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$18/year | $1.50/copy | Volume 69 No. 11 | NOVEMBER 2017



POTATO INDUSTRY Sends Hurricane Relief 2017 WISCONSIN CERTIFIED Seed Potato Growers Directory WHEN THE DEPARTMENT Of Labor Comes Knocking POTATO SEED PHYSIOLOGY Predict, Guide & Manage to Target CHOOSE THE CORRECT Business Entity for You


RON KRUEGER Eagle River Seed Farm, LLC

Potato cultivar variety FL 2137 blooms early in the morning of July 2017 on Eagle River Seed Farm.

ACT NOW TO IRRIGATE NEXT YEAR There has never been a better time to discuss the advantages and benefits of a Reinke system with your local Reinke dealer. And, if you act now, you will lock in some of the best pricing of the year. So call today to put the advantages of Reinke mechanized irrigation to work for you and your operation next year. 1500 Post Road | Plover WI 54467 | (715) 344-4747 2022 W. 2nd Avenue | Bloomer, WI 54724 | (715) 568-4600

Chris Fleming Chris Lockery Paul Katz

Inventory • Replenishment Services • Handle all freight concerns • Long-Range Planning •

Transportation: Ted Kowalski

Mitch Bushman Maria Yenter • Bob Dobbe John Hopfensperger • John Eckendorf Jerome Bushman (FL - WI) Mike Gatz, Jim Stefan and Chris Fleming (Milwaukee) Sam Saccullo (All fruits and vegetables) Mike Whyte (Michigan) Mike Carter CEO

800-826-0200 715-677-4533 • Fax: 715-677-4076 R o s h o l t ,

W i s c o n s i n

On the Cover: Apparently nine holes of golf does wonders

for Ron Krueger, general manager of Eagle River Seed Farm, LLC, because he took the gorgeous cover photo after an early morning round of chasing the little white ball. Captured in color is a field of FL 2137 potato cultivar plants in full bloom on an early morning in July 2017. The crop is planted on Farm 3 of Eagle River Seed Farm in Eagle River, Wisconsin.

8 BADGER COMMON’TATER INTERVIEW: After potato harvest each year, in October, Eagle River Seed Farm General Manager Ron Krueger (center) meets with about a dozen guys from all over the country, each of whom works in the agriculture industry, in South Dakota for the pheasant hunting season opener. Ron is shown with Dennis Kelly (left), government relations and regulatory affairs for Syngenta Crop Protection, and Tim Johnson (right), president and CEO of the California Rice Commission.

DEPARTMENTS: ALI’S KITCHEN................... 73 AUXILIARY NEWS.............. 49 BADGER BEAT................... 62


38,000 pounds of potatoes and onions sent to Florida


Spudmobile and Spudly visit Irish Fest & Indiana and Wisconsin State Fairs


24 SEED PHYSIOLOGY: Produce young potato seed in well-irrigated, fertile soil 40 WHAT TO DO WHEN the Department of Labor comes knocking at the door 52 COMPLETE DIRECTORY of 2017 Wisconsin Certified Seed Potato growers

68 CHOOSE THE RIGHT business entity structure for your farm or agribusiness BC�T November

NEW PRODUCTS............... 64

Jay-Mar Field Day is a chance for company to showcase its Now News........................ 58 corn and soybean varieties




NPC NEWS........................ 46

PEOPLE ............................ 36 PLANTING IDEAS................ 6 POTATOES USA NEWS...... 72 WPIB FOCUS..................... 50

WPVGA Board of Directors: President: Eric Schroeder Vice President: Josh Mattek Secretary: Gary Wysocki Treasurer: Wes Meddaugh Directors: Steve Diercks, Mark Finnessy, 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, Andy Diercks, Cliff Gagas, John T. Schroeder & Tom Wild WPVGA Associate Division Board of Directors: President: Sally Suprise Vice President: Casey Kedrowski Secretary: Cathy Schommer

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

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

Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary Board of Directors: President: Kathy Bartsch Vice President: Devin Zarda Secretary/Treasurer: Deniell Bula Directors: Jody Baginski, Brittany Bula, Paula Houlihan & Marie Reid

WPVGA Office (715) 623-7683 • FAX: (715) 623-3176 E-mail: Website: Like Us On Facebook:

Treasurer: Nick Laudenbach Directors: Paul Cieslewicz, Kenton Mehlberg, Zach Mykisen & Joel Zalewski

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

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: ADVERTISING: To advertise your service or product in this magazine, call (715) 630-6213, or email: Joe Kertzman: The editor welcomes manuscripts and pictures but accepts no responsibility for such material while in our hands. BC�T November



Calendar NOVEMBER 14 REMOTE SENSING CONFERENCE Union South, UW-Madison Register: remote-sensing Madison, WI

DECEMBER 11-13 FARM JOURNAL AGTECH EXPO JW Marriott Indianapolis IN 11-14 NEW YORK PRODUCE SHOW Jacob K. Javits Convention Center New York City, NY

JANUARY 2018 10 POTATO BUSINESS SUMMIT Rosen Shingle Creek Resort Orlando, FL 10-12 POTATO EXPO Rosen Shingle Creek Resort Orlando, FL




Holiday Inn

Stevens Point, WI



Alerus Center

Grand Forks, ND

26-Mar. 1


Capital Hilton

Washington, D.C.

MAY 27-31


Cusco, Peru

Planting Ideas It was a whirlwind of activity, but it was no hurricane, and we were all grateful for that. After the sad and devastating losses southern states and Puerto Rico experienced during the seemingly never-ending hurricane season this year, the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association, area growers and supporting agricultural companies sprang into action to help victims of the natural disasters. They responded with more than 30,000 pounds of potatoes, 8,000 pounds of onions and monetary donations shipped to the Harry Chapin Food Bank in Fort Myers, Florida. When Hurricane Irma ravaged the Florida Coast, it left thousands of people without everyday essentials. The hurricane did considerable damage to Florida crops and, as noted in The Packer newspaper, left the Sunshine State citrus groves with dropped fruit, standing water and dashed hopes. Irma hit southwest Florida’s Immokalee/Naples region hard, doing considerable damage to the tomato crop. WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan helped coordinate a game plan with area growers and ag companies, and Spudmobile Assistant Doug Foemmel was charged with contacting growers and Associate Division members for potato, vegetable and monetary donations. I was told to grab a camera and hit the road. Well, I drove my car and followed a semi-trailer and driver donated by Bula-Gieringer Farms, along with the cost of freight shipping, from loading dock to loading dock to capture the action. It was an important but fulfilling couple of days driving to area potato and vegetable farms to meet the growers who donated produce for the hurricane relief effort. My travels took me from Palmyra to Friesland, Grand Marsh to Plainfield, and Bancroft to Plover. The trip was a chance to reflect on the generosity of not only growers, but the entire Wisconsin agricultural community, including companies that support the industry. The WPVGA would like to thank each and every one of those who played a role in contributing to the shipment of potatoes, vegetables and muchneeded monetary donations to those Floridians in desperate straits. Take a moment to read the complete, related feature article in this issue and look at those nice images I captured during my inspirational road trip. 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:

Joe Kertzman

Managing Editor

Above: Dean Kincaid Inc. donated 8,000 pounds of onions to the Harry Chapin Food Bank in Fort Myers, Florida.


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Foundation & Certified Seed Potatoes

Interview RON KRUEGER,

general manager, Eagle River Seed Farm LLC

By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater

NAME: Ron Krueger TITLE: General manager COMPANY: Eagle River Seed Farm LLC LOCATION: Eagle River, WI HOMETOWN: Tomahawk, WI YEARS IN PRESENT POSITION: 25 years PREVIOUS EMPLOYMENT: 15 years, Frito-Lay genetics research SCHOOLING: Graduate of Tomahawk High School, attended University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point ACTIVITIES/ORGANIZATIONS: Active in the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA), co-chair of WPVGA Research Committee, and WPVGA Government Affairs and SpudPro Committees AWARDS/HONORS: 2006 and 2014 WPVGA Volunteer of the Year, 2013 Wisconsin Seed Potato Industry Leadership Award, 2007 Frito-Lay Seed Supplier of the Year and National Potato Council Environmental Stewardship Award FAMILY: Wife, Mary, married for 43 years, daughters, Kara and Katee, and five grandchildren HOBBIES: Golf, hunting, boating and woodworking 8

BC�T November

When Ron Krueger went off to college, he swore he’d never

go back to farming. The farm manager for Eagle River Seed Farm LLC for the past 25 years, Krueger says his parents owned a dairy farm in Irma, Wisconsin that had been in the family since the early part of the 1900’s. “My grandfather grew potatoes, strawberries, miscellaneous vegetables and had a few dairy cows. My parents built on the dairy portion of the farm until they were milking around 32 head—not a very large operation by today’s standards, but sustainable for that time,” he relates.

“I was the youngest of four, and swore when I left for school I would never return to farming,” Krueger says. “I am extremely glad that I was able to return to agriculture as a career.” Formerly known as Felix Zeloski Farms, and nestled in the middle of the world’s largest inland chain of lakes, Eagle River Seed Farm LLC supports a tremendous amount of wildlife as well as natural scenic beauty. Dennis Zeloski took over the family business from his father, Felix M. Zeloski, in 1973. Krueger now oversees the growing of 1,100 acres of certified seed potatoes (including numerous varieties), certified seed oats, clover, radish and canola. As farm manager of Eagle River Seed

Farm, you’ve seen some changes. Did you work for Dennis Zeloski in the beginning, and what was it like learning the potato business at that time? Yes, Dennis Zeloski interviewed and hired me, and over the years we have become great friends. I’ve learned so much over the years from people like Dennis and the University of Wisconsin (UW) research team, and other growers who have been more than willing to share their experiences. Above: This issue’s interviewee, Ron Krueger (center, in dark blue), general manager of Eagle River Seed Farm, poses with his crew and shakes hands with Dennis Zeloski during a farewell party for Dennis. The photo was taken just after Dennis had thanked all the employees for their hard work and loyalty. Formerly known as Felix Zeloski Farms, Eagle River Seed Farm had been in the Zeloski family for generations before it was sold to CSS Farms and RPE in 2013, a decision long in the making.

Dennis was the person who encouraged me to join the Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association (WSPIA) Board of Directors. That was my introduction to the inner workings of the Wisconsin potato industry. It was a big deal back then, because up until that time, only farm owners or family had been considered for positions on these boards.

tried to become proficient enough at it that it didn’t take so much of my time. Things changed in 2013 when the decision was made to sell Eagle River Seed Farm to CSS Farms and RPE. How have things remained the same and how have they changed on the farm? The sale of the farm was not a snap decision. Dennis had a retirement date in his mind a few years prior to the actual sale, and we made it happen.

Top Left: An early-generation seed potato field, oats grow between the rows to reduce transmission of diseases by aphids. Eagle River Seed Farm plants all the bare ground around fields and between seed lots with various crops to maintain a green buffer zone. Above: While Eagle River Seed Farm bulk stores all large lots of potatoes, smaller lots—under 100 cwt. (hundredweight)—are stored in plastic macro bins. It’s done this way to optimize space and maintain constant air supply.

ownership seamless, and their concern for the employees and their needs was a wonderful thing.

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BC�T November


Interview. . .

continued from pg. 9

so often people need a little change to peak their interest again. As far as changes go, we have become even more focused on early generation foundation seed production, with all our varieties being supplied as mini tubers from only a select few greenhouse facilities. After all, it’s all about the seed. Can you run me through a typical day of what you might tackle/do daily? Any grower will tell you there is no such thing as a typical day on a farm. Although there are a few things that happen with certain regularity.

We start our day at 7 a.m. with a brief meeting of all my people. We meet casually over coffee and discuss what is happening that day, individual assignments and anything else that is expected to go on then or later in the week.

Left: Dark red Norland potatoes are recently harvested on the home farm. All Eagle River Seed Farm fields are within two miles of the warehouse complex.

We take this opportunity to review the previous day’s accomplishments. It is also a great opportunity to stress safety and the need to help each other. Then, of course, for me it is on to answer emails and texts and any general office work I have.

planter spacing and calibration or seed cutter performance, irrigation, harvester operation or any of a hundred things, depending on the time of the year.

Then it’s off to the field to do the fun stuff that could include checking

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Right & Below: Two separate fields of FritoLay varieties make for pretty pictures and demonstrate the uniformity of growth that Eagle River Seed Farm strives for.

I also run the sprayer as it affords me the opportunity to see the whole farm at least once a week. continued on pg. 12

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Interview. . .

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Has the farm grown in acreage? We haven’t changed in size since 1992 when we purchased an additional 700 acres to get us to a solid threeyear rotation. What has happened over the years has been our conscious shift from commercial seed

production to base seed production. That one thing has enabled us, as a smaller farm, to compete in the marketplace. It has also added layers of complexity to our operation so that we can ensure the best possible product for our customers.

