it’s exciting to see that change,” Maulsby said. “I definitely encourage young women to get involved in agriculture.” Syngenta encouraged all National FFA Convention attendees to stop by its booth, where they could read other stories about being #RootedinAg or tell their own on a special digital wall. For the latest news and trends in agriculture, go to www.syngentathrive.com.

Potato Industry Commits $5m

to Support Potato and Vegetable Research

University research team and related facilities are proven assets to the entire industry

Above: An aerial view is a great way to capture the layout of the Hancock Agricultural Research Station.

By Nicole Miller, University of Wisconsin CALS Office of External Relations The Wisconsin potato industry has had a strong, decades-long partnership with University of Wisconsin-Madison potato researchers, one that has helped place Wisconsin among the top three potato-producing states in the nation. Now, to ensure the ongoing strength of this relationship, the industry has made a commitment to raise $5 million over the next 10 years to support the university program. “This support stems from the great value that our growers and our potato industry see in the University of Wisconsin-Madison research team and the related research facilities,” says Tamas Houlihan, executive director of the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA). The funds will be raised by the state’s potato growers in the form of an

additional assessment on their potato sales. The industry made a first step toward this commitment this past summer, when, at the request of the WPVGA, the Wisconsin Potato Industry Board increased the assessment on potato sales by 1 cent per hundredweight (cwt.), raising it from 6 to 7 cents/cwt.

RPX system, the


This is just one of our custom products DESIGNED to maximize returns on your storage operation.

The Board will consider raising the assessment by another penny in the next fiscal year, the maximum it can be increased in a year. “We decided the additional support was needed to make sure the relationship doesn’t end because of a shortfall or cutback in funding to the university,” explains Steve Diercks, owner of Coloma Farms and a WPVGA member who helped advocate for the increased assessment. continued on pg. 42

Call and let us show you the value BTU Ventilation can provide. Fresh Air Control • CO2 Control Temperature Control

47418 US Hwy 10 Perham, MN 56573 PH: 218-346-3357 Toll Free: 888-884-8070 www.btuvent.com

BC�T March 41

Potato Industry Commits. . . continued from pg. 41 RIght: Researchers harvest potatoes at the UWMadison Hancock Agricultural Research Station. Photo courtesy of Sevie Kenyon/UW-Madison CALS Below: Potato planting at the Hancock Agricultural Research Station is a first right of spring. Photos courtesy of Sevie Kenyon, UW-Madison CALS

What do you expect from the seed potatoes that you buy?

The varieties that yo

u need.

The early generation that you want.

The quality and yie ld you have come to that expect.

Wisconsin has it!

For a directory of Wisconsin Certified Seed Potato Growers or a free video, contact:


Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association, Inc. P.O. Box 173, Antigo, WI 54409 715-623-4039 www.potatoseed.org

View a directory of the Wisconsin Certified Seed Potato Growers on your smartphone.

VIBRANT POTATO TEAM “We want to make sure we are able to keep the potato team—which has worked so well for the industry— intact and vibrant,” Diercks adds. A 2-cent increase in the assessment is expected to generate around $500,000 per year. The money will go into a fund that was recently established at the Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association, which serves as UW-Madison’s nonprofit gift-receiving organization. The paperwork for the new fund was finalized in December, and the WPVGA and the university celebrated this new commitment at the UW-Extension and WPVGA Grower Education Conference, Feb. 7-9 in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. According to Jed Colquhoun, interim associate dean for extension and outreach at the UW-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS), the gift was made possible by the high level of trust that has developed over the decades as growers and researchers have worked side by side to solve problems and develop best practices. “None of this would have happened if we didn’t have that trusting, longterm relationship to begin with. And that’s the part that I think is extremely unique, based on what I’ve seen in other states. It’s a true partnership. We’re at the table together,” says Colquhoun, a UWMadison horticulture professor and UW-Extension fruit and vegetable production specialist. The WPVGA has been a financial backer of the university’s potato program for many years, including spending around $350,000 per year to fund specific research projects. The new fund, which will be overseen by a seven-member advisory board made up of potato and vegetable industry representatives, will expand the industry’s investment options, giving them more flexibility to invest in the university’s research, staffing or facilities—whatever is needed—to

is now over 10 years old.

keep the program and the state’s industry at the forefront. RETAINING RESEARCHERS “We’ve seen some of our key researchers either retire or leave for various reasons, and a lot of those positions don’t get filled at all, and for others it takes years before they do get refilled,” Houlihan says. “We thought it would be important to have funds available to help retain some of these researchers or to entice high-level, top-notch faculty to refill the vacant positions,” he adds. The funds may also be used to cover operational and maintenance costs at the university’s agricultural research stations that help support this work. For instance, the Potato and Vegetable Storage Research Facility at Hancock Agricultural Research Station, which was built with WPVGA funds and donated to the university,

The Only Authorized Product List: Dock Products Mechanical & Hydraulic Docklevers Trailer Restraints Dock Shelters & Seals (Truck & Rail) Hydraulic Dock Lifts Portable Plates Dockboards-Portable, Aluminum & Steel Platforms-Portable Mobile Yard Ramps Air Curtains (Insect/Temperature Control) Bascule Bridges

At some point in the future, notes Houlihan, it will need maintenance and repairs, and he wants the industry to be able to help cover some of those costs, if needed. The WPVGA’s ultimate goal is to raise $10 million for the fund over 10 years, with the help of additional private contributions from growers, vegetable processing companies and other allied industry members. “We are very grateful for the industry’s investment in us. This will ensure we keep an energized research and extension community involved in potato and vegetable production here at UW-Madison,” says Kate VandenBosch, dean of CALS. “It gives us the ability to address new and emerging opportunities that will drive us forward.”

Distributor in Wisconsin & Upper Michigan Waste Handling Balers Compactors Containers Self-dumping Hoppers Shredders In-Plant Products Offices-Portable & Prefab Pre-assembled Portable Buildings Racking Mezzanines/Coveyors Work Positioning Lifts

Pneumatic Tube Systems Hydraulic Work Position Tables Energy Recovering Make-up Air Systems Vertical Material Handling Lifts HVLS Fans Doors Industial Sectional OH & Fire Doors Hi-speed Roll-up & Bi-parting Traffic Strip Cooler & Freezer

3190 Coronet Way • P.O. Box 10476 • Green Bay, WI 54307-0476 • 920-336-3499 • Fax 920-336-9580

www.knkmaterialhandling.com • CKacz@knkmaterialhandling.com


Seed Piece Annual Seed Meeting Saw Slate of Quality Presenters Seed program outlook, budget and issues discussed, and new board formed

January 25 marked the 57th Annual Wisconsin Seed

Potato Improvement Association (WSPIA) Seed Meeting at North Star Lanes in Antigo. The meeting included seed certification program reports, state farm reports, guest speakers, an annual business meeting, refreshments and a dinner sponsored by Syngenta Crop Protection. Alex Crockford, program director of the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program, presented a report, outlook and budget for the program, and discussed seed certification issues and Hawaii winter test changes. State Farm Manager Keith Heinzen and Senior Inspector Dianna Kessler gave the state farm and post-harvest test reports. Guest speakers included Peter Joyce of Potatoes USA, who gave a fascinating account of seed export to Myanmar and working and visiting with growers in the country, while

Chuck Bolte, a certified crop advisor for AgSource Laboratories, spoke about controlling and monitoring runoff events on the Antigo Flats.

a crop protection state agronomist for Syngenta, reviewed the company’s latest products, advancements and technologies.

Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association Executive Director Tamas Houlihan presented an update on the association and its involvement in industry issues and initiatives, and Darrel Daniels,

LIVE VIDEO FEED Freezing rain might have kept University of Wisconsin Plant Pathologist Amanda Gevens and UW Entomologist Russ Groves from attending the Annual Seed Meeting, but it didn’t prevent them from presenting updates on managing late blight and silver scurf (Gevens) and Above: With Eric Schroeder having served multiple terms on the board of the Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association (WSPIA), including a term as president, and J.D. Schroeder voted onto the board, the new 2017 WSPIA Board is, from left to right, J.D. (all smiles), Jeff Fassbender, Dan Kakes, Charlie Mattek and Bill Guenthner. Bottom: Freezing rain kept University of Wisconsin Plant Pathologist Amanda Gevens (center) and UW Entomologist Russ Groves (left) from attending the Annual Seed Meeting, so Alex Crockford (right), program director of the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program, presented leadership awards to Gevens and Groves at the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show instead. The awards are for outstanding service and leadership in the Wisconsin seed potato industry.

