$18/year | $1.50/copy | Volume 70 No. 2 | FEBRUARY 2018
THE VOICE OF WISCONSIN'S POTATO & VEGETABLE INDUSTRY
EQUIPMENT/SUPPLIES & POTATO EXPO COVERAGE ISSUE
FRENCH FRIES NOT So Deadly After All! POTATO EXPO MARKS 10-Year Anniversary HOW THE TAX BILL Affects Potato Growers 2nd ANNUAL “REDOX U” Hits Hinterland Brewery
Adam Flyte Owner, Flyte Family Farms
Twelve-year-old Taylor Flyte waits for a ride home after a long day of disking.
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On the Cover: Not too many 12-year-old boys can say they had a long day disking. But there aren’t a lot of kids who grew up cultivating potato fields like Taylor Flyte and his siblings, Mikayla and Tristan, the children of Adam and Carrie Flyte of Flyte Family Farms. This issue’s interview subject, Adam fondly recalls riding with his mom on their Honey Bee Farmall tractor to cultivate, and takes pride in seeing his kids take turns on the same tractor with their grandmother.
8 BADGER COMMON’TATER INTERVIEW: Adam Flyte of Flyte Family Farms monitors the health of his organic sweet potatoes. Adam and his wife, Carrie, run a diverse potato, fruit and vegetable farm, raising Goldrush and Silverton potatoes, hydroponic tomatoes, English cucumbers and peppers, field and sweet corn, sweet potatoes, soybeans, hay, peas, snap beans, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and livestock. Recently, they began growing Creamer potatoes for The Little Potato Company.
DEPARTMENTS: ALI’S KITCHEN................... 65 AUXILIARY NEWS.............. 61 BADGER BEAT................... 49
16 FRENCH FRIES HOLD NUTRITIONAL VALUE Contrary to reports, fries are not so deadly after all
POTATOES USA NEWS
For transforming its store into a Wisconsin potatoes showcase, Trig’s wins UTV
Exciting “Travel to Taste” cooking show in Myanmar features U.S. potato dishes
EYES ON ASSOCIATES........ 60 MARK YOUR CALENDAR..... 6 NEW PRODUCTS............... 54 NOW NEWS...................... 34 NPC NEWS........................ 55
PEOPLE ............................ 30
22 POTATO EXPO celebrates 10 years as a relevant, vibrant, must-see trade show
PLANTING IDEAS................ 6
46 THE TAX BILL affects potato growers positively and, in some cases, negatively
SEED PIECE........................ 41
56 “REDOX U” #2: Company reps discuss plant nutrients and microbial products
WPIB FOCUS..................... 53
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
Treasurer: Nick Laudenbach Directors: Paul Cieslewicz, Kenton Mehlberg, Zach Mykisen & Joel Zalewski Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association Board of Directors: President: Bill Guenthner Vice President: Charlie Mattek Secretary/Treasurer: J.D. Schroeder Directors: Jeff Fassbender, Dan Kakes
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: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.wisconsinpotatoes.com Like Us On Facebook: www.facebook.com/WPVGA
Mission Statement of the WPVGA: To advance the interests of WPVGA members through education, information, environmentally sound research, promotion, governmental action and involvement. Mission Statement of the WPVGA Associate Division: 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: http://wisconsinpotatoes.com/blog-news/subscribe/ ADVERTISING: To advertise your service or product in this magazine, call (715) 630-6213, or email: Joe Kertzman: email@example.com. The editor welcomes manuscripts and pictures but accepts no responsibility for such material while in our hands. BC�T February
Calendar FEBRUARY 6-8
WPVGA GROWER EDUCATION CONFERENCE & INDUSTRY SHOW Holiday Inn Stevens Point, WI
UNITED OF WISCONSIN ANNUAL MEETING Smiley’s Banquet Hall Plover, WI
INTERNATIONAL CROP EXPO Alerus Center Grand Forks, ND
MIDWEST MINT GROWERS MEETING Wilderness Resort Wisconsin Dells, WI
POTATO D.C. FLY-IN Capital Hilton Washington, D.C.