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What varieties of seed potatoes does Eagle River Seed Farm grow? Other vegetables or crops on rotation, and how many acres of each? We now grow 63 separate lots of 38 varieties of potatoes. The acreage varies from less than a tenth of an acre up to a 50-acre lot size. In total, we grow approximately 300 acres of potatoes a year. We grow reds, whites, russets, chip potatoes, fingerlings, yellow flesh and other specialty varieties. A list of all the varieties is in the Wisconsin crop directory or on the WSPIA website. We rotate with oats and clover. It works in our short-season northern area. We grow 300-plus acres of oats, and on the third year we rotate in 300-plus acres of clover that is plowed back for soil health. We also grow a few acres of tillage radish and canola, mostly around outside edges of potato fields to keep the deer occupied with something other than potatoes. Above: Though Ron Krueger says the town of Eagle River is quiet in the winter (right), and he couldn’t imagine living anywhere but there on the farm, he and his wife, Mary, do escape the long winter to go to the dunes of Cape San Blas in Florida (left) in February, where it’s equally peaceful and laid back. No, that’s not snow in the image at left, but white sand.

Are there more varieties now after the sale? Is this important and why? Yes, we have more varieties now, mainly because we are working with some new customers, and, of course, the interest each has in certain varieties varies widely. Some of this is also driven by consumer interest in colorful potatoes and healthier eating habits. The importance to us is that we meet the needs of our customers with clean seed of their choosing in a timely manner. Is there a larger customer base available to you now, after the sale? Our customer base has grown steadily and continues to do so. The sale of the farm has put more focus on what we are doing, and the relationship with CSS Farms and RPE has helped broaden our reach in the industry. continued on pg. 14

Above: Seed potato vines are killed in preparation for harvest. Skin set, which is needed to prevent bruising at harvesttime, can take anywhere from 14 to 28 days, depending on variety and season.


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BC�T November 13

Interview. . .

continued from pg. 13

Has the process of growing certified seed potatoes changed over the years? Explain. Research has given us an understanding of the interactions of insects and disease, fertility and soil health, and so many other aspects of producing a crop. Technology has given us the tools to assemble data, monitor crops and increase efficiency. I don’t know how we were able to get it all done before. Has Eagle River Seed Farm gotten more efficient, and if so, in what ways? Yes, we have become more efficient. I’ve been here a long time, and if you don’t become more efficient, you will be gone. With that said, you can’t just go out and buy efficiency; it has to be planned with a focus on pinpointing failures and doing better without breaking the bank.

Our equipment has been continually upgraded over the years, and our soil management has improved tremendously. Just the efficiency found in variable-rate applications of fertilizer pays for itself the first year you do it. It’s also a great bonus to see your fields produce more evenly in comparison to each other. We can go out the door right now and just point at something, anything, and I will tell you what we have done to improve it. It’s a never-

Above: A year-one mini-tuber planting is shown in the spring of this year. Eagle River Seed Farm plants around 70 acres a year of mini- and microtubers.

ending circle, but great fun. How does technology play a role in the certified seed potato business? One of the greatest advances for potato certification is the development of disease testing procedures that gave us, as growers, the tools to manage our crop to reduce disease incidence.

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If you are a seed grower and you know you have virus or some other disease in a lot of seed, you can make a management decision. Without that knowledge, you are just guessing and will most likely be wrong more than right. Is it a good business to be in, and why or why not? It’s a great business for the right person. It affords opportunity for a lifetime of learning. The people in the industry are some of the nicest, most hardworking people I have ever met.

decides the winners and losers. We have a good breeding program with outstanding leadership that has more focus than ever before, and I expect to see great things in the future. What are the biggest challenges you face in growing certified seed? My biggest challenge now is finding qualified help that is willing to work and open to learning new skills. Everyone I talk to complains about the same thing: “I just can’t find

I personally am grateful every day for the opportunities I have had and the people I have met along the way who’ve contributed to our success. How is the harvest this year? Yield? Quality? Harvest is moving along nicely now. We are about 50 percent done. As with any other year, it has its challenges, but we can overcome those.

enough help.” I have been blessed in the past with great people working on our farm, and we have been able to retain a good percentage of them. We need to see the next generation of young people interested in agriculture. You are on the WPVGA Board of Directors, chairman of the research committee and in the continued on pg. 16

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Health-wise, the crop looks very good and the yields are surprisingly good considering the way our year started. Northern Wisconsin has had one of the wettest years on record, and still I’m optimistic we will have an average crop. Of course, you know the old joke that a farmer’s record crop of last year is now his new average. Just goes to show we set our sights high. Who are your customers for certified Wisconsin seed potatoes? Our major customers are Frito-Lay and their grower group, RPE and their farms, and the rest are spread out all over North America. Our customer list is long and they keep returning, so we must be doing something good. Do you work with the University of Wisconsin on variety development? I’ve worked on the SpudPro committee since its inception, the object being to bring new Wisconsin varieties to the forefront so they can be trialed by growers in their field conditions.

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BC�T November 15 10/10/17 3:56 PM

Interview. . .

continued from pg. 15

SpudPro committee, plus you were president of the WSPIA. Why is it important for you to be involved in the WPVGA and committees? I cannot state strongly enough how important I feel about staying involved with our industry through the WPVGA, the WSPIA and any of the many committees. Not only do you have the education that it affords, but also the network that it builds for your career and business is amazing. I would encourage anyone who has not participated in the past to get started, and if you were involved and haven’t been for a while, come on back and see what you’ve been missing. The Research Committee meetings, for example, are some of the most informative meetings I have ever attended. Without this interaction and stimulus for thought, I think it may be difficult to maintain the high level of enthusiasm that’s needed for my job. When I was involved in the chip committee, John Hein of Sowinski Farms and I did a 30-second

commercial about agricultural water use. Hein played the role of a community member who sees me—his neighbor and a farmer—getting ready to irrigate after a rainfall. In the commercial, I proceed to educate Hein about my irrigation practices, and that they don’t take away from the water that trees need. I explain that Wisconsin has huge, healthy forests and that there are studies to prove that trees use more water than vegetables. I continue, explaining that farmers only use precise amounts of water when and where needed, which helps families put healthy potatoes and vegetables on their plates each day. The commercial aired on local television stations (channels 7 and 9 in Wausau, and channel 12 in Rhinelander), and it was and is an important message to get out to the public. What do you hope to see happen or change on the farm in the upcoming

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16 BC�T November



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years before you retire? Change is of course necessary to sustain the farm, but I don’t want to lose the Northwoods, laid-back vibe. I think of my coworkers as family and I like it that way. I just hope that whoever takes over when I’m gone appreciates being able to work and live every day where other families go for vacation. By the way, I’m not giving up yet—I still have a few good years left in me. Do you have anything to add about seed potato farming, your experiences or what you foresee in the future? Seed potato farming has been good to me and my family. Am I famous? Probably not. Am I rich? It depends on how you quantify rich. Am I happy? Yes, I am. So as the saying goes, if you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life. Oh, and in case the owners of Eagle River Seed Farm are reading this, I actually do work sometimes.

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Wisconsin Ag Industry Supports Hurricane Victims More than 30,000 pounds of potatoes and 8,000 pounds of onions shipped to Florida By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater Mother Nature has hit the southern United States with severe hurricanes this year, the worst of which was Hurricane Irma that struck the Florida Coast, leaving thousands without everyday essentials. Wisconsin’s potato and vegetable industry is answering the call for help.

The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) issued a press release on October 16, announcing that a large truckload of potatoes and onions was on its way from Wisconsin to the Harry Chapin Food Bank in Fort Myers, Florida. “Wisconsin farmers have a history

of being generous, especially to those in need or suffering through an emergency hardship,” says WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan. “Through a coordinated effort by WPVGA members, we are proud to be a part of delivering ‘Something Special from Wisconsin’ to our friends in the southern U.S.” Hurricane Irma did considerable damage to crops in Florida. A recent article in The Packer newspaper stated: “Hurricane Irma left Sunshine State citrus groves with dropped fruit, standing water and dashed hopes.” The article went on to say that “no part of the Florida produce industry was untouched by the Sept. 10-12 storm.” Irma also hit southwest Florida’s Immokalee/Naples region Above: Dean Kincaid, Inc. of Palmyra donated 8,000 pounds of onions as part of a semi-load of produce headed to the Harry Chapin Food bank in Fort Myers, Florida. Chase Kincaid was all smiles as he posed next to skids of onions going toward the hurricane relief effort.

18 BC�T November

hard, doing considerable damage to the tomato crop. The storms also affected people who work in the fields. Irma not only caused widespread and lengthy power outages, but also destroyed housing in and around Immokalee, a community largely made up of agricultural field workers.

GENEROUS DONORS The following Wisconsin potato farms made generous donations of potatoes: Wysocki Produce Farm/ RPE of Bancroft, Bushmans’ Inc. of Rosholt, Okray Family Farms of Plover, Alsum Farms of Friesland and Worzella & Sons of Plover. All told, over 30,000 pounds of potatoes

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Left: Rod Beggs of Midwestern Potatoes made sure a generous donation from Bushmans’ Inc. got onto the semi-trailer for shipment to Florida as part of the hurricane relief effort. Right: Wendy Dykstra of Alsum Farms hands a bag of potatoes to truck driver Kenny Baldwin, who hauled 38,000 pounds of Wisconsin potatoes and onions to Harry Chapin Food bank in Fort Myers, Florida. Bula-Gieringer Farms contributed the freight hauling to the relief effort. continued on pg. 20

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Piler & Conveyor Line BC�T November 19

Hurricane Relief. . . continued from pg. 19

were donated. In addition to the large quantity of potatoes, Dean Kincaid, Inc. of Palmyra donated 8,000 pounds of onions. Bula-Gieringer Farms of Friendship contributed the generous donation of the freight, picking up product and delivering the load to Florida. A number of organizations also made monetary donations, including Roberts Irrigation of Plover, J.W.


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Mattek & Sons of Antigo, Bula Potato Farms of Antigo, Brenda and Dennis Bula of Antigo, Coloma Farms of Coloma and Heartland Farms of Hancock. “We are saddened by the devastating impacts of the hurricane, and we feel the pain suffered by the agricultural community in the Immokalee/Naples region,” says Houlihan. “We are hopeful that this gesture from the Wisconsin potato and vegetable industry lets those folks know that we care about them, and at least shines a ray of hope on their future,” he adds. Among the other donations made regularly by the WPVGA are the following: annual donation of time, money and effort in packing over 100,000 meals to the charitable organization Feed My Starving continued on pg. 22

Left: Russet baking potatoes are the flavor of the day, as donated by Wysocki Produce Farm/RPE, Inc. for shipment to Florida. Bill Wysocki took time to pose next to a skid of potatoes, as well as with truck driver Kenny Baldwin, who worked for BulaGieringer Farms to deliver the produce. Right: The Worzella & Sons crew readies potatoes for shipment to Florida as part of a hurricane relief effort coordinated between the WPVGA, local growers and associate members.

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Hurricane Relief. . . continued from pg. 20

Children; multiple salad bar donations to Wisconsin schools; thousands of pounds of potatoes annually to Feeding America food banks; annual donations to the Wellers Walk that goes toward drilling wells in Africa; and annual donations of potato chips to Boys

and Girls Clubs and other organizations throughout Wisconsin, including shipments of potato chips to U.S. troops in Iraq.

Above: A forklift driver at Okray Family Farms loads bins of potatoes onto a semi-trailer headed to the Harry Chapin Food Bank in Fort Myers, Florida. more than 400 members and affiliates. For more

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Consider the Physiology of the Seed Physiologically young potato seed is produced in fertile soil where water is readily available By Mike Copas, chairman of the SpudPro Committee and RPE senior agronomist High-quality potato seed is the most critical purchase a commercial grower can make while planning for the upcoming season. The success or ultimate profitability of that purchased seed is primarily determined by two major factors: pathology and physiology. Wisconsin and other states have regulating bodies that are responsible for the assessment, classification and certification of seed lots based on

standards agreed upon by the potato industry. The role of seed certification from the commercial grower perspective is to assure that they are receiving seed within the tolerances established for diseases and varietal integrity. Management of agronomy, control of pests and pathogens, and management of seed age falls to the responsibility of individual seed growers.

IMPACT OF SEED PHYSIOLOGY The physiological status of the seed lot has, in the past, not been heavily considered by commercial growers when making purchases. The impact seed physiology has on the commercial crop is significant and should not be overlooked. Small shifts in characteristics like stem numbers or emergence date can vastly change the expectations, in-season management and economic return on a crop. To understand how to manage and control physiological age, we first need to consider the factors that impact the physiological age of a tuber.

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Above: Maximizing the potential of a seed lot means initiating tubers under ideal weather conditions. In-season management of physiological seed age revolves principally around a water and fertility program that mitigates stress on the developing crop. Photo courtesy of RPE, Inc. marketing

These factors can be considered independent of each other, but they are often linked through external factors like weather, water and fertility management, disease control and the logistics of managing a farm business. At right, are the general characteristics that we would expect to observe as different between a physiologically old seed lot and a physiologically young seed crop.