44 BC�T March

PVY management (Groves) via video and teleconference. During the WSPIA annual business meeting, Board Vice President Gill Guenthner presented Eric Schroeder, outgoing president of the board, with a plaque commemorating his years of service. With that, J.D. Schroeder was unanimously voted onto the board as a new member. WSPIA board members awarded $1,500 certificates to those who have worked to further the certified seed program in Wisconsin, with recipients including Crockford, Stephen Zimmerman (acting director of the Langlade County Ag Research Station), Felix Navarro (superintendent of the Hancock Agricultural Research Station) and Shelly Haggerty (4H youth program representative).

New grading line! Accurate sizing to meet your needs!

The oldest of its kind in the country, the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program is one of the most highly respected, if not the most respected, of similar programs and a crown jewel of the WSPIA and its dedicated grower members and board of directors. continued on pg. 46

Above: The 2016 WSPIA Board awarded $1,500 certificates to those who have worked to further the certified seed program in Wisconsin, with recipients including, front row, from left to right, Alex Crockford (program director, Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program), Stephen Zimmerman (acting director of the Langlade County Ag Research Station), Felix Navarro (superintendent of the Hancock Agricultural Research Station) and Shelly Haggerty (4H youth program representative.) On the 2016 WSPIA Board, back row, from left to right, is Dan Kakes, Jeff Fassbender, Charlie Mattek, Bill Guenthner and Eric Schroeder.

David J. Fleischman Farms Wisconsin Certified Seed Potatoes

B-size Seed Available! w, Stored in brand ne ty. ili fac ge ra sto e B-siz

State-of-the-art Storage Facilities 1- 2- 3-Year Contracts N2568 Hwy HH • Antigo, WI 54409


Fax: 715-627-0183 • Cell: 715-216-2343

Beautiful Yukon Gold Crop! Attractive • Smooth Skin

We treat all seed as if we were going to replant it ourselves.

YELLOWS – Yukon Gold Oneida Gold WHITES – Superiors RUSSETS – Goldrush, Russet Norkotah REDS – Red Norland, Dark Red Norland


Seed Piece. . . continued from pg. 45

WISCONSIN CERTIFIED SEED POTATOES Top: Enjoying the Annual Seed Meeting were, from left to right, Joshua Kunzman of the UW state seed potato farm in Rhinelander, and Josie Spurgeon and Dianna Kessler of the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program. Left: State Farm Manager Keith Heinzen presented State Farm reports at the 57th Annual WSPIA Seed Meeting. RIght: New WSPIA Board President Bill Guenthner (right) presented Eric Schroeder (left), outgoing president of the board, with a plaque commemorating his years of service.

57th Annual Seed Meeting Sponsors Premiere Dinner Sponsor: Syngenta Crop Protection Event Sponsors Include: AMVAC Chemicals AgSource Laboratories BASF Bayer CropScience Big Iron Equipment, Inc. Bio-Gro BMO Harris Bank Chase Bank, Antigo

46 BC�T March

CoVantage Credit Union CPS Great Lakes Crop Care of Langlade County Dow AgroSciences DuPont Insight FS Jay-Mar, Inc. Monsanto Company Quinlan’s Equipment, Inc. Riesterer & Schnell Roberts Irrigation Company Ron’s Refrigeration

Rural Insurance – Antigo Sand County Equipment, LLC Southside Tire Co. Swiderski Equipment, Inc. T.I.P., Inc. TH Agri-Chemicals, Inc. United FCS - Antigo Valent USA Corporation Volm Companies Warner & Warner

Spud seed classic

Friday, June 23, 2017 Bass Lake Country Club W10650 Bass Lake Road Deerbrook, WI 54424

WSPIA Golf Outing

2017 Sponsorships Available:

Accepting Sponsorship After

May 10, 2017

Dinner Sponsor $2,000

SUPERIOR Sponsor $500

• Company name and logo on three 12-foot banners placed in prominent areas including dinner area • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal Recognition and name on sign at event • Registration and dinner for four golfers

• Company Name and logo on one 8-foot banner placed in a prominent area on the course • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal recognition and name on sign at event

Gold Rush Sponsor $1,500

OCCUPIED HOLE Sponsor $300

• Company Name and logo on two 12-foot banners placed in a prominent area on the course • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal recognition and name on sign at event • Registration and dinner for four golfers

SILVERTON Sponsor $1,000 • Company name and logo on one 12-foot banner placed in a prominent area on the course • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal Recognition and name on sign at event • Registration and dinner for one golfer

Contact Karen Rasmussen for more details (715) 623-7683 Make checks payable to WSPIA

Mail payment to: WSPIA, P.O. Box 173 Antigo, WI 54409

• Company name on hole sign • Rights to occupy a hole on the course and provide giveaways* *If alcohol is being served, it must be purchased through the golf course • Verbal recognition and name on sign at event

BASIC HOLE Sponsor $200 • Company name on hole sign • Verbal recognition and name on sign at event

Since 1998, this tournament raised over $50,000, which was donated to Wisconsin potato research. BC�T March 47

Badger Beat

Inducing Plant Immunity—Reducing Potato Virus Y Infection By Russell L. Groves1, Steve Zimmerman2 and Alex Crockford3, University of Wisconsin, Department of Entomology1, Langlade County Cooperative Extension2, Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program, Antigo, Wisconsin3

Plants are often simultaneously exposed to multiple organisms

that feed upon or potentially infect them, including insects and microbes, such as bacteria, viruses and fungi. Plants, unlike mammals, lack mobile cells that result in an adaptive immune system. Instead, they rely on the innate immunity of each cell and on systemic signals emanating from infection sites. Plant immune systems must also integrate a diversity of factors to successfully fight off pathogens without harming the plant. Defense-related changes in hormone signaling, for example, can interfere with plant growth. In fact, many species “power down” their immune systems at night, when plant growth ramps up.

of the host plant for their own benefit. S.H. Chung et al.* (2013) recently demonstrated that attacking Colorado potato beetles secrete symbiotic bacteria, which they carry with them, into the feeding wounds of tomato to suppress plant defenses. The bacteria in these salivary secretions from the beetle effectively redirect defense signaling in the plant to “incorrectly” prepare for a pathogen attack. Consequently, the over-expression of the SA defense pathway results in the downregulation of JA-mediated defense, which ultimately benefits the beetle’s performance.

The level of plant immunity also which effectively allows the plant fluctuates with changes in abiotic to fine-tune the induction of their defenses against different attackers. conditions (e.g. temperature, humidity and light exposure), and Therefore, depending on the is quite dependent on a plant’s plant-attacker combination, the association with other microbes both antagonistic effect of SA on JA INGENIUS BACTERIA below and above the soil. defense responses may either Both mineral oil applications and induced resistance activators can reduce yield inbepotato, though by different In addition, these symbiotic bacteria mechanisms. can partially break to down thebeneficial cuticle andormay interfere with transpiration, while LifeGard and detrimental to the Plants Mineral do not,oil however, respond carried by the beetle also result in ® Actigard 50WG both additional metabolic demands on the by up-regulating plant defenses proactively. attacker orplant colonizer. In general, assaults fromcause microbes or insects a fully systemic defense response in chewing insects (herbivores) largely in the same way. Two of the major undamaged leaves away from the In this defense trial, tuber yield at harvest was not found to vary significantly treatmentwhile for either “A” (size > 1 7/8”) or “B”activate the JAby response, many mechanisms that plants attack site, predisposing the plant to sized tubers (between 1.5” and 1 7/8”). PVY incidence was determined by growing and serologically evaluating a pathogens and even suckingout insects use against these attackers are the further attack by the insect, which is sample of harvested tubers during the Wisconsin Seed(e.g. Potato Certification Program’s post-harvest in Hawaii aphids, leafhoppers) activate the evaluations jasmonic acid (JA) and salicylic acid rather ingenious, actually! (Fig. 2). SA-mediated defenses. (SA) pathways. In fact, once a plant The bacterial-induced SA signal that the specific ofG.W. 2013. Recent studies shownplant defenses *Chungdetermines S.H., Rosa C., Hoover K., Lutheidentity D.S., Felton Colorado potatohave beetlealso manipulates in localinand results the insect-microbe example attacker, it can up-regulate thee27592. doi:10.4161/psb.27592. that both herbivores and pathogens systemicthe leaves. Plant Signaling & Behavior. 8(12) above is also very similar to the can hijack the defense machinery appropriate defense mechanism, signals induced by other microbial May Soybean aphid




9 July

Corn leaf aphid

23 July

Spotted alfalfa aphid Bird cherry-oat aphid


3 Aug 12 June

17 Sep

pathogens. This systemic “wholeplant” resistance response that occurs following an earlier localized exposure to a pathogen is referred to as systemic acquired resistance, or “SAR.”