2018 WI COVER CROP CONFERENCE Holiday Inn Stevens Point, WI
BPIA BIOCONTROL CONFERENCE Sheraton Carlsbad Resort & Spa San Diego, CA
POTATOES USA ANNUAL MEETING Marriott City Center Denver, CO
WPS FARM SHOW Experimental Aircraft Association Grounds Oshkosh, WI
WORLD POTATO CONGRESS Cusco, Peru
SPUD SEED CLASSIC WSPIA GOLF OUTING Bass Lake Golf Course Deerbrook, WI
UNITED FRESH McCormick Place Chicago, IL
FARM TECHNOLOGY DAYS Marshfield/Wood County, WI
RHINELANDER AG RESEARCH STATION FIELD DAY Rhinelander, WI
ASSOCIATE DIV. PUTT-TATO OPEN GOLF OUTING Lake Arrowhead Golf Course Nekoosa, WI
Planting Ideas “Opportunities? They are all around us… There is power living latent everywhere waiting for the observant eye to discover it.” The agriculture industry not only embraces philosophies such as this one by Orison Swett Marden, founder of SUCCESS magazine, but lives by them, as well as others, such as, “When one door closes, another opens.” (Alexander Graham Bell) The qualities of growers and ag industry professionals being opportunistic, self-sufficient and self-reliant is crystal clear when attending the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association “Water Task Force” meeting, or the Potato Expo, a Soil, Water & Nutrient Management meeting or “Redox U,” where specialty plant nutrients and microbial products are discussed. Growers and associated business professionals are self-motivated and proactive. They meet to discuss issues that affect them, construct plans and modes of action to overcome obstacles, and then act on them. Going to Potato Expo, one experiences not only the vibrancy of the potato and vegetable growing industry, but the forward-thinking, technologyembracing, digitally-aware nature of people employed in agriculture. Appropriately grainy, I love the above picture of 12-year-old Taylor Flyte, youngest son of Adam and Carrie Flyte of Flyte Family Farms in Coloma, Wisconsin, as he heads home in a Case International tractor after a day of helping his dad on the farm. This is one of Adam and Carrie’s three industrious children, and it illustrates a can-do attitude inherent to potato and vegetable growers. How refreshing is that in today’s society? In addition to several of the above-mentioned events and meetings being covered in this issue, the “NPC News” column explains how the potato industry has urged the Department of Transportation to extend an agricultural exemption for the Electronic Logging Device rule and how the ag labor crisis and mandatory E-Verify issues are back in focus. There’s never any resting for growers and associates, but there are always representatives and people willing to step up and fight the good fight. Please email me with your thoughts and questions. If you wish to be notified when our free online magazine is available monthly, here is the subscriber link: http://wisconsinpotatoes.com/blog-news/subscribe.
Joe Kertzman Managing Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
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ADAM AND CAROLYN FLYTE, owners,
Flyte Family Farms, LLC
By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater
From Goldrush and Silverton potatoes to hydroponic tomatoes, Flyte Family Farms thrives on diversity. It is a cornucopia of
NAME: Adam Flyte TITLE: Owner COMPANY: Flyte Family Farms, LLC LOCATION: Coloma, WI HOMETOWN: Coloma YEARS IN PRESENT POSITION: 17 years PREVIOUS EMPLOYMENT: n/a SCHOOLING: University of WisconsinPlatteville, agricultural business, and soil and crop science ACTIVITIES/ORGANIZATIONS: 4-H and Immanuel Lutheran Church AWARDS/HONORS: National Corn Growers Award Winner 2010, 2012 and 2014, and Wisconsin State Corn Director 2004-2009 FAMILY: Wife, Carrie, and children, Mikayla “Blueberry Queen”, who’s 16 years old, Tristan “Little Picker”, 15, and Taylor, 12, who loves the farm equipment HOBBIES: Hunting, fishing and downhill skiing
potatoes, tomatoes, field corn and sweet corn, sweet potatoes, soybeans, hay, peas, snap beans, strawberries, blueberries, cucumbers, peppers and even livestock. Adam Flyte is one of three children born to Lee and Cheryl Flyte, who began Flyte Family Farm more than 40 years go. Adam fondly recalls riding with his mom on their Honey Bee Farmall tractor to cultivate, and takes pride in seeing his kids take turns on the same tractor with their grandmother. Lee and Cheryl started their farm near Coloma, Wisconsin, by growing melons and tomatoes, and today, their son, J.R., farms the 150-plusacre family farmstead, providing produce to 15 farm markets in Central Wisconsin. Adam and sister, Jessica, play crucial roles in the success of the vegetable business. Upon graduation from the University of Wisconsin (UW)-Platteville, in 1999, Adam and his wife, Carrie, made plans to diversify and start writing their own chapter in the legacy of the farm.