Old/Aged Seed Earlier dormancy Earlier emergence Smaller canopy Reduced tuber bulking rate Early senescence Early harvest potential Reduced total yield potential

Young/Juvenile Seed Later dormancy Later emergence Greater vine vigor Higher tuber bulking rate Later senescence Later harvest potential Higher total yield potential

Understanding how each external factor impacts the physiological age of seed allows growers to begin to better predict, guide and manage to a target. While there are certain factors that go well beyond a grower’s ability continued on pg. 26 Left: The effects of physiological age can be most evident during emergence. Larger, more mature seed tubers will emerge early while smaller, younger seed emerges later. This can vary by several days to weeks between plants. Photo courtesy of RPE, Inc. marketing Right: Physiological age can create large differences in emergence and tuber initiation date. These two single-stem red Norland plants came from the same seed lot. The plant on the top was from seed that was aged, while the plant on the bottom was managed for more juvenile seed. Photo courtesy of RPE, Inc. marketing BC�T November 25

Consider the Physiology of the Seed . . . continued from pg. 25

to control, many times it is the management and planning to prepare for these events that sets a grower up for success.

The growing season tends to present risks and problems in an additive effect rather than each event being exclusive from another. An easy example to frame this causeand-effect additive relationship to the crop is to view a seed lot that finished the season both slightly oversize and failed to reach certification.

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Often, the reasons for this are attributed to the most recent weather events: “A bad storm or extended rainy period led me not to get into the field to spray when I needed.” PLAN AND MANAGE CROP Realistically, the chain of events started at planting, and some level of additional planning and management, might have reduced or even eliminated the issues.

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When looking at the physiology and physiological age of the tuber, this scenario is even more critical, since once age is added to the seed, it cannot be amended or minimized in its influence on the daughter crop. The major factors that influence physiological age include the temperature and weather conditions

Above: Timing vine desiccation and duration from kill to harvest can be a logistical nightmare. An established target of physiological age, along with a well-executed timeline and harvest plan, allows growers to successfully manage seed age once the crop moves into storage. Photo courtesy of RPE, Inc. marketing

of the growing season, time of planting, time of vine kill, fertility and water, and storage conditions. Each of these factors can cause increases in seed age, but can also fortunately be managed to some extent by the grower. A greater understanding of these factors should allow growers to project relative seed age within their crop, and allow them to start to modify their management to guide the crop toward a target age. 1. Time of planting. This is the most critical point at which growers set the stage for the oncoming growing season. Early plantings followed by later harvests provide the highest opportunity for yield, but typically produce the most aged seed due to the accumulation of stress events from the growing season. Late plantings contribute to later dormancy of the seed and can

exhibit slow sprouting and delayed emergence in the subsequent crop. 2. Temperature and conditions of the growing season. Stress can occur at any time during the growing season to the developing plant. The weather conditions during the period of tuber initiation are highly influential on tuber set. Under ideal weather conditions, plants will initiate high numbers of tubers. Stresses of heat and water can limit the total number of tubers initiated, or can lead to abortion of previously initiated tubers. Following tuber initiation, heat and water stress during the growing season act cumulatively on tuber physiological age. Tubers are much more susceptible to heat stress following vine desiccation due to the loss of protective canopy that shades the ground during the season. Hill temperatures can be drastically warmer than the air temperature

in days with full sun and limited air movement. Though this time period seems minimal relative to the rest of the growing season, tubers awaiting harvest can substantially increase in physiological age when experiencing stress events. 3. Fertility and water management. This is perhaps the area where growers have the most control. Physiologically young seed is produced under optimal growing conditions and when the resources of soil fertility and water are readily available to the plant. Water in the form of drought stress or excess water due to rainfall and over-irrigation can also increase seed age. These stressors also impact total yield by limiting photosynthesis and causing fluctuations in tuber bulking. 4. Timing of vine desiccation. This is another area where growers can manage physiological seed age. Early continued on pg. 28

Above: Storage remains the most controlled place in the production system to manage physiological age. Ideally, the most juvenile seed possible is brought in from the field and the storage management plan guides the seed toward the desired physiological age. Photo courtesy of RPE, Inc. marketing

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Consider the Physiology of the Seed . . . continued from pg. 27

desiccation will limit aging of the crop and provide the greatest dormancy provided tubers are harvested within a short window following desiccation and storages have the capacity to cool the pile. Growers may also use an early vine kill followed by a prolonged time period before harvest to age the crop in the field. This could produce a physiologically older crop with shorter dormancy that would allow for early winter shipping of seed to southern growing locations. Full season seed crops can be very successful if managed to promote younger seed while producing higher marketable yields. 5. Storage management. Finally, another area where growers can influence physiological age

is in storage. Because of the controlled-climate systems in place today, storage provides a unique environment where aging can be influenced without the risks of weather that tubers would experience in the field.

utilize this means of aging the crop.

Most successful aging of seed is done during the curing period in storage prior to tubers being ramped down to their long-term storage temperatures.

Management goals and plans to achieve a target physiological age can be fraught with pitfalls if other aspects of the crop become limiting.

There can be considerable risk in this endeavor when working with aged seed from the field, since the control of dormancy within aged tubers is not as great as, or sometimes more variable than, that of young seed. This is another area that is not as developed, and most success has been achieved through trial-anderror by various seed growers that

Physiological age is a dimension of seed that can be often discounted or misunderstood due to the complex management and logistics that a farm must take on to raise a healthy and profitable seed crop.

A weather delay in planting or missed fungicide application may alter the course of the crop and prevent targets of specific age from being reached. Growers should still consider their role in managing physiological age, since many of the practices revolve around sound agronomic steps that should be part of a successful seed model.

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By Dana Rady, WPVGA Director of Promotions & Consumer Education

Spudmobile Remains Hot Commodity 5 Years Running What remained a distant dream for many years became a reality in August of 2014—the Spudmobile—

and it has continued a journey onward and upward ever since. In its fifth year of operation, it couldn’t be more exciting to see all the wonderful lives the Spudmobile, or “Wisconsin’s Traveling Billboard,” touches daily through education and in communicating the “Buy Local, Buy Wisconsin” message. What a privilege it is to see requests continually pouring in for the Spudmobile to visit schools, fairs, festivals, and sporting, community and industry events.

Above: WPVGA Spudmobile Assistant Doug Foemmel shows off his biceps at the 2017 Wisconsin State Fair in West Allis. Now given his “Iron Tater” status, we are sure a friendly showdown with Spudly is in his future! 30 BC�T November

And this year, some of those events took us beyond our state’s borders. The Indiana State Fair, held in Indianapolis, was new on the lineup for the Spudmobile in 2017. The vehicle stayed on site for two days, August 5-6, before heading to the Wisconsin State Fair immediately afterwards.

Top: The Indiana State Fair Queen and her court enjoy touring the Spudmobile, August 5-6, taking a break from fair activities to rest on the potato beanbag chairs with “butter pillows” (otherwise known as couch potatoes.) Right: This group takes a moment to pose outside the Spudmobile at the Indiana State Fair, August 5-6. Pictured left to right are Rox Heiht, and Sam, Henry and Jen Zdroik.

The Indiana State Fair boasted attendance numbers of over 900,000 people across the 17-day event, a 24 percent increase compared to 2016. Indianapolis remains an important area for transportation and is also part of Wisconsin’s “Buy Local” market. Overall, the Spudmobile was well received, and the staff provided answers to many questions about the main potato-growing state east of the Mississippi River. After the Wisconsin State Fair in West Allis, August 8-9, the Spudmobile joined Milwaukee’s Irish Fest on August 18-19. All events proved to be valuable in terms of the number of consumers who obtained

Top Left: A crowd enjoys visiting exhibits inside the Spudmobile at the Wisconsin State Fair, August 5-6, as WPVGA Spudmobile Assistant Doug Foemmel (left) stands ready to answer questions. Top Right: Spudly sure hit the jackpot after running across this leprechaun duo at the 2017 Irish Fest in Milwaukee on August 18-19. Left: Spudly stops by the Wisconsin cranberry booth while making his rounds at the 2017 Wisconsin State Fair, taking time to pose with two booth workers.

a broader perspective of the Wisconsin potato industry and how their food is produced. continued on pg. 32

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Marketplace . .

continued from pg. 31

Potato Industry Provides Spuds, Fries and Scholarships For 31 years, students at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

Foundation & Certified Seed Potatoes

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have enjoyed the annual Spud Bowl held during one of the first home games each season. And for 31 years, they have celebrated Wisconsin agriculture along with the state’s potato and vegetable industry during the game and in the week leading up to it. It’s an event that has become a staple for students during their college tenures at Stevens Point, and one many of them enjoy coming back to in support of their alma mater. September 23 marked hotter-than-

Above: The 2017 Spud Bowl scholarship winners line up on the field at the UW-Stevens Point versus Adrian Spud Bowl game. From left to right are WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan; Nick and Dianne Somers of Plover River Farms; scholarship winners Angie Stroik, McKenzkie Durr, Bobby Uttecht, Christopher Karl and Jeffrey Behselich; distinguished UWSP alumni John and Penney Boyne; and UWSP Chancellor Bernie Patterson. Bottom: WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan (center) poses with overall 2017 Spud Run winner Katie Harrold (left) and Curt Clausen (right), a three-time Olympic race walker who was the first male to cross the finish line.

normal temperatures for the Pointers as they took on Adrian College out of Michigan, beating them 41-28. Although temperatures were in the high 80’s, those who came to the game couldn’t wait to enjoy the free

food offered in celebration of potato agriculture in the immediate area. The crowd enjoyed free baked potatoes from Okray Family Farms, French fries courtesy of McCain Foods and free Point Root Beer. Additionally, growers and WPVGA Associate Division members donated money directly to the scholarship fund, which awards scholarships to five deserving individuals who also worked at the

potato tent during the game. Over the last 30 years, more than 100 students have received over $100,000 in scholarships. Once again, the Spud Bowl game was preceded by a 5k Spud Run that began at 2 p.m. Race participants received a free shirt, baked potato and fries to help replenish their bodies, and a ticket to the game.

Left: Spud Run participants take off behind Goerke Park in Stevens Point prior to the 2017 Spud Bowl on September 23.

continued on pg. 34

RIght: Gary Wysocki of RPE in Bancroft (left) and Cliff Gagas of Gagas Farms in Stevens Point (right) work hard at keeping those hot potatoes hot at the 2017 Spud Bowl.

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Marketplace. . .

continued from pg. 33

Above: Spud Bowl volunteers Tony, Molly and Sophie Grapsas get photo-bombed by Spudly. Top Right: Nick Somers of Plover River Farms (left) and Don Gagas of Gagas Farms (right) can’t hand out the fries fast enough at the Spud Bowl, September 23. Right: Chips (or in this case fries) off the old block, WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan’s daughters Tatum (second from left) and Jennifer (right) and friends are true French fry lovers. Bottom: Nick Somers and UWSP Chancellor Bernie Patterson had fun with the Spud Gun, firing T-shirts into the crowd!

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Left: There was actually a football game played at the Spud Bowl, between the UW-Stevens Point Pointers (purple) and the Adrian College Bulldogs of Michigan (white), with the Pointers victorious by a score of 41-28. RIght: This little girl almost never missed while playing ring toss at the Spud Bowl.

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WPVGA Hall of Famer Francis Wysocki Passes Away

Francis X. Wysocki died peacefully Saturday, September 30, 2017 at home surrounded by his family. Francis was born on December 15, 1936 in the Town of Sharon, Portage County, Wisconsin, to Francis X. Wysocki and Clara (Grenier) Wysocki. He attended local grade school in Ellis and graduated in 1955 from P.J. Jacobs High School. He married the love of his life, Harriet Schulist, on July 18, 1959 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Polonia. In 1953, Francis and two of his brothers (Louis and Greg) partnered with their father, Francis Sr., and began farming potatoes. Over time, the family farm expanded operations to include grading, packaging and marketing.

In 1978, the Wysocki family partnered with Nick Somers (Plover River Farms) to create Paragon Potato Farms, which consolidated the two packaging facilities. Through each business transition, Francis continued to focus on the companies’ farming operations, serving as the farm manager until his retirement.


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Over 40 Years’ Seed Growing Experience — Three Generations 36 BC�T November

Because it was a family farm, Francis enjoyed the opportunity to mentor his children, nephews and neighboring kids, always emphasizing the meaning of hard work and the importance of doing every job correctly. After his retirement, he enjoyed helping out every year during planting and harvesting. Today, the company commonly referred to as WFC (Wysocki Family of Companies) supports more than 390 full-time employees and farms approximately 30,000 acres annually. A member of the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) Hall of Fame, Francis served 10 years (1985-1994) on the WPVGA Board of Directors, including three years as president (1992-1994). He was a director of the National

Potato Council (NPC) for many years and was also the regional representative of the NPC Research Subcommittee for several years. He served as a long-time chairman of the Research and Education Committee for the Wisconsin Potato Industry and was co-chairman of the Potato Research Excellence Fund Drive. Francis received numerous agricultural awards and honors, including Outstanding Service to the FFA and the Central Wisconsin Chamber of Commerce, Outstanding Contributions to the Wisconsin Potato Industry, the University of Wisconsin College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Potato Research Support Award, and, in 1997, the NPC Gold Potato Award for his leadership and dedicated service to the potato industry. CHURCH & COMMUNITY He was active locally in his church and community. Francis was a member of the Holy Name and the St. Isadore Society. He served as parish council president at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Polonia for a number of years, as well as Eucharistic minister.