Here again, this SAR is somewhat analogous to the immune response found in animals. But unlike the response in animals, there is evidence that SAR in plants may be a relatively short-lived event, lasting on average Figure 1: Shown is the seasonal occurrence of four aphid species in Wisconsin denoting the average date of first flight.

48 BC�T March

Figure 1. Shown is the seasonal occurrence of four aphid species in Wisconsin denoting the average date of first flight.

only five to seven days after the initial attack. One explanation for this more ephemeral response results from the energy demands placed upon the plant to mount and maintain a defense response. The capacity to launch SAR is important for plants to resist disease, as well as to recover from disease once formed. As discussed previously, SAR can be induced by a wide range of pathogens, and the resistance observed following induction can be effective against a wide range of microbes. In this way, SAR is sometimes referred to as a “broad spectrum” level of resistance, albeit for a relatively short time period. The capacity to induce SAR has also been described in a wide range of flowering plants, and this certainly includes potato. Equally important, we have learned to artificially induce SAR response in plants with soil and foliar-applied compounds, including microbial biopesticides, plant extracts and proteins, synthetic chemical analogues and even the soil-applied neonicotinoid insecticides. ANTIMICROBIAL PROTEINS

aphid species and learn when it is of critical importance to begin managing for the spread of the PVY. In 2016, we established field experiments at the Langlade County Airport to determine if the spread of PVY could be more effectively limited by applying a select set of compounds that could induce resistance. The primary purpose of this experiment was to evaluate the efficacy of a newly registered, Bacillus mycoides, isolate J, in combination with our standard mineral oil applications. The Environmental Protection Agency recently registered LifeGard® WG as the first foliarapplied, biological plant activator available on the market, and available for use on potatoes and a variety of other specialty agricultural crops to control diseases. As earlier discussed, treated plants respond by “switching on” resistance genes, causing a cascade of metabolic responses to limit infection and disease development. LifeGard performed well in our investigations

Both mineral oil applications and induced resistance activators can reduce yield in potato, though by different mechanisms. Mineral oil can partially break down the cuticle and may interfere with transpiration, while LifeGard and Actigard® 50WG both cause additional metabolic demands on the plant by upregulating plant defenses proactively. In this trial, tuber yield at harvest was not found to vary significantly by treatment for either “A” (size > 1 7/8”) or “B”-sized tubers (between 1.5” and 1 7/8”). PVY incidence was determined by growing out and serologically evaluating a sample of harvested tubers during the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program’s post-harvest evaluations in Hawaii (Fig. 2). *Chung S.H., Rosa C., Hoover K., Luthe D.S., Felton G.W. 2013. Colorado potato beetle manipulates plant defenses in local and systemic leaves. Plant Signaling & Behavior. 8(12) e27592. doi:10.4161/ psb.27592.

Figure 2: Mean (± SE) Potato virus Y incidence per treatment comparing induced resistance compounds and mineral oil programs.








The relative importance of this induced resistance phenomenon in plants directly coincides with our work in potato to manage the spread of Potato virus Y (PVY) in seed potato. Specifically, we have been collecting aphid capture data from the North Central Region Aphid Suction Trap Network (http://traps.ncipmc.org/) from a span of 10 years (2005-2015) in the upper Midwestern United States.


LifeGard Aphoil


These trap data are then standardized for each year, location and date, and the resulting timing of unique aphid species flights can be estimated (Fig. 1). From these models, we are able to predict the phenology of unique

Specifically, an induction of SAR results in the accumulation proteins that have direct antimicrobial activity, and these proteins can differ among plant species.

to aid in limiting the transmission of PVY in our experiments.


% Incidence 3.10%



oz wt/a




1.78 2

oz wt/a % v/v




LifeGard Aphoil

1.78 4

oz wt/a % v/v







% v/v







% v/v





Actigard Aphoil

0.75 2

oz wt/a % v/v





Actigard Aphoil

1 2

oz wt/a % v/v




0.162 0.199 BC�T March 49

New Products

LifeGard® WG Biological Plant Activator Is Foliar Applied and available on the market for use on potatoes, sugar beets, fruiting vegetables and pecans.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has registered LifeGard® WG, the first foliar-applied biological plant activator available on the market, for use on potatoes, sugar beets, fruiting vegetables, pecans and other specialty agricultural crops to control diseases. Introduced by the biopesticide company, Certis USA, LifeGard is a naturally occurring bacterium that triggers an induced systemic resistance (ISR) response in plants. This ISR response mode of action reflects a new direction taken by a pesticide market that has rapidly increased its demand for biopesticides because they offer efficacy, as well as resistance management materials, low residue levels and crop and worker safety. LifeGard is NOP (National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances) approved and OMRI® (Organic Materials Review Institute) listed, it is residue exempt, it has a four-hour REI (Restricted Entry Interval), can be applied the day of harvest and the product is bee safe. Tim Damico, Certis USA’s executive V.P.-NAFTA, said, “LifeGard represents a new class of biological disease control agents. As our field development program expands, and as the trial data accumulate, we are amazed by the spectrum of efficacy and market potential of LifeGard.” The active ingredient of LifeGard is a naturally occurring bacterium (Bacillus mycoides isolate J) shown by discoverer Prof. Barry Jacobsen, Ph.D. 50 BC�T March

of Montana State University to trigger a plant’s natural immune response to pathogenic fungi, bacteria and viruses in the phenomenon known as ISR. As Jacobsen explained, plants respond to initial detection of potentially pathogenic microorganisms by “switching on” resistance genes, causing a cascade of metabolic responses to limit infection and disease development. While some microbial biofungicides have been reported to also have moderate ISR activity, LifeGard is unique in that it works entirely as a microbial ISR activator with no direct antagonistic effect on plant pathogens. LifeGard induces the same genetic resistance pathway as the class of chemical ISR inducers known as benzothiadiazoles, but for longer periods and with lower risk of phytotoxicity. These characteristics make LifeGard a valuable tool for use in fungicide resistance management programs. REDUCED FUNGICIDE RESISTANCE “Because LifeGard acts so differently from most fungicides, with no direct action against a specific pathogen target site, it has great potential for use in disease management programs designed to reduce the risk and consequences of fungicide resistance,” Damico said. “In fact, Dr. Jacobsen’s fieldwork over the past decade has already demonstrated the utility of LifeGard in programs for management of fungicide-resistant

Cercospora leaf spot in sugar beets, for example.” LifeGard has been found to be compatible with a wide range of pesticides, including Triazole, EDBC and QoI class fungicides, and a wide range of insecticides, making it ideal for use in IPM programs. Certis USA found disease control to be equal to commercial standards when LifeGard is used in combination with low rates of fungicides or in alternating programs. Certis USA partnered with Montana State University-Bozeman and Montana BioAgriculture Inc. of Missoula in a global license agreement to develop, manufacture and commercialize the LifeGard technology worldwide on a wide range of crops and diseases. Certis USA was selected to manufacture and market LifeGard because of its expertise in fermentation (in its Wasco, California facility), downstream processing and formulation of biopesticides. Headquartered in Columbia, Maryland, Certis USA is a leading manufacturer and distributor of a broad line of biopesticide products for specialty agricultural and horticultural markets and the home and garden market. Certis USA products provide valuable solutions by meeting the challenges faced by today’s growers who are seeking sustainable alternatives, resistant pest management and harvest solutions, and low pesticide residues for market flexibility and export accessibility. For more information about Certis USA or its products visit www.CertisUSA.com.