Carrie and Adam farm 3,100 acres, manage six greenhouses and finish 450 steers annually. They raise nearly 10 acres of strawberries and blueberries, and 750 acres of Goldrush, Silverton, Jelly and Burbank potatoes, of which 100 acres are certified organic. The Flytes also grow small Creamer Potatoes for The Little Potato Company. SHARECROP AGREEMENT Ten years ago, Adam and Carrie entered a sharecrop agreement on 500 acres with Adam’s grandfather. The land had been left fallowed for over three years, which provided them the opportunity to use the acreage to grow organic peas, green beans, sweet corn, seed corn, alfalfa, beans and grains. Above: Adam Flyte is continuing a tradition of growing potatoes that his grandfather began. “I love the challenge of a crop that requires intense management,” Adam says. Shown is a typical harvest set-up.
They sell about half of their produce to local grocery stores and restaurants, with the other half sold at farmer’s markets, including in Madison, Portage and West Bend, Wisconsin. Adam grew up selling produce at roadside stands for his parents, and today, he and Carrie manage six of the Flyte family’s 14 stands. J.R. now works as the farm manager on his parents’ operation. Adam writes the fertilizer programs for their crops and monitors soil samples. He also does customized harvesting on about 2,000 acres for other area farmers. An internship in land hydroponics at Florida’s Epcot Center, while studying horticulture at UWPlatteville, sparked Carrie’s interest in hydroponics. HYDROPONIC TOMATOES She and Adam first teamed up on an independent study project with hydroponic tomatoes on Adam’s parent’s land in the horse pasture. Cherry, cluster and beefsteak varieties of tomatoes thrive in four greenhouses, as well as English cucumbers and peppers. Flyte’s Fieldstones, a division of Flyte Family Farms, LLC, began in 2013, when Adam and Carrie purchased Harlan Buetler’s Century Farm. Yet another working part of the farm, Flyte’s Fieldstones fulfills Adam and Carrie’s dream of promoting agritourism, producing value-added products and hosting “Farm to Table” dinners featuring in-season fresh fruits and vegetables. A marketplace store, Art Corner, and a fall corn maze, hay maze, petting zoo, pumpkin patch, pumpkin launcher and wagon rides all help round out the Flyte’s Fieldstones arm of the business. Flyte Family Farms also features seasonal strawberry, organic blueberry and raspberry picking.
While operating under different umbrellas, the Flytes all share the same passion—homegrown taste, homegrown quality and homegrown pride. Explain the hydroponics aspect of the farm. Hydroponics is a way of growing crops in a soil-less nutrient solution. A benefit is growing crops in a controlled environment where pesticides aren’t always needed. It is also a great way to extend the growing season under plastic.
Above: Adam Flyte (right) poses with his and Carrie’s youngest son, Taylor, in front of a Case IH Magnum 250 row-crop scraper tractor.