He is also survived by three brothers and one sister, Louis Wysocki, Gregory Wysocki, Lawrence (Carol) Wysocki and Justine (Leonard) Brilowski. He was preceded in death by his parents, brother, John, and sisters, Jeannette (Orlikowski), Mary Louise Wysocki and Philomene Wysocki. A mass of Christian burial was held at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Polonia on Wednesday, October 4, with burial following at St. Martin’s Cemetery in Ellis. Please consider a memorial contribution to the Sacred Heart Church Beautification Project or to St. Martin’s Church Maintenance Fund (online donations can be made at the Community Foundation of Central Wisconsin at Francis’ family would like to thank the staff at St. Clare’s and St. Michael’s

Hospitals, as well as Ministry’s Home Care & Hospice teams for their excellent care of Francis during his three-month battle with acute myeloid leukemia. continued on pg. 38

Francis served the Town of Sharon as the treasurer for 25 years, a position previously held by his father for more than 25 years. He and his wife of 58 years, Harriet, have a wonderful family of five sons and one daughter. Francis loved music, especially polkas, “oldie goldies,” and country western. He was an avid sportsman and acquired many trophies throughout the years. He is survived by his wife, Harriet, and their six children, Dr. Allen (Joan) Wysocki, Gainesville, FL; Brian (Lori) Wysocki, Almond, WI; Dan (Bonnie) Wysocki, Plainfield, WI; William (Marla) Wysocki, Plover, WI; Tim (Amy) Wysocki, New Brighton, MN; Joy (Chris) Lee, Goshen, IN, as well as 15 grandchildren and one greatgrandchild. BC�T November 37

People. . .

continued from pg. 37

Five Students Receive Scholarships at Spud Bowl For 31 years, the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP), in conjunction with over 50 local businesses, has celebrated the Central Wisconsin potato and vegetable industry by raising awareness about the importance of agriculture locally and funding scholarships for students from the area. The following students are the 2017 Spud Bowl Scholarship recipients: Bobby Uttecht Uttecht is a college senior from Eland, Wisconsin, and is a natural resource management major. He works on a successful dairy farm owned by his grandparents. Following graduation, Uttecht plans to pursue a career as a conservation warden in hopes to

protect and preserve our natural resources for future generations. McKenzie Durr Durr is a freshman biology major

from Edgar. Her mother grew up on a farm in central Wisconsin and inspired McKenzie to raise and sell livestock and be involved in 4-H to show animals. She plans to attend law school following graduation from UWSP in hopes to become a bioethical lawyer. Christopher Karl Karl is a senior physical education major from Arpin. He grew up on, and still works on, his parents’ 700-cow dairy farm in Milladore. Following graduation from UWSP, he plans to become a physical education teacher in Wisconsin. Angie Stroik Stroik is a first-generation college freshman from Mosinee, and is a health promotion wellness major. Her family has owned Stroik’s Lake DuBay Berry Farm for the last 27 years, and she has worked on the farm for nine years. After graduating from UWSP, she plans to teach and guide others into a healthier lifestyle as well as good eating habits. Above: The future is bright considering this lineup of 2017 Spud Bowl Scholarship recipients who attend the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, including, from left to right, Christopher Karl, Bobby Uttecht, Angie Stroik, McKenzie Durr and Jeffrey Behselich.

38 BC�T November

Jeffrey Behselich From Pittsville, Behselich is a senior elementary education major with a minor in broad field natural science. He is a fifth-generation farmer whose family farm celebrated its 100th

anniversary. Following graduation,

Over the past 30 years, the Spud

he plans to become an elementary

Bowl has awarded over $100,000

science teacher to educate the next

in scholarships to more than 100

generation about where their food

students. Congratulations to all of the

comes from.

2017 Spud Bowl Scholarship winners.

Suttle Is Life Member of Potato Association of America Dr. Jeffrey Suttle was inducted as an Honorary Life Member of the Potato Association of America (PAA) at the Annual Meeting, July 23-27, in Fargo, North Dakota.   Suttle is the recently retired research leader of the U.S. Department of Agriculture-ARS (Agricultural Research Service) Sugarbeet and Potato Research Unit in Fargo.  Jeff also provided management and oversite of the USDA-ARS research lab in East Grand Forks, Minnesota, assuring continued assessment of new genotypes for potato processing quality and storability as a service to cooperating laboratories across the country. Suttle graduated from The University of Texas with a degree in botany and then proceeded on to Michigan State University where he obtained his Ph.D. in plant physiology in 1979. Jeff was hired by the USDA-ARS as a research plant physiologist in Fargo. He maintained a keen interest and sharp expertise in the physiology of plant hormone metabolism from the time he was in graduate school and throughout his research career with ARS.  Jeff has been involved in the PAA and related activities since he began his research program on potato tuber dormancy. He has helped to organize PAA symposia, presented many oral and poster research summaries of his research at PAA meetings over the years, and served as senior editor

for the American Journal of Potato Research. Suttle’s globally recognized research career and accomplishments continue to flourish, benefiting both the potato industry and consumers. Right: Ed Lulai (right), a chemist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture-ARS (Agricultural Research Service), presents Jeff Suttle (left) with a Potato Association of America “Honorary Life Membership Award.”

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What to do When the Department of Labor Comes Knocking The DOL has the authority to audit your records and investigate the workplace By Attorneys Stephen A. DiTullio and Jordan Rohlfing, Dewitt Ross & Stevens S.C.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) has become aware of heightened U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division inspections at packing sheds in the Upper Midwest. This may be localized.

Atty. Stephen A. DiTullio

At this point, the inspections have, at least in part, involved the application of overtime rules for agricultural operations and the impact that commingling product from other farms might have on exemptions to those rules. For more information, visit Contact the WPVGA with questions or if you have information regarding the scope of the inspections at, or call 715-623-7683.

Atty. Jordan Rohlfing

Knock, knock, knock! A Department of Labor (DOL) investigator or team of investigators shows up at your farm and informs you that they are there to audit your records and/or investigate the workplace.

It is important for agricultural employers to have a plan in place for how to deal with DOL investigators when they come knocking. This article will discuss the basics of how to approach a DOL audit/ investigation.

as the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Occupational Safety and Health Act, the Immigration and Nationality Act, and the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act and H-2A program, among many others.

The DOL has the authority to audit and investigate based on a wide variety of laws under its jurisdiction.

DOL audits/investigations can encompass several federal laws under the DOL’s jurisdiction, such

DOL investigators can arrange a scheduled visit or might arrive unannounced. There are several

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steps outlined below that agricultural employers can take to prepare for and deal with an unscheduled audit/ investigation. PRE-INVESTIGATION STEPS 1. Make Compliance a Priority. Agricultural employers that make legal compliance a priority well before the DOL comes knocking typically fare better during DOL audits. These employers regularly conduct self-audits to make sure that they are complying with federal laws and that employee records are maintained in an organized fashion. We recommend that employers conduct these periodic self-audits to help ensure that they are complying with federal law. Employers should make necessary changes based on the results of the self-audit(s).

2. Choose a Company Representative. It is important for employers to have a designated company representative to act as the go-to person during a DOL audit or investigation. This person will be the continued on pg. 42

Above: The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) has become aware of heightened U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division inspections at packing sheds in the Upper Midwest. This may be localized, and at this point, the inspections have, at least in part, involved the application of overtime rules for agricultural operations and the impact that commingling product from other farms might have on exemptions to those rules.

EAGLE RIVER SEED FARM LLC Formerly Felix Zeloski Farm

• • • • •

Isolated growing area Premium early generation Specializing in the expansion of new varieties Comprehensive scouting and spray program Quality storage practices

Years of experience growing the highest quality seed for valued customers.

Ron Krueger Farm Manager | 4334 Chain O’Lakes Road Eagle River, WI | 54521 715-479-8434 Cell 715-891-0832 |

BC�T November 41

Department of Labor. . . continued from pg. 41

liaison between the company and the investigator. The designated company representative should have a strong working knowledge of the DOL audit and/or investigation process, the company’s recordkeeping, payroll and other records. The company representative will

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be the main person communicating with the DOL investigator, so we recommend choosing someone with an even-temperament and diplomatic disposition. AUDIT/INVESTIGATION PROCESS 1. Make the Investigator Comfortable. When the DOL investigator arrives on-site, the

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your crops could


Please note that when the DOL investigator arrives on-site, you have the right to request his or her credentials. 2. Pre-Investigation Meeting. The designated company representative should request a pre-investigation meeting. During the pre-investigation meeting, the company representative should find out what the DOL would like to inspect and what the DOL’s objectives are for the visit.

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42 BC�T November

We typically recommend arranging for the DOL investigator to be set up in a conference room or office near the front office, if possible, and not in close proximity to most workers (whether it is a barn, factory floor or other location). You want to be in control of what the DOL investigator is seeing and with whom he or she is coming into contact.


visit us online:

designated company representative and management should be notified immediately. It is also generally recommended to alert the company’s legal counsel that an audit or investigation has begun.

800.622.4877 x 255

Take notes during the preinvestigation meeting and during the entire investigation process. Make sure that at least two company representatives are present so that one can take notes while the other listens carefully to the investigator. 3. Limit the Investigation if Possible. The company representative should attempt to limit the scope of the investigation consistent with the DOL’s statements during the preinvestigation meeting, if possible. If the DOL asks for certain records, only turn over the records that are requested. For example, if the DOL asks for I-9 forms, do not hand over entire employee files.

The DOL has the authority to ask for a tour of fields, housing, field sanitation facilities and vehicles, among other things. Instead, just provide the investigator the I-9’s. Answer questions that are asked, but do not volunteer information. Check with legal counsel if there is a question regarding what must be disclosed. 4. Provide Copies of Requested Information. The company has a legal duty to provide requested information within the DOL’s jurisdiction. Noncompliance during an investigation could lead to significant legal problems later in the process. If the DOL investigator wants to leave the premises with certain records, be sure to provide him or her with copies. Do not let the investigator leave with originals.

It is important to keep detailed records of every document that the DOL reviews and/or takes off-site. This information can be helpful during the post-investigation process. 5. Tours and Employee Interviews. The DOL has the authority to ask for a tour of fields, housing, field sanitation facilities and vehicles, among other things. The DOL also has the authority to interview employees and/or managerial personnel, and the right to interview employees without management personnel present during employee interviews. A representative of management has a right to be present if the DOL

requests to interview management personnel. Furthermore, if a photo or video is taken by the DOL investigator, you should immediately photograph or videotape the same precise area or objects. This can occur in the investigator’s presence. Above: A well-prepared company representative can make a meaningful difference if the DOL shows up unannounced. The DOL Wage and Hour Division is set up to enforce the laws that protect agricultural workers and is meant to ensure a level playing field for their employers. continued on pg. 44

Bushman’s Riverside Ranch Specializing in Silverton Russets

Contact: Jeff Suchon, Farm Manager 715-757-2160 office • 715-927-4015 cell Or call Jonathon or John E. Bushman: 715-454-6201 BC�T November 43

Department of Labor. . . continued from pg. 43

6. Closing Conference. A closing conference is required after the DOL investigator has finished reviewing the requested information and completing any other investigation of the premises and employee interviews. Make sure the DOL investigator knows to whom he or she should send any follow-up questions or violations/citations. Use this time to ask questions and correct any obvious mistakes of fact. However, be careful not to admit to any violations. It is extremely important to take very careful notes of everything discussed during the closing conference, so it is recommended (just as in the pre-investigation meeting) that two company representatives be

present—one to listen and one to take notes. POST-INVESTIGATION PROCESS 1. Address Violations/Citations. The company should work to address any violations/citations that are issued. There are many strategies and opportunities during which a company can attempt to negotiate the scope of the violations and/or the amount of any fines assessed. This could include appealing any issued violations/citations or remedying any issues that were identified during the investigation. If you need assistance dealing with a violation/citation, we recommend that you reach out to your legal counsel. 2. Remedy Problems and

Abatements. If violations were discovered during the investigation process, the company will be required to address the issues and/or abate the violations by a certain date so those same issues do not crop up again in the future. The DOL investigation process can be very stressful. We recommend taking it one step at a time. A well-prepared company representative can make a meaningful difference if the DOL shows up unannounced. Please keep in mind that the Department of Labor maintains a robust website with various tools for employers. If you have any questions regarding DOL investigations, do not hesitate to contact Steve DiTullio or Jordan Rohlfing of Dewitt Ross & Stevens S.C., or your attorney.