AG Systems Introduces Low-Profile Nurse Wagon with heavy-duty leaf spring, 1615 or 2015 drainable leg tank and plumbing options available. track and a 7-inch-by-3-inch tubular steel frame. The AG 116 Drainable Nurse Wagon also sports heavy-duty 3-inch leaf springs, an adjustable clevis hitch, four-wheel hydraulic surge brakes and a 4-inch-by-4-inch pole jack. It comes with DOT safety changes and a 4-foot storage rack.

From AG Systems, Inc., comes the AG 116 Drainable Nurse Wagon, a low-profile unit that includes eight-bolt hubs and spindles and a

24,000-pound GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight Rating). The 24-foot Nurse Wagon boasts 15-inch axle clearance, an 86-inch center-to-center wheel

Steel deck plating, a swing-open gate, 10-ply highway tires, a lights package and a 1,685-gallon drainable polyleg tank round out the unit, with an optional pump package and chemical storage rack available. For more information about the AG 116 Drainable Nurse Wagon, contact AG Systems, Inc., 1180 State Hwy. 7 East, Hutchinson, MN 55350. Call 800-328-5866 or visit www.agsystemsonline.com.

Valley Irrigation Brings Smart Center Pivot Irrigation Control via the new ICON series of smart panels featuring full-color touchscreen interface. Valley Irrigation, the leader in irrigation technology, brings the smartest center pivot irrigation available today with the new ICON series of smart panels. No matter the field, no matter the pivot, the ICON family has a solution for every need. Whether you’re buying a new center pivot, upgrading your existing irrigation panel or changing over from another brand of pivot, you’ll experience a new level of technology while operating an intuitive, full-color touchscreen interface. There are no more formulas or multiple steps to remember, as the easy touchscreen guides you through irrigation monitoring and control in simple fashion.

Intelligent interface allows for quick entry of commands and settings. The center pivot menus and dashboard provide easy navigation and at-a-glance status identification. Edge-of-field WiFi gives you full control from the edge of your field via a localized signal from the Valley ICON10™ or ICON1™ smart panel. ICON smart panels come equipped with AgSense® ICON Link to control and monitor your irrigation. Get seamless management of your center pivot through the AgSense app or desktop interface. Available in 10- or 5-inch full-color touchscreen displays, the Valley ICON smart panels feature: • Intuitive interface

• AgSense enabled • BaseStation3 compatible •V ariable rate irrigation (VRI) equipped • Cable theft monitoring • Edge-of-Field WiFi available Valley Irrigation is the worldwide leader in precision irrigation. The Valley brand of center pivot, linear and corner equipment provides solutions for conserving water and meeting the growing demand for food. Contact Valley Irrigation, 28800 Ida St., Valley, NE 68064. Call 402-359.2201 or email irrigation@ valmont.com. BC�T March 51

NPC News Potato Growers Make Voices Heard NPC hosts the 2017 Potato D.C. Fly-In February 13-16 The National Potato Council (NPC) hosted the 2017 Potato D.C. Fly-In February 13-16, where more than 150 U.S. potato growers and agricultural partners from across the country advocated for the industry’s most pressing federal policy priorities. Growers visited Capitol Hill and met with federal regulators at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). During their Hill visits, growers urged Congress to address key industry issues including: immigration reform, potato breeding

research funding, regulatory reform, international trade policy and pesticide regulations. Reps. Suzan DelBene (D-WA) and Dan Newhouse (R-WA) spoke to attendees during the week, in addition to political analysts Dr. Larry Sabato and Charlie Cook. Industry experts on tax, Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) disclosure and the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) also addressed the general sessions. They were followed by senior Senate Agriculture and Appropriations Committee staff who focused

Above: Political analysts Dr. Larry Sabato (left, holding up his book A More Perfect Constitution) and Charlie Cook (right), both of whom provide election projections, were keynote speakers at the D.C. Fly-In, February 13-16, in Washington, D.C.

on the 2018 Farm Bill and key spending issues that may affect the potato industry this year. The week concluded with growers making visits to the EPA and USDA to hear from agency officials. View photos from the week on the NPC Facebook page, www.facebook.com/pg/ nationalpotatocouncil/.

Pesticide Bills Move Forward in House The House Agriculture Committee unanimously passed the Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2017 (HR 953) on Thursday, February 16. The bill would clarify that federal law does not require redundant and unfairly burdensome NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permits for already regulated 52 BC�T March

pesticide applications. NPDES permits are required when applicators make pesticide applications directly to what are defined as “Waters of the U.S.” in the Clean Water Act, an unnecessary step based on the proper application directed from EPA-approved labels

on all pesticides. The House of Representatives previously passed the NPDES clarification in the 113th and 114th Congressional sessions, but it was unable to gain the necessary 60 votes in the Senate. This year, Sens. Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Claire McCaskill (D-MO) have

introduced a companion version to HR 953 and are working to ensure it is successful on the Senate floor. The House Ag Committee also passed H.R. 1029, the Pesticide Registration Enhancement Act, which reauthorizes the Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA). PRIA was intended to create a more predictable and effective evaluation

process for affected pesticide decisions by coupling the collection of fees from pesticide registrants with specific decision review periods. It also promoted a shorter decision review period for reduced-risk pesticides. PRIA has been reauthorized three times, with the most recent reauthorization set to expire on September 30, 2017. In addition to

extending provisions, the bill adjusts fee amounts, increases transparency, encourages Good Laboratory Practices and adds flexibility to the use of collected fees. NPC is a strong supporter of both important pieces of legislation and is encouraging swift action in the House and Senate to send them to the President’s desk.

EPA Administrator Confirmed by Senate The Senate voted February 17 to confirm Scott Pruitt as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. A former Attorney General for the State of Oklahoma, Pruitt has promised a broad regulatory reset of the Agency.

Analysts of the agency believe he will swiftly move to modify regulations that broadly concern the agriculture industry. Right: Scott Pruitt was confirmed by the Senate as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.

It takes a lifetime to build a farm. But just a few short weeks or months after you’re gone the whole thing could be gone. Which is why planning for your succession calls for a legal partner that understands farming, and farmers. Contact Ruder Ware and talk with one of our experienced ag attorneys. They understand that your farm is not just a business, it’s the accomplishment of a lifetime.

wausau | eau claire ruderware.com ruderware.com visit our blogs at blueinklaw.com

BC�T March 53

WPIB Focus

Nominations Accepted for Wisconsin Potato Industry Board Of the positions that are currently open, all three incumbent WPIB reps plan to run again Potato growers in three Wisconsin Potato Industry Board (WPIB) districts have until April 1, 2017 to nominate three members to the industry’s market order board. Districts 1, 2 and 3 potato growers are eligible to nominate board members or to be nominated. Growers can find nomination forms online at datcp.wi.gov. Click on the “Growing Wisconsin” tab, then “Market Orders and Boards” and on the link for the potato board. Eligible growers also can request nomination forms by contacting Market Orders Program Manager Debbie Gegare at 608-2245116 or Debbie.Gegare@Wisconsin.gov.

Marketing Order Program, P.O. Box 8911, Madison, WI 53708-8911. The forms must be postmarked on or before April 1, 2017. Of the positions that are currently open for reelection, all three incumbent WPIB representatives plan to run again. They are Tom Wild of Wild Seed Farms, Inc., Antigo (District 1), Bill Wysocki of Paragon Potato Farms, Bancroft (District 2) and Heidi Alsum-Randall of Alsum Farms & Produce, Inc., Friesland (District 3). The open positions represent the following counties:

Each nomination form must include signatures of at least five eligible potato growers, other than the nominee, from the district in which the nominee is running for office. An Affidavit of Eligibility is located on the nomination form and must be completed and notarized.

District 1: Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Brown, Burnett, Chippewa, Clark, Door, Douglas, Dunn, Eau Claire, Florence, Forest, Iron, Kewaunee, Langlade, Lincoln, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Oneida, Pepin, Pierce, Polk, Price, Rusk, Sawyer, St. Croix, Taylor, Vilas and Washburn counties.