Nutrients are spoon-fed to the plants, giving them only what they need to thrive. What were the early days of farming like for you as a kid? I began farming in high school, raising bull calves from the bottle. I then branched out into custom combining and hay. continued on pg. 10
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Interview. . . continued from pg. 9
When I met Carrie, we took independent study courses in college to grow hydroponically. After marrying, we purchased three used hydroponic greenhouses from a grower in Ladysmith and reconstructed them on our property. After growing our first crop of tomatoes and heading to a farmer’s market, we realized that we needed other value-added crops to add to our portfolio for customers. At the time, there weren’t too many
organic blueberry growers in the state, and knowing we had soil that we could amend easily, we planted 1,000 blueberry bushes. Shortly after that, my mom and dad decided to retire from their U-Pick strawberry operation, and my dad, Lee, asked me if I wanted to take it over. I guess I was up for the challenge. How did you transition into growing potatoes? Good question. My grandfather was a potato grower
and I enjoyed helping whenever I had the opportunity. We started with 22 acres in 2008. Our acres increased gradually from 2008 to 2013, and though our total acres haven’t increased in the past five years, we’ve changed the type of potatoes we grow. I loved the challenge of a crop that required intense management. Most of our soils haven’t been in a potato rotation, so this helped our other crops with yields and quality. You also grow vegetables. Can you give me a breakdown of berry, potato/vegetable and other crops, including acreage? Our mix of crops and acres has been a moving target. We try to take advantage of opportunities as they arise. Our most current acres are: organic blueberries, 10 acres; strawberries, 8 acres; organic potatoes, 130; organic sweet potatoes, 60 acres; continued on pg. 12 Above: It was a busy Saturday morning during the “U-pick Strawberries” season on Flyte Family Farms, which also offers organic blueberry and raspberry picking. Left: From left to right, Mikayla, Adam and Taylor Flyte walk a strawberry patch in June.
10 BC�T February
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Interview. . . continued from pg. 10
organic hay, 180; organic seed corn, 160; organic beans, 100; organic carrots, 65; snap beans, 640; seed corn, 420; field corn, 275; hay, 120; soybeans, 200, and potatoes, 610. What is your total working acreage on the farm, and has it grown over the years? Our current total working acres fluctuate from 3,100-3,300. We work with some neighboring growers on our potato rotation, giving us a total land base close to 4,000. We grew steadily from 1999, when we had 375 acres. We haven’t added organic acres in four years, and are focused on irrigation and soil
improvements to get our current land base as productive as possible. How much of your acreage is organic, and why is that significant or important to you? Approximately 25 percent of our working acres are organic. Although these acres require nearly 50 percent of our total management, we’ve had opportunities to grow some highvalue, profitable crops. In 2006, we started farming my grandfather’s land. It was he who had the organic vision. We formulated a plan and continue to grow organic crops to the best of our ability.
Organic production has complemented our farm's labor needs. We have an excellent Spanishspeaking crew that we need to harvest blueberries and strawberries. Basically, from mid-May until early August, our crew is busy planting and harvesting. But there is a lot of downtime during berry harvest, allowing our crew to spend around 17,000 manhours weeding organic acres. Our organic acres are some of the most productive soils we farm. We’ve learned some things that have helped us in our conventional production. It’s such a diverse farm. Why have you decided to go in so many directions? Diversity began on our farm out of necessity. Carrie and I both wanted to be self-employed. Her specialty is in the niche markets, marketing the fresh market crops and administrative work. I enjoy growing crops and the challenges required from start to finish. Diversity keeps us going Top Left: Driver Paul Leibsle takes a minute to pose in front of a Flyte Family Farms tractor-trailer before going on a delivery. Top Right: Potato trucks are lined up and ready for the day at Flyte Family Farms. Left: Having started to raise bull calves when he was 16 years old, Adam Flyte enjoys working with the cattle.
12 BC�T February
in several different directions, but it’s what we know and how we began. Congratulations on landing a contract and growing for The Little Potato Company. What type of potatoes are you growing for The Little Potato Company, and how many acres? Growing for LPC is an excellent opportunity. It brings a new excitement to our production system. We started in 2016 with 90 acres, in 2017 we grew 260 acres, and our plan for 2018 is nearly 450. We grow one red and two yellow Creamer varieties.
transition from growing as many pounds as possible to growing the best possible quality at a much lower yield. We’ve had to change our handling procedures from seed to final delivery at the DeForest facility. Little potatoes require very tight chain pitch for harvest and handling, but also increased need to remove the added soil, cobs, rocks, etc.