WINTERIZE BEFORE THE SNOW FLIES. Taking care of your pivot now will prevent costly repairs and downtime during peak growing season. From drive train maintenance and pipe flushing to sprinkler package replacement, we offer winterization programs for all brands of pivots. Schedule your Valley certified preventative maintenance check today. DEALER LOGO

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NPC News

NPC Awards Scholarship for Nematode Research Fourth-year doctoral student collaborates with potato growers The National Potato Council (NPC) announces that Adrienne Gorny, a fourth-year doctoral student in Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology at Cornell University, is the recipient of the 2017-2018 NPC Academic Scholarship. The $10,000 award is provided annually to a graduate student with a strong interest in research that can directly benefit the potato industry. Gorny’s work focuses on the quantitative epidemiology of northern root-knot and lesion nematodes in potatoes. Her work involves frequent collaboration with New York-based potato growers for on-farm trials, and her research is squarely focused on helping the potato industry make informed decisions about nematode control measures.

experiments to test those ideas,” says Gorny.

“Growers have the most insight into the problems they face. They provide me with research ideas and I do


Gorny wants to quantify yield loss due to nematodes by measuring pre-plant


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46 BC�T November

density of the nematode population. “What’s really cool is that I’m measuring the DNA of nematodes in the soil, extracting DNA from soil and measuring bar code regions. It is faster than the traditional method and potentially more accurate,” she explains. Ultimately, Gorny plans to create a pre-planting soil test so that growers whose soil is above threshold for the nematodes can take action early, and those below the threshold could save money by not taking unnecessary action. SCIENTIFIC IMPACT According to Dr. Sarah Pethybridge, the supervisor for Gorny’s graduate studies, “Her unique project achievements for the U.S. potato industry will leave her ideally positioned to impact scientific research and support the profitability and productivity of the industry far

engagement with the community and the campus. “I anticipate a long, groundbreaking career for Adrienne,” Pethybridge wrote in a recommendation. “This scholarship will ensure I have the necessary resources to complete each component of my multi-faceted Ph.D. project, focusing on predicting yield loss due to root-knot and lesion nematodes by measuring DNA from these pathogens in the soil prior to planting,” Gorny details.

Above: Adrienne Gorny, shown working with tubers in a lab, is a doctoral student studying northern root-knot and lesion nematodes in potatoes.

into the foreseeable future.” In addition to her research, Gorny goes over and above in her

“This generous award will also provide funding to continue presenting my findings at national and regional conferences, enhancing my training as a well-rounded scientist,” she says. “I am very thankful and humbled that the NPC believes this research and my future career will aid the U.S. potato industry.” Gorny is originally from Canton, Michigan, and has always loved being outside and gardening. She decided to study botany at Purdue University for

her undergraduate degree. She is the first in her family to do scientific research. At Cornell, she served as vice president of the Student Association of the Geneva Experiment Station last year. After completing her doctoral program, she hopes to find a position at a university with a research/ extension component, or to work for the USDA Agricultural Research Service. The National Potato Council is the advocate for the economic well-being of U.S. potato growers on federal legislative, regulatory, environmental and trade issues. NPC supports the U.S. potato industry by monitoring issues affecting the strength and viability of the potato industry, influencing regulators and legislators on issues crucial to the industry's long-term success, ensuring fair market access for potatoes and potato products, and bringing the unique issues and interests of diverse growing regions in the country together on a national level. continued on pg. 48

Wild Seed Farms Varieties: • Atlantic • Superior • Red LaSoda • Snowden


Tom or Dan Wild


NPC News . .

continued from pg. 47

“Big Six” Release Tax Reform Outline Pesticide stewardship and challenges farmers face are key topics On September 27, the “Big Six” group released its tax reform outline that will frame the Congressional debate on the issue this fall. The group consists of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, National Economic Council Chairman Gary Cohn, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady. “We’re encouraged by the action to kick this process off. NPC will be working closely with our colleagues throughout agriculture as more specific details are released,

continuing to push our priorities across the finish line of this massive effort,” says NPC CEO John Keeling. Included in the proposal is an elimination of the “death (estate) tax” that currently levies a 40 percent tax on estates worth more than $5.49 million. The agriculture industry has long been advocating for this repeal, as it has resulted in family farms spending substantial amounts of time and money restructuring their businesses to ensure they don’t hit that threshold amount. Immediately following the release, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Secretary Sonny Perdue stated, “Most family farms operate as small businesses, with the line between success and failure frequently being razor thin. President Trump is right to push for reform and reductions in the tax code, an overhaul that is long overdue.” The tax reform package is expected to be taken up by the House and Senate only after a budget resolution is passed. That resolution is believed to be necessary to provide offsetting funding for the tax reform legislation.

USDA NIFA Announces Funding for Potato Projects On August 24, the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced 12 grants totaling $35 million for science-based solutions and new technology for the specialty crop industry. Two potato-related projects received funding, one each at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Colorado State University. Researchers will study, respectively, technologies for blackleg and soft rot management in potato and 69 No. opy | Volume $18/year | $1.50/c



2017 10 | OCTOBER



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48 BC�T November

high-throughput sensing for potato production and breeding. Funding is made possible through the Specialty Crop Research Initiative, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill and championed by NPC. As part of a larger spending package being considered on the House floor, the fiscal year 2018 Agriculture Appropriations Bill was under consideration the week of Sept. 4-8, and was anticipated to be completed when Congress returned

Badger Common’Tater


the next week. The bill provides funding for vital functions of the Department of Agriculture. Embedded within the bill is a recommended $2 million for NIFA’s ongoing potato breeding program. This multi-state program has seen strong bipartisan support over the last few years and this figure is the highest level ever reported out of the House Appropriations Committee.

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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). for Ansay sales executive A commercial Suprise proudly & Associates, Sally Farms s like Gagas Farms. insures operation

Auxiliary News By Devin Zarda, vice president, WPGA

I’m going to be very honest here. Prior to meeting my

husband, I didn’t realize that you actually planted a potato to get a potato. Yup, I win the Potato Farmer’s Wife of the Year Award. I thought it would be a seed from a flower that was planted. In the past six years, I’ve had a crash course in farming, and now I can and do regularly use words like lenticels, windrower and Dickeya in my everyday vocabulary. When I learned about the Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary, it was through the baked potato booth at the Wisconsin State Fair. I really had no idea what the Auxiliary did besides serve potatoes at State Fair.

GLOW LIGHT GROWING Since Wisconsin doesn’t receive enough natural light in winter and early spring, it is recommended that the teachers and students use glow lights to help aid in growing their seed potatoes included in the kits. There are directions accompanying the potatoes that are sent to the school. Some of the wonderful members of the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association donate the potatoes that are used in the program. When the Kids Dig program started back in 2009, it included just three schools. As of spring 2017, the program was used as a teaching aid by 92 teachers.

I thought it was the wives of farmers who supported their husbands and served coffee at meetings. Man, I couldn’t have been further from the truth! After attending more meetings and learning more about the Auxiliary, the reach and span of their programs is amazing.

Additionally, in 2017, there were three schools in different areas across the state of Wisconsin chosen

Today, I want to focus on the Kids Dig Wisconsin Potatoes program.

in their kidney beans.

So, what is the Kids Dig Wisconsin Potatoes program? Kids Dig is a program set up to teach students about potatoes, including growing and harvesting them, different facts about potatoes and some basic nutritional information as well. The Kids Dig program was set up back in 2009 to work with a 4thgrade-level curriculum and to run from January through April. Included in kits sent to schools are seed potatoes, lessons and activities, log sheets and fun facts.

Above: WPGA Board President Kathy Bartsch holds the rapt attention of students during a Kids Dig Wisconsin Potatoes event. Photo courtesy of Doug Foemmel

to participate in Harvest Parties. Well, then, what are harvest parties?

Partnering with growers who

continued on pg. 50

Partnering with growers who

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BC�T November 49

Auxiliary News . .

continued from pg. 49

The Auxiliary has members who travel to the chosen schools with the Spudmobile. The classes participating in the Kids Dig curriculum are thrown a special party that includes talks about the potato industry, a question and answer session, a trivia session with trading cards for students, and games, which include potato sack races, “hot potato” and potato on a spoon. The kids then dig or harvest their potatoes, and treats are handed out that incorporate potatoes, gifts are presented, and the class is given a tour of the Spudmobile. Wow, that’s a lot!

FROM 20-TO-200 Harvest Parties have been thrown in classes that vary in size from 20 kids all the way up to 200 children. In addition to the classes that participate in the curriculum, the entire school gets to visit the Spudmobile and learn more about potatoes. Since the number of schools has grown exponentially in the past few years, the Auxiliary has added on six additional Spudmobile visits to participating schools from the Spudmobile. Maybe it’s the fact that it is November, but I’ve been feeling

thankful recently. I’m thankful that harvest is over at our farm, that everyone is safe, and honestly, I’m thankful we had a crop to harvest. After the wet spring that delayed our planting, I wasn’t entirely sure what our harvest season would look like. But enough about our farm. I’m also thankful for programs such as Kids Dig Wisconsin Potatoes that help spread the word about Wisconsin potatoes to the next generation. The deadline to apply for the program is approaching shortly, so please reach out to the WPVGA office by calling 715-623-7683 if your school is interested.

WPIB Focus Wisconsin Potato Assessment Collections: Two-Year Comparison Month
















































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. 50 BC�T November

4-Row Pull-Type Windrower w/right-hand discharge and double side coulters

All Lenco Potato Harvesters & Windrowers are custom built to meet customer specifications! Advanced Farm Equipment, manufacturer of Lenco potato harvesting equipment, provides the personal interaction you wish you could get from every supplier! You choose the options you want and we make it happen, fabricating all aspects to your exact needs!

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Centrally located in Michigan, Advanced Farm Equipment manufactures Self Propelled and Pull Type Potato Harvesters and Windrowers. New in 2017, Rear Track System for better traction and reduced soil compaction. Our custom built harvesters and windrowers are hydraulically driven, controlled from the comfort of the cab, maneuver readily in adverse harvesting conditions, and have unmatched longevity spans. Now is the time to plan your 2018 harvesting needs, arrange onsite service and stock up on our large selection of ready-to-ship wear parts and tools like these handy items from our warehouse: AFE DOUBLE-HINGE CLIPS Durable, 28mm-56mm

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WISCONSIN CERTIFIED SEED POTATOES 100 Years of Seed Growing Tradition

Above: Cut seed is planted at Alsum Farms & Produce, Inc. Photo courtesy of Alsum Farms

PRIMARY BUSINESS PHONE NUMBERS ARE BOLD-FACED. BAGINSKI FARMS N3474 County H, Antigo, WI 54409 Office/Farm (715) 627-7753 Fax (715) 623-5412 Out of State (888) 446-7753 Mike Baginski (715) 627-7838 Mike Baginski Cell (715) 216-1240 Email Website Anuschka, Dark Red Norland, Elfe, Goldrush, Jelly, Malou, Russet Burbank, Russian Banana, Russet Norkotah Sel 8, Red Norland, Silverton, Superior, Soraya BULA POTATO FARMS, INC. W11957 Highland Rd, Antigo, WI 54409 Office/Warehouse (715) 275-3430 Office/Warehouse Fax (715) 275-5051 Dennis Cell (715) 216-1614 Adam Cell (715) 216-1613

Email Caribou Russet, Dark Red Norland, Goldrush, Molli, Mountain Gem, Payette Russet, Princess, Superior, Silverton, Umatilla Russet, Wega, Yukon Gold BUSHMAN’S RIVERSIDE RANCH, INC. N8151 Bushman Road, Crivitz, WI 54114 Farm (Crivitz, WI) (715) 757-2160 Jeff (715) 927-4015 Jon (715) 454-6201 Fax (715) 757-2243 Email Silverton CETS LLC ASTROTUBERSTM N77W24677 Century CT, Sussex WI 53089 Office (262) 246-1799 Fax (262) 246-1762 Cell (262) 391-4705 Website:

Your One Call Storage Solution

1-800-236-0005 •

24 Hour Emergency Service 52 BC�T November

Computerized Control Systems Refrigeration • Humidification • Ozone Electrical Design & Installation Potatoes • Onions Sprout Inhibiting Sprout Nip® • Amplify® • Shield®

EAGLE RIVER SEED FARM LLC Ron Krueger, Farm Mgr. 4334 Chain of Lakes Rd, Eagle River, WI 54521 Eagle River Warehouse (715) 479-8434 Fax (Eagle River) (715) 479-8792 Ron Krueger Cell (715) 891-0832 Email Atlantic, Alegria, Amarosa, Austrian Crescent, Beacon Chipper, B2727-2, CW08370-2RY/W, Dark Red Norland-Z, Dark Red Norland, Frito Lay Varieties, Goldrush, Hodag (W5955-1), Lamoka, Manistee, Mercury, Modoc, MSW 4852, MSW 509-5, MSV 301-2, MSV 358-3, NCO 349-3, Purple Peruvian (RPE-A), Red Norland, Russet Norkotah Sel 8, Ranger Russet ST125-10, Ranger Russet ST125-13, Ranger Russet ST116-3, Ranger Russet ST125-8, Russian Banana, Silverton, Soraya, W9962-1RY/Y, W10250-1PW/WP, W102511P/PW-Fing, Wega, W9962-1RY/Y, Vitelotte, Wendy FLEISCHMAN, DAVID FARMS N2568 Cty Hwy HH, Antigo, WI 54409 Office (715) 623-6353 Cell (715)-216-2343 Fax (715) 627-0183 Email Dark Red Norland, Goldrush, Oneida Gold, Red Norland, Russet Norkotah, Superior, Yukon Gold FRITO-LAY, INC. 4295 Tenderfoot Rd, Rhinelander, WI 54501 Josh Rahm (715) 365-1622

New grading line! Accurate sizing to meet your needs!