Completed forms must be sent to: Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection,

District 2: Marathon, Outagamie, Portage, Shawano, Waupaca and Waushara counties.

Above: The 2016 Wisconsin Potato Industry Board includes, in the front row, from left to right, Treasurer Keith Wolter, President Heidi AlsumRandall, Vice President Dick Okray and Secretary Bill Wysocki; and back row, left to right, Directors John Bobek, Tom Wild and John T. Schroeder. Inset photos are WPIB Board Directors Andy Diercks (left) and Cliff Gagas (right).

District 3: Adams, Buffalo, Calumet, Columbia, Crawford, Dane, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Grant, Green, Green Lake, Iowa, Jackson, Jefferson, Juneau, Kenosha, La Crosse, Lafayette, Manitowoc, Marquette, Milwaukee, Monroe, Ozaukee, Racine, Richland, Rock, Sauk, Sheboygan, Trempealeau, Vernon, Walworth, Washington, Waukesha, Winnebago and Wood counties. The Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection will conduct the WPIB election from May 15 to June 10. Elected board members will serve from July 1, 2017 to June 20, 2020. The nine-member board is responsible for collecting and allocating about $1.75 million in annual assessment fees paid by Wisconsin potato growers. The money is used to support the industry through research, market development and consumer education.

Wisconsin Potato Assessment Collections: Two-Year Comparison Month
































































54 BC�T March


By Dana Rady, WPVGA Director of Promotions and Consumer Education

Spudmobile Warms up Attendees at Wausau Winterfest It was another frigid year on the 400 block in Wausau during the 2017 Winterfest, January 28, but the Spudmobile did a good job of warming up those who came inside and educating them about Wisconsin

potatoes at the same time! With the Spudmobile having a prime location positioned directly in front of the Grand Theater, Winterfest featured all things “wintery,” from

snow and ice sculptures to ice skating, a snow slide and, of course, information on America’s favorite vegetable to warm everyone up! Some even warmed up with a loaded baked potato thanks to a donation from Bushman Associates. Although the event is during the heart of Wisconsin’s winter, there was no Jack Frost keeping families from having a good time! It’s truly a blessing to have a vehicle that operates 12 months out of the year and one that is able to continue spreading word of Wisconsin potatoes and the importance of buying local to the public. Above: Like looking into and through a frosty window, ice sculptures frame the Spudmobile at the 2017 Wausau Winterfest on January 28. Left: Frigid temperatures couldn’t stop the fun inside the Spudmobile at the 2017 Wausau Winterfest, January 28, with kids playing the “bug game” on the interactive touch table. BC�T March 55

Be a “Destination Employer”

Growers and ag companies often mention how difficult it is to recruit and retain good help By Mark Waschek, vice president, agronomy, Ag 1 Source When business managers talk about being one of the best, they often think in terms of profit, customer perception and quality of service. Unfortunately, the ultimate measurement of being the best is rarely considered. The perception of your organization as an employer by both current and future employees is perhaps one of the most overlooked measurements of success in any organization. Your company’s ability to attract, hire and retain talented employees is one of the most critical components of your business. Organizations that have focused on this aspect of their 56 BC�T March

business have grown into what we call “Destination Employers.” These are organizations that both potential and current employees refer to as some of the best places you can work—the ultimate destinations for your career. Here is a high-level summary of what is being accomplished in each of these areas for organizations to be considered Destination Employers. We have found one significant similarity among all organizations that are perceived as being Destination Employers within their marketplace. That common thread

is that, in each of these companies, the management team is constantly focused on, and participating in, three primary activities: • Hiring • Retention • Employee Engagement Additionally, these organizations have taken each of those activities one step further by involving all of the employees in the company with three other critical components: Above: While there are many reasons that will cause a good employee to become disengaged and leave an organization, many of those issues could have been prevented with better communication. Right: Mark Waschek is the vice president of agronomy at Ag 1 Source, a recruiting firm in the agriculture industry.

• Onboarding • Communication • Recruiting A PROVEN DESIGN Think of the Destination Employer model as a three-legged stool. The three-legged stool is a simple, efficient and effective tool that has been used for centuries. Its ability to out-perform other designs in areas of unevenness and inconsistency has made it popular for many things in our lives such as milking stools and camera tripods. The human resource component of your operation is very similar. As with the milking stool, your human resource activities need to perform as well as possible in a very complicated and uncertain environment. Note the picture of the stool. There are three distinct legs in the Destination Employer model. In this model, hiring, retention and employee engagement each need to perform equally to work. If not, there is no way your program can operate at a high level, and may collapse altogether if each leg isn’t performing at an equal rate. Even the strongest and best of programs needs additional support and strength to maintain growth. Again, refer to the picture of the stool. Recruiting, onboarding and communication are smaller, but equally-as-important functions of this stool.

What only the best companies recognize is that regardless of how good you feel that your recruiting and retention is, it will never be as good as it can be without an equal amount of time and money invested in an onboarding program. Without good onboarding, people will become easily frustrated or disgruntled over matters that should be insignificant. Unhappy employees leave quickly, which directly impacts the image of your company and your

Above: A solid base, like that of a three-legged stool, is essential in becoming a Destination Employer—a company that potential employees seek out as an ideal place to begin a career. Hiring, retention and engagement are the three solid legs of the stool, and each needs to perform equally to work.

continued on pg. 58

AG 1000 Liquid Nurse Wagon 5 Year Frame Warranty


Gal. Model Also Available


• Low Profile • 72” Wheel Track ( Center to Center ) • 2” x 6’ Tubular Frame • 14,000# Capacity • Heavy Duty Leaf Springs • Safety Chains D.O.T. Approved.

• Bulldog Jack • 11L x 15 Tires 8 Ply • Axle Clearance 11 Inches • Adjustable Clevis • 1000 Gal. Poly Tank w/Center Sump • 3 Year Tank Warranty

Stop by and place your order now!







2000 TYLER MT24


1996 TYLER M16




These are the braces or “stringers” that keep the program from collapsing under its own weight.

2012 CASE IH 4430

2009 AGCO SS884


Here is how everything works together:

2006 CASE IH 4410


2001 CASE IH 4260


Onboarding. While onboarding isn’t necessarily overlooked by employers, it’s quite often not given enough effort. In most situations, a week of training, a few days with a co-worker or even a simple meeting with a supervisor is all that is offered to many retail agronomy employees.



2011 AGCO 1396



2011 CASE IH 3520




2007 CASE IH 4020


2008 AGCO 8244






4180 ReaRdon Rd., deFoRest WI 53532

800-523-2350 BC�T March 57

Be A Destination Employer. . . continued from pg. 57

ability to recruit. Or worse, unhappy employees become disengaged and stay onboard, leaving you with unproductive and potentially demotivating situations for their coworkers. Onboarding is the brace that supports your investment in recruiting and employee retention. Communication. While there are many reasons that will cause a good employee to become disengaged and leave an organization, many of those issues could have been prevented with better communication. In fact, research has proven that nearly 70 percent of people leave their jobs because of issues that could have been prevented with better communication from their supervisor and/or the overall organization. Companies that don’t put ongoing effort into improving communication with their employees won’t have a leg to stand on when it comes time to invest in employee retention and engagement. Recruiting. The importance of effective recruiting in the hiring process is easy to see. However, what the best companies recognize is that their hiring program is only as good their overall employee engagement will allow. 58 BC�T March

In short, your ability to attract talented people is only as good as your employees’ ability to speak highly of the company … when they are not at work! In our business, we often hear that everything is great. Companies explain how they always have conversations surrounding engagement and overall happiness with their employees. A MATTER OF TIMING Unfortunately, many of those conversations also happen in the same timeframe as annual reviews or the delivery of a bonus. Think about that—do you expect an employee to complain right after (or especially right before) you discuss their financial future? We couldn’t care less about what employees are telling you in those types of situations. What we want to know, and what should be a number one concern, is what are your employees saying to their friends about your organization after 5 p.m. on a Friday? If an individual is targeted as a

Left: Your company’s ability to attract, hire and retain talented employees is one of the most critical components of your business. Right: Companies that don’t put ongoing effort into improving communication with their employees won’t have a leg to stand on when it comes time to invest in employee retention and engagement.

potential employee and happens to bump into one of your employees at a Saturday evening social function, how will your current employee respond to the questions, “How do you like your job?” and, “What’s it like to work there?” The concept of Destination Employer is easy to understand, but incredibly challenging to implement. The ability to grow your company into being perceived as the employer of choice in your market is entirely dependent on the ability of your entire organization to implement and participate in each of the six critical components. From hourly/seasonal employees on up to the CEO, everyone affects your ability to become a true Destination Employer.