Fax Frito Lay Varieties

(715) 365-1620

GALLENBERG FARM, DARWIN & DAVID W8636 County B, Bryant, WI 54418 Office (715) 623-6586 Adirondack Blue, Adirondack Red, Austrian Crescent, Dark Red Norland, German Butterball, Kennebec, Red Pontiac, Yukon Gold GALLENBERG FARMS, INC. W7932 Edison Rd, Bryant, WI 54418 Farm (715) 623-7018 Roy Gallenberg (715) 627-2906 John Gallenberg (715) 623-2295 Fax (715) 627-2043 Email Dark Red Norland, Goldrush, MegaChip, Oneida Gold, Red Endeavor, Superior, W8405-1R GUENTHNER FARMS, INC. N4653 Chillie Rd, Antigo, WI 54409 Farm (715) 627-7683 Dwayne Guenthner (715) 627-0403 Bill Guenthner (715) 627-2792 Tom Schmidt (715) 216-1953 Fax (715) 627-0507 Langlade, Goldrush, Reba, Red LaSoda 10-3, Teton Russet continued on pg. 54

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 WHITES – Superiors RUSSETS – Goldrush, Russet Norkotah, Silverton REDS – Red Norland, Dark Red Norland


2017 Seed Directory. . . continued from pg. 53

GUENTHNER POTATO CO., INC. PO Box 320, Antigo, WI 54409 Office (715) 623-7877 Fax (715) 623-7127 Robert Guenthner (715) 623-7877 Email Frito Lay Varieties, NY152 HAFNER SEED FARMS, INC. W8243 County B, Bryant, WI 54418 Office/Warehouse (715) 623-6829 Fax (715) 623-4203 David Hafner (715) 623-6902 John Hafner (715) 623-6829 Atlantic, Goldrush, Lamoka, Pinnacle, Russet Norkotah, Silverton, Snowden, Superior HARTMAN FARMS, INC. N2846 County HH, Antigo, WI 54409 Michael Hartman Home (715) 623-7083 Michael Hartman Cell (715) 219-1802 Todd Hartman (715) 610-6477 John Hartman (715) 216-2059 Dark Red Norland, Goldrush, Oneida Gold, Red Endeavor, Red Norland, Russet Norkotah, Superior KAKES FARMS, LTD. W8539 Kakes Rd., Bryant, WI 54418

Farm (715) 623-6348 Dan Kakes (715) 623-7268 Dan Kakes Cell (715) 216-6348 Fax (715) 623-4614 Atlantic, Frito Lay Varieties, Goldrush, Snowden MACH’S SUNNY ACRES, INC. 3236 County HH, Antigo, WI 54409 Office/Warehouse (715) 623-5882 Fax (715) 623-5882 Ronald Mach (715) 623-6855 Kenneth Mach (715) 627-4187 Email Accumulator, Atlantic, Red LaSoda 10-3, Superior MATTEK, J. W. & SONS, INC. N5798 Star Neva Rd, Deerbrook, WI 54424 Farm/Office (715) 623-6963 Fax (715) 627-7245 Jim Mattek (715) 623-7391 John Mattek (715) 623-6864 Joe Mattek (715) 623-3156 Cell (715) 216-0599 Email Atlantic, Accumulator, Beacon Chipper, Frito Lay Varieties, Hodag(W5955-1), Lamoka, MegaChip, Manistee, Mercury, Pike, Pinnacle, Russet Norkotah Sel 8, Silverton, Snowden, W6609-3

Let’s get it straight.

You know your farm. We know precision ag. Together we can optimize every inch of your land with the data generated during field work. Vantage, an elite network of precision ag specialists backed by Trimble Agriculture, works closely with you to understand the unique needs of your operation. Our exclusive focus on precision agriculture technology enables us to integrate all of your hardware and software— regardless of brand—with complex machine, field, soil and weather data to provide you with answers to shape decisions year‑round. PRECISION WITH PURPOSE.

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54 BC�T November AG-289A-BCT_Vantage_Brand_Print Ad_Get It Straight_7.25x4.75inch_0817.indd 1

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NORTHERN SAND FARMS 11263 Cty Hwy M, Crandon, WI 54520 David Bula (715) 478-3349 Ed Bula (715) 478-3437 Lamoka, Hodag(W5955-1), Nicolet, Pinnacle, Snowden, Tundra, W6609-3, White Pearl RINE RIDGE FARMS, INC. W8132 County O, Bryant, WI 54418 Farm/Office (715) 627-4819 WATS (888) 853-5690 Fax (715) 627-4810 Ken Rine (715) 623-6791 Ken Rine Cell (715) 216-0760 Dan Rine Cell (715) 216-0765 Email Lamoka, Hodag (W5955-1), Marcy, MegaChip, Pike, W6609-3 SCHROEDER BROS. FARMS, INC./SCHROEDER FARMS, LTD. N1435 County D, Antigo, WI 54409 Office/Farm (715) 623-2689 Fax (715) 627-4857 Warehouse, Schr. Farms, Ltd. (715) 627-7022 John T. Schroeder (715) 623-5735 Pete Schroeder (715) 627-4069 Robert Schroeder (715) 623-3113 Eric Schroeder Cell (715) 216-0186 Farm Email John T Email Eric Email Atlantic, Dark Red Norland, Frito Lay Varieties, Goldrush, Lamoka, MegaChip, Pike, Red Norland, Red Endeavor, Russet Burbank, Russet Norkotah Sel 8, Russet Norkotah TX 296, Silverton, Soraya, Snowden, Superior SEIDL FARMS, INC. N5677 Chillie Rd, Deerbrook, WI 54424 Farm/Office (715) 623-6236 Fax (715) 623-4377 Art Seidl (715) 623-6236 Frank Seidl (715) 484-2052 Jeff Fassbender (715) 216-4433 Atlantic, Goldrush, Red Norland, Russet Norkotah, Snowden SOWINSKI FARMS, INC. - CERTIFIED SEED 4698 Tenderfoot Road, Rhinelander, WI 54501 Paul Sowinski (715) 272-1192 John Hein, Seed Mgr. Cell (715) 369-3225 Farm/Office (715) 369-3225 Fax (715) 369-3226

Email Atlantic, Lamoka, Pinnacle, Frito Lay Varieties, Snowden, Waneta SUNNYDALE FARMS, INC. W9751 County I, Bryant, WI 54418 Farm (715) 627-7401 Mike Shafel Cell (715) 216-4531 James Shafel Cell (715) 216-4532 Fax (715) 627-4114 Email Atlantic, Adirondack Blue, Dark Red Norland, Oneida Gold, Red Norland, Red Gold, Snowden, Superior, Yukon Gold, W8405-1R VERMONT VALLEY COMMUNITY FARM LLC Organic Seed Potatoes 4628 Cty Hwy FF, Blue Mounds, WI 53517 David or Jesse Perkins (608) 212-7816 Email Website Adirondack Blue, Adirondack Red, All Blue, Austrian Crescent Carola, Dark Red Norland, French Fingerling, German Butterball, Goldrush, Kennebec, Magic Molly, Oneida Gold, Peter Wilcox, Red Endeavor, Red Gold, Superior, W8405-1R, Yukon Gold WILD SEED FARMS, INC. W9797 Cherry Rd, Antigo, WI 54409 Warehouse/Office (715) 623-3366 Fax (715) 623-5245 Tom Wild Cell (715) 216-1223 Dan Wild Cell (715) 216-1225 Email Atlantic, Frito Lay Varieties, Red LaSoda 10-3, Snowden, Superior WIRZ, INC. N3581 Wirz Lane, Antigo, WI 54409 Donald Wirz (715) 627-7739 WATS (888) 257-7739 Fax (715) 627-4523 Cell (715) 216-4035 Shop (715) 627-2860 Email Website Atlantic, Lamoka, MegaChip, Nicolet, Pike, Snowden, White Pearl

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Seed Piece Jay-Mar Field Day Showcases Corn Seed Varieties By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater

Corn hybrids played the starring role at the Jay-Mar, Inc. Field Day, September 6, on land owned by Isherwood Family Farms. The Corn Hybrid Field Day is an annual event showcasing varieties available from Jay-Mar. In all, 200 people attended the field day, each of whom received $7 off each bag of corn they buy and $3 off soybeans for registering, signing in and attending, and the opportunity to see how certain corn varieties

perform in the field. “We encouraged LG Seeds, Jung Seed Genetics and Legend Seeds to choose their best seven or eight corn varieties, which were planted in rows for attendees to inspect,”






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says Wayne Solinsky of Jay-Mar. Goldrush potatoes were previously planted on the field of pearl loamy sand, which was tilled using discs, leveling tines and rolling baskets and treated with two applications of Roundup herbicide. The planting population is 34,200 plants per acre. “Each variety is eventually tested with weigh wagons to measure yield. Above: Nathan Falk (right) of Jung Seed Company discusses corn varieties with Paul Yenter (left) and Brad Williams (center), growers from Amherst Junction, Wisconsin, at the Jay-Mar Field Day, September 6. Opposite Page: Left: Attendees of Jay-Mar’s Corn Hybrid Field Day were required to register to not only receive seed discounts, but also for the opportunity to see how certain corn and soybean varieties perform in the field. Right: Jay-Mar’s Wayne Solinsky (left) points to a row of corn and discusses the variety with growers who attended the Corn Hybrid Field Day, September 6.

Typically, each variety has an 85-101-day maturity rate,” Solinsky explains. Jay-Mar added a soybean plot to their field day, with inoculated seed from LG Seeds, Bio Gene, Jung Seed Genetics, Pioneer and Legend Seeds. Corn was previously planted on the plot consisting of Richford loamy sand, which was chisel plowed and populated with 160,000 plants per acre.

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Call Dennis or Adam: Work: (715) 275-3430 • FAX: (715) 275-5051 • Email: or BC�T November 57

Now News

Alsum Partners with Green Bay Packers

Fans enter contest to win bi-monthly prizes and free groceries for a month Alsum Farms & Produce, Inc. is partnering with the Green Bay Packers to invite fans to enter for a chance to win Free Groceries for a Month. From now through November 30, 2017, Packers fans can enter for a chance to win a month’s worth of free groceries at AlsumSweepstakes. In addition, fans can win bi-monthly Right: The Free Groceries for a Month promotion encourages football fans to look for nutritious, homegrown Wisconsin potatoes at the grocery store and make Alsum brand potatoes a part of their game day and everyday meals. The Alsum Farms & Produce bins promote fast and fresh microwave-, grill- and oven-ready Wisconsin potatoes.


AgCountry Farm Credit Services provides operating loans, home loans, real estate financing and equipment loans and leases as well as services for tax planning and preparation, farm accounting, appraisal, crop insurance and succession and retirement planning. Contact your local office to learn more. • Follow us on social media

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58 BC�T November

Antigo,WI 623-7644 or 800-324-5755 Stevens Point, WI 344-1000 or 800-324-5754

prizes including Alsum potatoes along with grilling accessories during the contest. “Alsum Farms & Produce is excited to partner with the Green Bay Packers for the fourth year in a row,” says Heidi Alsum-Randall, chief operating officer of Alsum Farms & Produce. “The Free Groceries for a Month promotion encourages football fans to look for nutritious, homegrown Wisconsin potatoes at the grocery store and make Alsum brand potatoes a part of their game day and everyday meals,” Alsum-Randall adds. One lucky fan will win the ultimate—a month’s worth of free groceries—which will be a $500 gift card to a retail grocery partner chosen by the winner. In addition, six fans will win a bi-monthly prize

pack that will include Alsum potatoes along with grilling accessories. Complete sweepstakes rules can be found at the contest site. For more than four decades, Alsum Farms & Produce has been a leading grower, packer and shipper of locally grown potatoes and onions,

Farm Bureau supports Votes That Fund Ag Issues Positive votes approve funding for programs that directly affect area farmers The Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation is supportive of the latest votes from Joint Finance Committee members on Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) and Department of Natural Resources (DNR) issues that impact farmers. The Joint Committee on Finance resumed action on the state budget after a nearly 10-week delay to continue their work on the two-year, $76 billion spending package. On August 24, two omnibus motions were adopted to complete work on the DATCP and environmental quality provisions within the DNR. “The Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation has been anxiously waiting for the completion of these two issue areas because these

programs and funding impact farmers greatly,” said Paul Zimmerman, executive director of governmental relations. “After August’s votes, we feel confident that this budget is a solid package for farmers across the state. Now, it just needs to cross the finish

and a provider of fresh, quality produce. To learn more about Alsum Farms & Produce, its full line of products or for delicious potato recipes, visit www. Above: To enter the Alsum Farms & Produce and Green Bay Packers contest to win free groceries for a month, visit AlsumSweepstakes before November 30.

line,” Zimmerman added. The Committee adopted the DATCP omnibus budget motion on a bipartisan 16-0 vote. Some of the major provisions include: • Continuation of the Farm to School program, including funding for a school coordinator position and retaining the Farm to School Advisory Council • Adopts comprehensive changes in program structure, licenses and surcharges in the Agrichemical Management Fund (ACM) and the Agricultural Chemical Cleanup continued on pg. 60

GALLENBERG FARMS, INC. N4528 Clover Road • Antigo, WI 54409

FOUNDATION AND CERTIFIED SEED Dark Red Norlands • MegaChips • Superiors • Goldrush Red Endeavor • Oneida Gold • W8405-1R

715-623-7018 or 715-627-2906 Fax: 715-627-2043 •

BC�T November 59

Now News. . .

continued from pg. 59

Program (ACCP) as developed by stakeholder groups during the last 18 months • Continues funding the livestock premise registration program with an additional $100,000 annually

The committee also adopted an omnibus motion on a 12-4 vote to complete the environmental quality section of the DNR. Some key provisions of the package include:

• Increases aid to county fairs by $25,000 for an annual appropriation of $431,400

• An increase of $900,000 annually for county conservation staffing grants for total base funding of just over $8.9 million a year

“The fact that there was unanimous bi-partisan support for the DATCP package speaks to the importance and non-partisan nature of agriculture in this state,” said Zimmerman. “Wisconsin Farm Bureau wants to extend a thank you to all the members of the committee for their work.”

• Maintains funding for the very popular producer-led watershed protection grant program and increases the maximum state match from $20,000 per watershed to $40,000

• Provides an additional $825,000 annually for soil and water resource management (non-point) grants

•P  rovides funding to study the hydrology of certain water bodies designated in the high-capacity-well legislation passed earlier this year •P  rovides $100,000 in grant money to design solutions to increase flow in the Little Plover River “Farm Bureau is committed to these conservation initiatives and we’re pleased the committee is as well,” said Zimmerman. “The county conservation staffing grants, nonpoint grants, producer-led watershed grants and the hydrology funding are all key provisions that will help farmers become more effective stewards of their lands.”

Midwestern BioAg Awarded Research Grant Funding helps develop organic-allowed version of TerraNu Fertilizer Midwestern BioAg, Inc. has received a Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The grant will fund development of an organic-allowed version of TerraNu fertilizer, a new class

of fertilizer manufactured with anaerobically digested manure. The project builds on the company’s earlier innovation, TerraNu Nutrient Technology™, which transforms dairy manure and plant nutrients into

GET INVOLVED, STAY INFORMED, BE AWARE! Join Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) and keep abreast of what is happening in your industry. Find out how to become a member today. Go to:

Stake a claim in your future today! 60 BC�T November

a uniform, dry fertilizer granule that can be efficiently stored, transported, blended and spread. The objective of the project is to develop a form of TerraNu fertilizer that can be used on certified-organic farms. The USDA’s SBIR program offers grants to qualified small businesses to support research of important scientific problems and opportunities in agriculture, especially projects that could lead to significant public benefits. Dr. Maggie Phillips, director of research and development at Midwestern BioAg, will lead the project. “Manure is an important nutrient source, especially for our organic customers,” says Dr. Phillips. “Currently, TerraNu fertilizers are designed to enhance the crops on conventional farms by feeding soil biology and providing balanced mineral nutrition.” ALL CROP PRODUCTION “Through this funding, we hope

to develop an organic-allowed version of these products and bring the benefits of TerraNu Nutrient Technology to all types of crop production,” she adds. TerraNu Nutrient Technology facilitates easy transfer of nutrients from livestock manure to distant rowcrop farms, thereby reducing impacts to local water supplies. Making this

product available to the organic market offers important benefits to growers and their communities. “Our new process makes nutrient recycling from manure beneficial to both dairies and crop producers,” says Dr. Phillips. “Growing the market with an organic-approved TerraNu fertilizer helps more growers contribute to preservation of our

natural resources.” Midwestern BioAg, based in Madison, Wisconsin, manufactures and distributes fertilizers that build soil health to increase yields and quality of both food and forage. For more information about TerraNu fertilizers, visit www.MidwesternBioAg. com/TerraNu.

Potato TV to Debut at Potato Expo 2018 “Live Eye” will include interviews with experts, attendees and more Potato Expo introduces “The Eye,” a live streaming network covering activities taking place at Potato Expo 2018. The Eye reporters will cover the excitement from the show floor in addition to in-depth interviews at The Eye Booth #636. All interviews, as well as highlights from the third annual Spud Nation Throwdown Cook-off and featured sessions in the new Potato Expo Innovation Hub, will live stream throughout the convention on Facebook Live and YouTube. “The Eye will provide a full 360-degree view of the trade show, making it more informative, interesting and fun,” says Jim Tiede, co-chair of Potato Expo 2018. “It’s truly ‘must-see TV’ for the potato industry.”

educational topics such as production, research, consumer trends, food safety, globalization, food service, labor and use of marketing and social media to network, increase sales and more. The Potato Expo Innovation Hub “Main Stage” will feature 12 events over two-and-a-half days. In addition, there are nearly 20 breakout sessions taking place in other locations. In addition, the 2018 Spud Nation Throwdown Cook-off takes on a new twist: 100 percent impartiality. In its third annual year, test kitchen culinarians from the biggest brands

who market potatoes or use potatoes in their ingredients will don their chef hats and head to the stage where they will prepare their most innovative dishes. Hosted by Phil Lempert, the Supermarket Guru, the Spud Nation Throwdown judging panel will taste each chef’s creation blindfolded to offer their objective reviews. The Throwdown takes place over two days with two finalists competing one-on-one to turn mystery ingredients left for them on the stage into a Spud Nation winning dish. For more information, please visit

Celebrating its tenth year, Potato Expo 2018 is expected to be the largest in its history, drawing more than 2,000 attendees and over 180 exhibiting companies. Potato Expo takes place January 10-12, 2018 at the Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando, Florida. Located on the trade show floor, the Potato Expo Innovation Hub will be the center of education programming and will include presentations, panel discussions, research findings and potatoes as the stars of the food world. EDUCATIONAL TOPICS Sessions include a variety of

Soil • Plant Tissue • Water • Nutrient Management Ask about our seasonal GAP water sample pick-ups! • 715.758.2178 ©2017 All rights reserved. AgSource Cooperative Services A-15894-17

BC�T November 61

Badger Beat

Response to Potato Blackleg Critical for Control By Alex Crockford, Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program Director, University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Plant Pathology

Potato blackleg remains a concern for Wisconsin growers. Granted, some of the most severe disease impacts have been to commercial crops in southern climates. Yet, response to the disease is integral for Wisconsin seed growers’ ongoing market opportunities in southern and tropical markets, as well as for local markets given years of prevalent moisture and disease promotive weather. The primary bacterial pathogens that cause potato blackleg and tuber soft rot are Pectobacterium atrosepticum, P. carotovorum, P. wasabiae, and more recently in the United States, Dickeya spp. Previously, all these pathogens were grouped in the same genus Erwinia.

The most popular varieties of these world-class hybrids are going fast.

Dickeya and Pectobacterium affect many host species, including potato. Dickeya dianthicola was confirmed in the eastern United States in 2015, causing significant potato losses in some areas. Dickeya is moved over long distances via seed potatoes. Under disease-

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Above: Typical symptoms of Dickeya-infected potato tuber post-harvest include brown discoloration and sunken, wet appearance of the tissue, most often at the stolon end.

promoting conditions, infected seed can result in symptoms of poor crop emergence, chlorosis, wilting, tuber and stem rot, darkened or black stems, which are slimy, and ultimately, death. These symptoms result from the cellwall-degrading enzyme activity of the bacteria within the plant tissues on which they infect. Blackleg and soft rot bacterial diseases, including those caused by Pectobacterium and Dickeya spp., are promoted by cool, wet conditions at planting, and high temperatures after emergence. PATHOGEN SPREAD While the pathogens can be spread the greatest distances in infested seed, other sources of inoculum include soil, irrigation water and insects. Levels of infection are dependent upon seed-handling/cutting techniques; soil moisture and temperature at planting and emergence; cultivar susceptibility; severity of infection of seed; and potentially the level of bacteria in irrigation water, cull piles or other external sources. Sanitation and disinfesting of potato cutting equipment and proper handling reduce spread and aid in control of the pathogen. Treating seed to prevent seed piece decay by fungi can also contribute to blackleg control. The need for increased detection

62 BC�T November

and management of this disease has prompted additional sampling and monitoring efforts by the University of Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program to better understand the incidence and impact of the pathogen in seed potatoes. An effective certification response can be one of the most impactful management tools to reduce incidence of this pathogen, overall, and support management across the industry. The Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program is preemptive in developing certification tools that vigilantly mitigate risk at every control point. Our team has a heightened awareness of blackleg during field inspections, field harvesttime inspections, dormant tuber testing and post-harvest inspections.

in time, providing informative, complementary data to the dormant tuber testing.

Left: Dickeya dianthicola can be destructive in southern markets.

Our work to date has supported the widespread use of dormant tuber testing protocols used nationally, and such testing is available through our program.

RIght: In a post-harvest test, the plant tested positive for blackleg, which is related to a positive seed lot with a positive dormant tuber test. Positive tests in the post-harvest evaluation are followed with a dormant tuber sample.

With these efforts, the incidence of Dickeya dianthicola has remained very low in Wisconsin seed. In fact, affected acres last year were less than 4 percent, and are at 2 percent this year, with growers eliminating seed lots and testing incoming seed for recertification.

Currently, laboratory testing procedures across the country are effectively detecting Dickeya in plant tissues. However, tests on dormant tubers require some optimization to improve success in determining incidence per given seed lot.

AGGRESSIVE DIAGNOSTICS Wisconsin has been a forerunner in its aggressive diagnostic approaches, including dormant seed testing in 2015 and 2016, and a multifaceted response in 2017. In early 2017, we learned that symptomatic plants in the postharvest test correlated to known positive lots from summer inspections and dormant tuber tests from the previous season. The DNA isolated from these plants tested positive. During first field inspections, blackleg and blackleg samples were collected for each lot. At harvest, tubers with blackleg symptoms were submitted for diagnostics. It is possible to detect Dickeya species at each of these points BC�T November 63

New Products John Deere Adds Narrow-Track Machines to Lineup Ideal for row crops, new 9RX models have all the benefits of tracks in narrow profiles John Deere introduces three new 9RX Narrow Track Tractors, expanding its lineup of high-horsepower machines. Equipped with narrow undercarriages, the four-track tractors are an ideal fit for 22-, 30and 40-inch row-crop applications. Three models are available in 420, 470 or 520 horsepower to easily handle high-speed planters, nutrient application bars, large grain carts or other high-horsepower needs. With this introduction, the John

Deere 9 family of tractors now includes wheeled, two- and fourtrack setups and narrow- or wideundercarriage configurations. “No other tractor manufacturer offers customers so many choices in highhorsepower tractors, and they’re each backed by the best dealer network in the industry,” says Tiffany Turner, product marketing manager for John Deere. All 9RX Narrow Track Tractors provide row-crop farmers the

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

ability to cover more acres per day with improved capabilities, more horsepower featuring the latest advances in engine technology and enhanced flotation along with plenty of ground-gripping traction. Each narrow-undercarriage tractor can be fitted with available 18- or 24inch wide tracks set to a track spacing of 80, 88 or 120 inches. REDUCED SOIL COMPACTION “When a 9RX Narrow Track Tractor is utilized in a row-crop setting, there are only two track paths going down the row instead of the tracks made by tractors equipped with duals or triples,” says Turner. “Narrow track tractors can reduce the negative agronomic effects on pinch rows, reduce soil compaction and minimize soil disturbance for greater yield potential.” A roomy, well-equipped CommandViewTM III cab on the 9RX Narrow Track features four-corner cab suspension with four inches of travel, and ActiveCommandTM Steering, providing operators with day-long comfort in the field. “The matched, full-width mid-rollers reduce pressure, heat and wear, and extend wear life of the tracks. Rubber continued on pg. 66

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BC�T November 65

New Products. . .

continued from pg. 64

isolators and oscillating mid-rollers minimize cab vibration and provide an ultra-smooth ride,” Turner adds. Inside the tractor cab, integrated technology drives efficiency in the field. Important machine functions are easily monitored and controlled using the integrated Gen 4 CommandCenterTM Display.