Bolte Wins Wisconsin Top Crop Advisor Award Chuck Bolte of AgSource Laboratories named 2016 Wisconsin CCA of the Year

AgSource Laboratories is proud to congratulate Chuck Bolte on being named the 2016 Wisconsin Certified Crop Advisor (CCA) of the Year. Bolte was officially presented with his CCA of the Year Award on Tuesday, January 10, just prior to the Wisconsin Agribusiness Classic, held at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison. The Wisconsin CCA Board has also nominated Chuck for the International CCA of the Year award for 2017. Bolte, from Deerbrook, works as a nutrient management planner (NMP) and oversees the GPS and NMP staff at AgSource. He has maintained CCA status for the past 15 years. “Chuck is an exceptional team member. He gives 110 percent effort to the clients and farms that he works with and to AgSource,” notes Steve Peterson, AgSource Laboratories vice president of laboratory services. “His efforts don’t go unnoticed by the clients.” Bolte uses his extensive knowledge of nutrient applications and crop production to help growers maximize

yield, while also protecting the environment. He’s continually challenging growers to improve and try new technologies. FIELD & STAFF SUPERVISOR Bolte works with vegetable, dairy and cash grain farms throughout the state of Wisconsin. In addition, he oversees nine AgSource field staff, as well as mentoring and training younger staff members. “I believe nutrient management is a critical component of any farm operation,” says Bolte. “My goal is to make sure growers really understand the document they receive and know how to use the information.” When he’s not working, Bolte is active gardening, taking care of his orchard, hunting and fishing. He has a passion for mentoring youth in hunting and fishing, and in general sharing what the outdoors has to offer. Bolte is a Farm Bureau member as well as a member and long-time, active committee member of the Wisconsin Association of Professional Ag Consultants (WAPAC).

Top: AgSource co-workers congratulate Chuck Bolte on being named the 2016 Wisconsin Certified Crop Advisor (CCA) of the Year. From left to right are Tim Boerner, Chris Clark, Steve Peterson, Chuck Bolte, Pat Baier and Haily Henderson. Right: Jeff Osterhaus (right), Wisconsin CCA Board chairman, presents Chuck Bolte (left) with the 2016 CCA of the Year Award.

AgSource is a leader in agricultural and environmental laboratory analysis and information management services. A subsidiary of Cooperative Resources International, AgSource provides services to clients in the United States and across the globe. Learn more at www.AgSource.com. continued on pg. 60 BC�T March 59

People. . . continued from pg. 59

Ryan Companies Hires Toby Veit as Capital Markets Director Ryan Companies U.S., Inc., which has extensive experience in developing food processing and distribution facilities across the country, hires Toby Veit as director of capital markets in the Chicago office. Veit, a UW-Madison graduate, will be responsible for capitalizing Ryan projects and assets, developing and maintaining debt and equity relationships, sourcing and

evaluating value-add acquisitions and structuring joint ventures. Veit comes to Ryan from GGP where he was a director of development. His 12 years of experience in real estate development, investment analysis and acquisitions will benefit Ryan and its customers in navigating the real estate capital markets. “We are excited to add Toby’s broad

Above: UW-Madison graduate Toby Veit is the new director of capital markets in the Chicago office of Ryan Companies. In 2016, Ryan Companies partnered with The Little Potato Company on building a processing facility in Deforest, Wisconsin.

based talent and experience to our team,” said Dan Levitt, senior vice president, capital markets for Ryan. “He will play a central role in executing our capital markets requirements and opportunities in multiple Ryan offices.” Veit has completed over $1 billion in transactions over his career, with notable projects including a $330 million sale-leaseback with Sears and joint-venture with Seritage, as well as the development of the eastern portfolio of the Seritage JV. Veit earned his MBA in Finance, Management & Strategy from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and his BBA in Real Estate and Urban Land Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

60” Milestone Seed Cutter Used and Ready to go for Spring! Call Sand County Equipment today for details. Contact Paul Cieslewicz


• Full service potato and tillage equipment dealer • Custom made hydraulic hose assemblies • Fully equipped service truck for on-site repair

8364 Monica Road • Bancroft, WI • Fax: 715-335-6653 60 BC�T March

He is a member of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC), the Wisconsin Real Estate Alumni Association (WREAA) and the National Association of Industrial and Office Parks (NAIOP). About Ryan Companies U.S., Inc. Ryan Companies U.S., Inc. is a national developer, designer, capital investment consultant, builder and real estate manager specializing in fully integrated solutions for more than 75 years. For more information, visit www.ryancompanies.com.

POTATOES USA NEWS School Foodservices Encouraged to “Wake Up with Potatoes!” Busy weekday mornings make it a challenge for families to find time for a healthy breakfast. However, U.S. Department of Agriculture data shows that more students are starting their day with a nutritious breakfast in their school cafeterias.

sponsor the NSBW—the first time any organization besides Kellogg’s has been a sponsor! Potatoes USA is now able to influence thousands of schools across the country and become a recognized source for information and recipes.

To encourage more families to take advantage of the healthy choices available with school breakfast, schools are recognizing National School Breakfast Week (NSBW) March 6-10, 2017.


Potatoes USA is taking breakfast a step further by encouraging cafeterias to include potatoes at this very crucial meal. Starting the day with potatoes can help students power their performance throughout the day, keeping them feeling fuller longer, which keeps focus in the classroom. Potatoes USA has partnered with the School Nutrition Association to

School foodservice operators are encouraged to get creative in the kitchen with fresh, frozen and/ or dehydrated potatoes. Potatoes USA is inviting school foodservice professionals across the country to submit their most creative, potatocentric school breakfast recipes to the “Wake Up with Potatoes!” recipe contest. Interested school foodservice professionals can visit www. potatogoodness.com/school-foodservice and enter their favorite school breakfast recipes and photos featuring fresh, frozen or dehydrated

Steps Can Create More Fresh Potato Access to Mexico On January 13, SAGARPA, the Agriculture Department of Mexico, published on their website the Pest Risk Assessment for U.S. potatoes and the Requirement Sheet for the import of U.S. potatoes beyond the 26-kilometer border zone. SAGARPA and APHIS (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service) must still clearly define the process by which imports will be allowed and exports executed. Growers and shippers in the United States and

importers and retailers in Mexico will need to consult with APHIS and SAGARPA, respectively, to understand the exact requirements. It is also still being determined if any previous legal actions taken by the Mexican growers will prevent actual imports. The publication of this new set of rules to facilitate the movement of U.S. fresh potatoes to Mexico is an important and very positive step in a 15-year process to gain access

potatoes by March 31 for a chance to win a $500 gift card or a Sunkist Commercial Sectionizer (a $250 value). Potatoes are a popular vegetable in school cafeterias as they are costeffective, nutritious and students love them. Potatoes also deliver an unbeatable return on investment for school foodservice programs to meet the vegetable requirement for reimbursement, including the USDA’s School Breakfast Program, which serves more than 14 million children every school day. Please share the contest information with your state school representatives and look forward to more delicious breakfast potato recipes to come. For more information on the Potatoes USA School Foodservice program contact Rachael Lynch at rachael@potatoesusa.com.

to all areas of Mexico. It will be necessary for SAGARPA to publish a permanent decree to formalize the expanded market access. Publication of that decree should occur in 60 to 90 days. Until the publication of that document, the requirements published January 13 will govern potato shipments to Mexico beyond the 26-kilometer zone. Growers and shippers in the U.S. should also be aware that interruptions of potato trade to Mexico could be possible if the filing of any additional lawsuits results in injunctions to stop implementation of the requirements. BC�T March 61

Auxiliary News By Ali Carter, Vice President, WPGA

This year ushers in a few changes

to the Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary (WPGA), including new board members. A focus of the Auxiliary in recent years has been to reach out and connect members and people in the industry with the intent to strengthen the organization and build community. Building community means getting to know those around you and realizing the commonalities and differences between each of us and how those details help to bond us and move our organization forward. This is why I am quite pleased to introduce one of our newest WPGA board members, Marie Reed. Marie has been an auxiliary member for a number of years and has offered skills and time while volunteering at community and promotional events. Marie brings with her business experience and a drive to build on the ideas of those before her on the board. Here is a brief bio on Marie, and then more background below in her own words: Name: Marie Reed Company: James Burns and Sons Farms Location: Almond, WI Hometown: Almond, WI Current Residence: Plainfield, WI Crops Grown/Acreage: Potatoes/1,000, snap beans/2,800, sweet corn/1,000, field corn/2,000, peas/700 Schooling: Fox Valley Technical 62 BC�T March

College, degree in culinary arts Activities/Organizations: Wisconsin Air Force Academy Parents Association Family: Husband, Daniel Reid; son, Clayton (23), 2nd Lt. in the Air Force, currently in pilot training at Vance Air Force Base in Enid, OK; son, Darin (21), senior at UW-Madison majoring in food science; son, Lyle (18), freshman at Fox Valley Technical College in the lab science program; daughter, Sophie (14), freshman at Tri-County High School; daughter, Lena (13), 7th grade at Tri-County Middle School “I was the food service director for the Tri-County Area School District for 22 years, retiring in 2012. Currently, I own my own business, Marie’s Picnic Basket, a soup, sandwich and pie wagon stationed at the Plainfield Flower Garden Park in downtown Plainfield operating seasonally.” “I have been open for eight seasons. I enjoy traveling and attending my children's events.”

Above: The WPGA welcomes Marie Reed, who has been an auxiliary member for a number of years and offered skills and time while volunteering, as the newest board member.

“I joined the WPGA to help promote our potato industry through education. I feel the activities the WPGA has been involved in are very useful and effective. I have been going to the State Fair to help with the potato booth for many years.” “While on the board, I would like to continue to support the efforts of prior board members in the activities that they have founded.”

Eyes on Associates By WPVGA Outgoing Associate Div. President, Wayne Solinsky, Jay-Mar, Inc.

Greetings everyone and farewell, This will be my last column that I write as President of the WPVGA Associate Division, and it comes with bittersweet feelings. I have enjoyed reaching out to all of you and sharing updates on Associate Division activities, as well as some of my thoughts and experiences along the way. It has been a fast four years that I have served you as an Associate Division Board committee member, and I have met a lot of great people along the way. It is and will be the close ties with great people and seeing everyone during committee meetings that I’ll miss the most. I know without a doubt that I will carry these friendships with me for many years to come, and along the way, form new bonds. In time, I hope to be able to serve you again. Our Grower Education Conference & Industry Show went extremely well. Attendance was good and the Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association reception was fantastic— one of the most well-attended seed receptions that I can remember. We went through appetizers and refreshments like there was no tomorrow, and it was wonderful to see the turnout. BRINGING VALUE TO AG Our “Bringing Value to Agriculture” breakout session, where we allowed select exhibitors five minutes apiece to educate attendees on their businesses and why they bring value to the industry, was a success. But I think in the future we need to direct more grower attendees to the session

Above: Held during the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show, the annual election for the WPVGA Associate Division Board saw two incumbents seeking reelection—Cathy Schommer of Badgerland Financial and Joel Zalewski of Insight FS, both of whom kept their board seats for another two years—and two members departing after having completed two terms, including Board President Wayne Solinsky of Jay-Mar, Inc. and Dale Bowe from Wisconsin Public Service. The new Board, shown from left to right, is Nick Laudenbach (Fencil Urethane Systems), Zach Mykisen (Big Iron Equipment), Kenton Mehlberg (T.I.P.), Sally Suprise (Ansay & Associates), Casey Kedrowski (Roberts Irrigation), Joel Zalewski (Insight FS), Cathy Schommer (Badgerland Financial) and Pauly Cieslewicz (Sand County Equipment).

to help make it worthwhile for the presenting vendors. It would be appropriate to have more time for each Bringing Value to Ag session and more time between sessions to be able to reach a fuller audience. That is still a work in progress. Our Wednesday evening banquet was well attended and WPVGA Executive

Director Tamas Houlihan did an amazing job running the program as usual. Thanks, Tamas. We awarded $2,000 in prizes during the evening’s entertainment—Piano Fondue—and the winners were truly grateful. After elections held during the Industry Show, the Associate Division Board, including two new members, continued on pg. 64

John Deere Equipment & Precision Farming Solutions

Understanding your needs and providing equipment, technology, and support to keep you in the field.

BC�T March 63

Eyes on Associates. . . continued from pg. 63

is as follows: President: Sally Suprise, Ansay & Associates Vice President: Casey Kedrowski, Roberts Irrigation Treasurer: Nick Laudenbach, Fencil Urethane Systems Secretary: Cathy Schommer, Badgerland Financial Joel Zalewski, Insight FS Zach Mykisen, Big Iron Equipment Paul Cieslewicz, Sand County Equipment (newly elected) Kenton Mehlberg, T.I.P. (newly elected) If you get the opportunity, reach out and thank these great individuals and other board and committee members for their commitment to serve all of you. Also, thank the management of their companies for allowing them to serve. Without their support, we would not have such a great group of people to help make this Industry as good as it is. As newly elected Associate Division president, Sally will continue the Eyes on Associates column to fill you in on news and events, including how much money the Avis M. Wysocki Memorial

Left: WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan (right) presented Dale Bowe (left) of Wisconsin Public Service a plaque of recognition for Dale’s years of dedicated service on the Associate Division Board of Directors. Dale was honored at a luncheon during the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show, Feb. 7-9, in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. Right: It is no longer necessary for Wayne Solinsky (left) to “enforce the gavel” as President of the WPVGA Associate Division, having served two terms and graciously accepted his plaque from WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan (right) commemorating a job well done.

Silent Auction generated this year and providing final attendance numbers for the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show. She will do a great job as president. I want to thank everyone involved for the Associate Division Business Person of the Year and Outgoing President awards I received at the Industry Show. They are greatly appreciated. I feel honored, blessed and humbled for these honors. It has been my absolute pleasure and fortune to have been able to serve all of you in this great Industry. I thank all of you for the opportunity.

The WPVGA Associate Division is here to help the industry, so if you have any questions, comments, ideas or concerns, please contact Sally or any of our board members so they can better try to assist and provide the best representation for you, our members. Thanks for reading, be safe, be happy, and most of all, be content. There is no better place to be than at peace with yourself. As always, from me to all of you, peace be with you,

Wayne Solinsky

Associate Division Raises $26,050 for Water Task Force Research & Education Fund WPVGA Associate Division Board fulfills promise to match up to first $25,000 contributed by associate members Citing the importance of research and public education when it comes to issues surrounding water use in Wisconsin, the WPVGA Associate Division Board took it upon itself to conduct a fundraising campaign among all members. The Associate Division Board 64 BC�T March

promised to match up to the first $25,000 raised, and exceeded its goal with $26,050 in total contributions to the Water Task Force (WTF) Research & Education Fund. With the Associate Division Board’s $25,000 match, the total contribution to the WTF fund is $51,050.

Above: During the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show, outgoing Associate Division Board President Wayne Solinsky (right) presented Water Task Force (WTF) committee member Nick Somers (left) with a check for $51,050 ($26,050 contributed by Associate Division members and $25,000 matched by the Associate Division Board) toward the WTF Research & Education Fund.

Ali's Kitchen Bacon Blue Cheese Potato Skins with Bourbon Crème Column and photos by Ali Carter, Vice President, WPGA Auxiliary It is the beautiful month of March! Not only does this mean that we are closer to spring, but it also means that we celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day. And because of this, I was certain that I was going to share a recipe worthy of Saint Patty’s Day with all of you—maybe an Irish potato stew or perhaps my (green) kale mashed potatoes? However, I couldn’t get these potato skins out of my head. And although these little appetizers cannot be associated with the March holiday in any way, I believe that they are so good that I simply couldn’t wait one more month to share them with you! This recipe developed one afternoon while I was puttering in the kitchen using up items that we had on hand and became our dinner that evening.