“A touch-screen on the Gen 4 Display makes it easy to watch and manage different aspects of machine performance and precision-ag technology, including AutoTracTM,” Turner says. Large jobs are more manageable and long days in the field quickly pass by thanks to a 400-gallon diesel fuel

tank, increased hydraulic capacity and the integrated guidance and information management systems available on these new tractors. John Deere is currently taking orders for 9RX Narrow Track Tractors and will begin production in January 2018. For more information, contact your local John Deere dealer or visit

Reversing Sensors Make Loading Hopper Easier Tong Caretaker mobile grader comes with hopper-loading version of parking sensors Tong’s market-leading Caretaker mobile grader is now available with trailer reversing sensors that make loading the grader’s hopper much quicker, safer, easier and more accurate than ever before.

grader are advancing all the time, incorporating new options and technical features that save time and make the grading process more efficient,” says Nick Woodcock, sales manager at Tong Engineering.

Designed to provide operators with the hopper-loading version of parking sensors, the new trailer reversing system features a fully adjustable proximity sensor that detects the position of the trailer while reversing, and signals the driver once it is in place for tipping.

“The latest option of trailer reversing sensors is proving very popular with growers when specifying a new machine, as it not only speeds up the transfer of crop to the hopper, but also ensures no spillage and safeguards against bumps and scrapes that can occur in the hopper loading process,” Woodcock explains.

“The latest models of our Caretaker

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“The Caretaker hopper is fitted with two identical LED ‘traffic light’ units, one at each side of the hopper, that signal green while the trailer slowly approaches the hopper, and turn red to signal stop once the trailer is in position,” he says. “It really is that simple.” The hopper’s proximity reversing sensor is suitable for use on practically any unloading vehicle, be it trailer or bulker, and can be easily adjusted by the operator for notably different unloading trailers. “This new option is proving very popular,” added Nick, “and I’m sure this will become one of those must-have features for customers specifying new models of our most advanced Caretaker grader.” For more information, email Carole Metcalfe at Tong Engineering,

Choose the Right Business Entity Entity structure impacts liability, taxation, management or control, succession and transfer By Attorney Amy E. Ebeling, Ruder Ware Are you using the right business entity for your farm or other agribusiness? I have worked with too many clients who have paid additional tax dollars or have been unable to achieve their succession

planning goals due to their entity structure. Learn from their mistakes. Selecting and using the right entity is essential to a successful, profitable business. An entity structure impacts legal liability, taxation, management

or control, succession planning or transfer options, and a number of other issues. Therefore, it is prudent that careful consideration be given to each of these issues before selecting an entity structure. These issues should also be regularly re-evaluated to ensure the entity selection remains appropriate for ongoing business operations. In Wisconsin, there are several legal entity structures available to agribusinesses. Only two of those structures, however, are generally recommended for use by agribusinesses—the business corporation and the limited liability company. Both entity structures offer the most liability protection, receive favorable tax treatment, provide flexibility with respect to management, and furnish a variety of business planning or transfer options. Above: A successful agribusiness starts with the ability to have liability protection, favorable tax treatment, flexibility with respect to management and a variety of business planning or transfer options. Shown is Coloma Farms in Coloma, Wisconsin.

68 BC�T November

LIABILITY PROTECTION Protection from legal liability is one of the greatest advantages of using a legal entity, but not all entities provide liability protection. Certain entity structures can protect your personal assets from the creditors of your business operations. For example, if an employee or independent contractor is injured on your farm, a proper legal entity could protect your personal assets from an injury lawsuit against your operation. Again, business corporations and limited liability companies are best suited to provide legal liability protection. Business owners should steer clear of sole proprietorships and certain partnerships, as they do not provide any liability protection.

liability companies is adherence to the entity structure.

The key to liability protection for business corporations and limited

Such activities include: (1) keeping separate bank accounts so personal


s Paid Here, Stay ium He em r r P




To adhere to the entity structure, the owners must engage in activities that show the business operation is separate from the owners.

Above: Management of an agribusiness is one of the largest factors in selecting an entity structure, because the entity’s structure determines who has power over decisions. Cut seed potatoes are planted on Alsum Farms.

assets/funds are not co-mingled with business assets/funds; (2) making business decisions in continued on pg. 70


To Kee ng. p Wisconsin Stro

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

Rural Mutual Insurance Company BC�T November 69

Choose the Right Business Entity. . . continued from pg. 69

accordance with the procedures set forth in the entity documents; and (3) keeping and maintaining records concerning those decisions and other business activities. If the entity structure is not respected, the business will simply be treated as an “alter ego” of the owner and the liability protection will cease. TAX TREATMENT The most favorable tax treatment depends on the activities of the business and the desires/wishes of the owners. Some entities are eligible for passthrough taxation in which only the owners pay the tax on the business’s income. Other entities are subject to double taxation (i.e., both the entity and

the owner pay tax on the income), but those entities may have more favorable tax rates, tax deductions or fringe benefits.

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.

70 BC�T November

Above: In Wisconsin, there are several legal entity structures available to agribusinesses, but only the business corporation and limited liability company are generally recommended for use by agribusinesses. A truck and tractor/trailer are loaded and weighed at Insight FS in Antigo.

wausau | eau claire visit our blogs at

Ownership structures with limited control can aid in the education and development of future owners of an agribusiness without putting the business at risk. For example, owners of passthrough entities generally pay selfemployment tax on all business income, while double taxation entities pay lower employment taxes on salaries paid to owner-employees. Again, flexibility is key, and both business corporations and limited liability companies may be taxed as either pass-through or double taxation entities, and which tax status is best depends on your particular circumstances. Management of a business is one of the largest factors in selecting an entity structure, because the entity’s structure determines who has power over decisions, the amount of decision-making power of each owner and what decisions, if any, can be made by non-owners.

more flexibility when transferring ownership from one generation to the next. Selection and continued use of an entity structure should be carefully reviewed as current owners age and consider succession planning options and/or transfers to the next generation.

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In the end, choosing an entity structure is a thoughtful process that requires weighing the pros and cons. Do not pay additional tax dollars or be forced to liquidate your operation because of your entity selection. Choose carefully and seek the assistance of your trusted advisors when necessary.

Release more nutrition. Expect more results.

Check state registration to make sure product is registered in your state.

For example, some owners may only own non-voting interests and have no ability to participate in management of the business. TRANSFERRING OWNERSHIP Ownership structures with limited control can aid in the education and development of future owners of an agribusiness without putting the business at risk. Careful consideration should be given to the management structure of an entity to ensure that the business is protected from poor decision making. Planning for the transition of an agribusiness is a complicated process that requires weighing legal, economic and family dynamics factors. Unfortunately, the transition process can be further complicated by the entity structure currently utilized by the business. Certain entities provide

Jim Hoffa 715-366-4181 715-340-4757

Todd Schill 715-335-4900 715-498-2020

Crop Protection Products Variable Rate Fertilizer Application Soil Fumigation • Liquid Fertilizer Bulk & Bagged Fertilizer Seed: Dyna-Gro, Dekalb, Syngenta, Mycogen BC�T November 71

POTATOES USA NEWS Myanmar Accepts U.S. Fresh & Seed Potatoes U.S. fresh and seed potatoes were the first American produce products approved for importation into Myanmar under new rules for fresh horticulture that required a formal plant health risk assessment. Potatoes USA worked closely with U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to submit the required documents, and also met with the Myanmar plant health officials in person earlier in 2017. As a result, the first shipment of U.S. chipping potatoes was sent to Myanmar in September. The shipment was arranged by Potatoes USA and utilized Quality Samples Program funding from the USDA. The container of approximately 25 tons was distributed among four local processing companies, most of which were small businesses. These processors, who regularly use local Myanmar potatoes, had been experiencing issues with inconsistent

quality and size. Confident that U.S. chip-stock potatoes would result in a much higher quality product, the Potatoes USA Myanmar team arranged this trial shipment. Each of the processors conducted product trials, and each reported that U.S. potatoes produced chips that were far superior to those made from the local potatoes. Waste was reduced, the shape and color were better, the chips absorbed less oil,

Above: Potatoes are harvested in Myanmar so that trial data can be gathered.

and importantly, the taste of the chips was delicious. Resulting from the product trials, several processors expressed interest in pursuing purchases of U.S. chip-stock potatoes. This is a great new opportunity for U.S. potatoes, and Potatoes USA will continue to work to facilitate this trade.

July 2017 Exports Up for U.S. Potatoes & Products Exports of frozen, dehydrated and fresh potatoes in July 2017 all showed gains compared to July 2016. The volume of frozen exports was up 1 percent, with the value gaining 3 percent to $94 million. The volume of exports of dehydrated potatoes was up 12 percent with the value also up 12 percent to $17 million. Fresh potato export volume was up 51 percent and the value gaining 41 percent to $33 million. Exports of frozen potato products to Mexico and Japan continued their recent recovery and were up 11 percent and 10 percent, respectively. Exports to other countries included 72 BC�T November

Korea, up 10 percent; Malaysia, gaining 10 percent; the Philippines, up 13 percent, and all continued the strong growth from last marketing year.

Unfortunately, other countries, such as China (-11 percent), Malaysia (-58 percent) and Korea (-83 percent), continued their recent declines.

Declines were seen in China (-31 percent), Indonesia (-69 percent), Thailand (-32 percent) and Central America (-20 percent). Â

Fresh exports, both table stock and chip stock, saw significant positive growth for July 2017 compared to 2016, with the largest fresh export market, Canada, up 49 percent.

Dehydrated exports continued increases from the last quarter of the previous marketing year, and were led by a 26 percent increase to Mexico, a 123 percent jump to Indonesia, an 88 percent increase to the Philippines and a 26 percent increase to Japan.

Many markets in Asia were up significantly, including the Philippines at 311 percent, Taiwan at 142 percent, Japan, up 103 percent and Malaysia, up 90 percent. Mexico did see a decline of 6 percent and Central America was off 39 percent.

Ali's Kitchen “Berta’s Potato Cheddar Beer Bacon Soup”—That’s a Mouthful! Column and photos by Ali Carter, Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary

I am always intrigued to hear of the creations my friends come up with in the kitchen. When someone tells me that they have a favorite recipe, I rarely hesitate to ask for details, and when I am lucky, they share the recipe with me. Recently a kind friend offered the recipe for her potato soup. This soup is filled with flavor, from the bacon and sharp cheddar cheese to the hoppy beer. Plus, it’s made in the crockpot! Who doesn’t love the ease of these meals during the fall and winter months? Place everything into the crockpot in the morning and with minimal prep and little attention you have a filling

and hearty potato soup ready at the end of a busy day. I followed my friend’s recipe with one tiny adjustment. Rather than the bacon bits she suggests, I used some already cooked and crumbled bacon I had in my fridge. It was left over from a breakfast bake I had made the previous morning and ended up being a great addition to this soup. However, if bacon bits are on hand at your house, I can see how they’d be a tasty and easy part of the recipe. Happy fall everyone and enjoy! continued on pg. 74

INGREDIENTS: 1 26-to-30 oz. bag of frozen, diced hash browns 2 bottles of beer (more or less to taste) 1 32 oz. box of Swanson’s chicken broth 1 can of Campbell’s cream of chicken soup (10.5 oz.) 1 pkg. Philadelphia cream cheese (8 oz., not fat free) 3 oz. Hormel bacon bits 4 cups Sargento fine, shredded, sharp cheddar cheese 1 tbs. onion powder 3 tsps. dried parsley 3 tbs. chopped, dried chives salt and coarse-ground black pepper to taste Plus one cup Sargento fine, shredded, sharp cheddar cheese for garnish at serving BC�T November 73

Advertisers Index Ali's Kitchen. . .

continued from pg. 73

DIRECTIONS 1. Put the hash browns in the crock pot. Add in the chicken broth, one bottle of beer, cheese, cream of chicken soup, bacon bits, chives and onion powder. Add salt and pepper. Cook on low for 6-7 hours, or until potatoes are tender.

2. T wo hours before serving, cut the cream cheese into small cubes and place the cubes in the crock pot. Stir every 15 minutes or so as the cream cheese melts. Add parsley. 3. T op with cheddar cheese and some additional bacon bits.

Serving Wisconsin & Michigan’s Upper Peninsula Antigo (715) 627-4844 Amherst Junction (715) 824-3151 Wautoma (920) 787-3307 Wisconsin Rapids (715) 423-6280


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You’d be healthier, too, if you spent your winters in Hawaii.

100% of Wisconsin Seed Potatoes must be winter tested to be eligible for certified seed tags.

• While all state seed potato associations winter test their foundation lots, some do not winter test 100% of their certified seed lots. • Wisconsin does, and this assures you get only the top-quality seed. • With the Wisconsin Badger State Brand Tag, you get one grade, one standard–certification that counts.

Don’t bet your farm on untested seed potatoes. Check the winter test results and Begin with the Best — Wisconsin! WISCONSIN CERTIFIED SEED POTATOES

Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association, Inc.

P.O. Box 173 • Antigo, WI 54409 • 715-623-4039 •

For a directory of Wisconsin Certified Seed Potato Growers, scan this code with your smartphone.

P.O. Box 327 Antigo, WI 54409

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


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Custer, WI 54423

1711_Badger Common'Tater  

Annual Seed Issue covers Growers' Hurricane Relief Effort, 2017 Wisconsin Certified Seed Potato Growers Directory, what to do "When the Depa...