Serve them with a salad and some bread and they are quite a filling meal. My little family (very honest taste testers and tough critics) took their first bites and announced to me that they were delicious! They insisted that I write down the recipe right away. And so, I am pleased to present them to you. And if you want to get creative and use an Irish whiskey in place of the bourbon, I think that this could then fairly be called a Saint Patrick’s Day recipe. There are a number of steps to this recipe, but I promise you that each one is simple and many of them can be done in advance if you plan to make these as an appetizer for a gathering. Enjoy.

continued on pg. 66

Bacon Blue Cheese Potato Skins with Bourbon Crème Tips: • Prepare the potato skin shells first. Most potato skin recipes call for baking the whole potato and then slicing in half and removing the middles. By scooping out the insides first and then baking as I direct you here, you are left with deliciously seasoned and crispy shells that hold the filling better! • While potato skins are baking in the oven, begin to prepare the Bourbon Crème to allow the onions time to cool before mixing them with the other ingredients for garnishing the finished potato skins. • Save the insides of the potato that you scoop out of the shells. I fried those up in butter the next morning and topped them with a couple sunny-side-up eggs for my husband’s breakfast. Yum! Just store them in a bowl of water overnight in the fridge to keep them from turning brown. • Makes 12 potato skins

PREPARING THE POTATO SKIN SHELLS INGREDIENTS: 6 yellow potatoes (I used Yukon Gold (any size you wish, however it is best to keep them fairly similar in size so that they cook evenly.) 1/3 cup vegetable oil 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Instructions: Preheat the oven to 450°F. Scrub the potatoes and slice them in half lengthwise. Using a spoon, scoop out the middle of each potato, leaving a ¼-inch border. Repeat until all the potatoes have been scooped out. In a small bowl, combine the oil, salt and pepper. Brush the oil mixture on the inside and outside of each potato skin shell. Place them skin-side-up on a large baking sheet. Bake the potato skin shells for approximately 15 minutes or until they are just fork tender. The time will vary based on how thick you leave the shells and how large your potatoes are. Remove them from the oven and let cool slightly before adding your fillings. BC�T March 65

Drizzle with a few shakes of Tabasco sauce if you like a little bit of spice! Serve warm.

Ali's Kitchen. . . continued from pg. 65




4-5 strips of bacon, chopped into bite-size pieces and cooked crispy 1 cup blue cheese crumbles ½ cup shredded mozzarella 1-2 green onions sliced for garnish Bourbon Crème (recipe below) Tabasco sauce (optional)


Instructions: Lower oven temp to 350 degrees F. Flip the prepared potato skins so they are skin-side down on a large cookie sheet. Fill each shell with the blue cheese and mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle the bacon over each potato skin. Place the potato skins in the oven and bake for about 10-15 minutes or until the cheese is melted and just starting to brown. Remove the potato skins from the oven. Place a dollop of the Bourbon Crème onto each potato and sprinkle with green onions.

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 1/2 red onion finely chopped 1/4 cup bourbon 3/4 cup sour cream 1 teaspoon honey 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

Instructions: Heat the olive oil in small sauté pan. Add the red onions and cook for a minute or two, then carefully add the bourbon. Use caution when adding the bourbon because it can flame up! Sauté the onions for about 5 minutes more to allow them to become soft and the alcohol to cook off. Set the onions aside to cool slightly. In a small bowl, combine the sour cream, honey and mustard. Mix well.

Advertisers Index AG Systems - BBI Javelin................. 17 AG Systems - Liquid Nurse Wagon... 57 Badgerland Financial.................... 26 Big Iron Equipment....................... 11 BTU Ventilation............................. 41 Calcium Products............................ 5 Certis USA..................................... 25 CliftonLarsonAllen........................ 30 Compass Minerals........................ 19 CPS Great Lakes............................ 13 David J. Fleischman Farms............ 45 Fencil Urethane Systems................ 9 GZA Environmental....................... 31 J.W. Mattek................................... 35 Jay-Mar......................................... 39 K&K Material Handling................. 43 Mid-State Truck............................ 23 Nelson’s Vegetable Storage Systems Inc................................. 10 North Central Irrigation................ 37 Oak Ridge Foam & Coating

The ultimate answer: There is only one original. There is only one Sunflower.

Call us today for low-rate financing or incredible lease options available on Sunflower tillage!

Systems, Inc................................ 32 Oasis Irrigation............................. 68 Riesterer & Schnell....................... 63 Roberts Irrigation ........................... 2 Ruder Ware.................................. 53 Rural Mutual Ins........................... 38 Sand County Equip....................... 60 Schroeder Brothers Farms.............. 7 Swiderski Equipment.................... 66 Syngenta......................................... 3 T.I.P............................................... 29 United FCS.................................... 15 United Potato Growers of Wisconsin............................... 67 V&H Truck, Inc.............................. 12




Vine Vest North............................ 34




Volm Companies........................... 33





WPVGA Subscribers...................... 36

©2016 AGCO Corporation. Sunflower is a worldwide brand of AGCO Corporation. AGCO and Sunflower are trademarks of AGCO. All rights reserved. *On select models with approved credit from AGCO Finance, LLC. Down payment required. Restrictions may apply. Contact your participating dealer for more details. Offer expires December 31, 2016 and may be subject to change without notice.

WPVGA Support Our Members.... 27


66 BC�T March

Wick Buildings LLC........................ 18

WSPIA........................................... 42

50% cut in dues to new/returning members for 2017 Crop Year!


• The lawsuit is settled! Come on back & let’s make a stack of $$$! Our organization works for you, providing the information you need to make the best decisions and return profitability to your farm. • Enjoy membership access to complete data packages including critical supply and demand usage. • Wisconsin does a wonderful job of marketing and keeping grower returns at a premium. • We offer communications for marketers, which are a crucial tool and a by-product of United of Wisconsin. • The Grower Return Index (GRI) you receive will pay for your dues tenfold. • We hold weekly marketing calls! • Grower-only communication calls provide you with inputs, ideas and opinions. Everyone stays in tune.

Balancing supply with demand generates positive returns. Plan your 2017 plantings wisely!

United Of Wisconsin Thanks Our Grower Members For Their Continued Membership & Support: • Alsum Farms • Coloma Farms • Fenske Farms • Gagas Farms • Hyland Lakes Spuds

• Isherwood Co. • J-J Potatoes • J.W. Mattek & Sons • Okray Family Farms

• Plover River Farms Alliance • Schroeder Bros. • Ted Baginski & Sons • Wagner Farms

• Worzella & Sons • Woyak Farms • Wysocki Produce Farm • Yeska Brothers

UNITED OF WISCONSIN THANKS THE FOLLOWING LOCAL PARTNERS: Omernik & Associates, Inc., Mid State Truck Service, Warner & Warner, Big Iron Equipment, Sand County Equipment, Riesterer & Schnell, AMVAC, V&H Inc.

For details on membership & Grower/Marketing calls, Contact Dana Rady, Cooperative Director drady0409@gmail.com or 715-623-7683

P.O. Box 327 Antigo, WI 54409

Non-Profit Org U.S. Postage Paid Stevens Point, WI 54481 Permit No. 480





SOLUTIONS THAT ADD VALUE, REDUCE RISK & INCREASE PROFITS. Lindsay’s rugged equipment, integrated technologies, and plug-and-play add-ons will make the most of your operation – from a single, reliable source. Pumps, pivots, filtration and remote control all work together to maximize your yields. Visit your local Zimmatic ® by Lindsay dealer to customize the right system for your needs. www.lindsayadvantage.com

Oasis Irrigation LLC 715-335-8300

N6775 5th Avenue • Plainfield, WI 54966

Separators and Filtration Solutions

© 2014 Lindsay. All rights reserved. Zimmatic, FieldNET, Growsmart, Watertronics and LAKOS are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Lindsay Corporation and its subsidiaries.

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.