Creamers are a short-term crop with intense management and a timely top kill to maximize Creamer yield and quality.
We’ve learned so much in two years, but still have room for improvement to be efficient in handling Creamers. Some of the equipment needed has been a windrower, harvester, sorter, box filler, box topper, and adjustments to planter and conveyors.
Did you have to change some growing methods to meet their specifications? Yes, we’ve had to
Speaking of changes, how has your farm generally changed or progressed over the years?
Left: Adam Flyte checks on the quality of his stored potatoes. Right: Adam and Carrie Flyte grow cherry, cluster and beefsteak varieties of tomatoes using a soil-less nutrient solution in hydroponic greenhouses. A benefit is growing crops in a controlled environment where pesticides aren’t always needed. It is also a great way to extend the growing season under plastic.
As farming has changed, we have changed. Technology has helped us to be more progressive farmers, including irrigation, GPS, etc. What do you feel is the number one area of concentration on the farm? Our number one area of concentration is management. My grandpa always told me, “Surround yourself with good people, and good things will happen.” continued on pg. 14
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Interview. . . continued from pg. 13
Without the help from our farm managers, staff and crew, we would not be the successful farmers we are today. Through wagon rides, corn and hay mazes, your Farm to Table dinners, and strawberry and blueberry picking, the public is welcome on the farm. Why is that important? We really enjoy sharing our passion with our customers and guests who visit our farm. As time goes on, there seems to be a disconnect or gap between the ages, and farming is viewed as a thing of the past. Our aim is to educate and share our reality. Explain the Farm to Table dinners. Farm to Table dinners are prepared in the Flyte Fieldstone Kitchen, and Right: Flyte’s Fieldstones is the agritourism arm of the business, providing value-added products and hosting “Farm to Table” dinners featuring inseason fresh fruits and vegetables.
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meals are served onsite, typically on a farm field edge or in the hay shed, depending on weather. Fresh fruits and vegetables from Flyte Family Farms make up the menu. If they can’t grow it, the food is purchased from other local farmers, including meats and cheese. Farm to Table dinners bring a unique dining experience for guests and really put people in touch with where their food comes from. Is there anything I missed or anything you’d like to add, Adam? In addition to all else, we operate a feedlot where we feed and finish approximately 450 dairy steers annually. We try and do this as “all in and all out,” meaning, November they’re in and August the steer are out. This allows our additional labor to assist with September and October harvest needs. The feedlot has been an excellent source of manure on our organic acres. It also allows us “capture value” on otherwise low-value hay, corn and cull potatoes. Above: Bulk boxes are used for sweet potato harvest on Flyte Family Farms. Right: The Thrivent Financial Team hosted a family weekend at Flyte’s Fieldstones to raise money for those affected by the Didion explosion, in which five people were tragically killed in a Didion Milling Co. corn mill plant explosion in Cambria, Wisconsin, May 2017. Proceeds from the event also went to benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund. A corn maze was cut to spell out “Live Generously” for the event.
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BC�T February 15
Your French Fries May NOT Be So Deadly After All!
Disputing a recent study, sources point out the nutritional value of fried potatoes By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater On June 13, 2017, AARP (the American Association of Retired Persons) released an article titled “Your Fries May Be Deadly,” by Cheryl Bond-Nelms, stating that a recent study links frequent consumption of French fries to a higher mortality risk. Several sources have taken issue with the article and the original study itself, published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The study, which analyzed the dietary habits of 4,400 people, ages 45 to 79, focused on how often participants ate potatoes, fried or not.
Researchers found that people who consumed fried potatoes, specifically hash browns, French fries and tater tots, at least twice a week, could more than double their risk of premature death. The article published by AARP goes on to state, “And the most shocking result was that, by the end of the study, 236 participants had died.” That statement, however, is immediately followed by a quote from Beth Warren, author of Living a Real Life with Real Food, who said, “I don’t think they died from eating
French fries alone, but most likely the habit meant they also indulged in other high-risk eating behaviors.” UNHEALTHY LIFESTYLE Warren continued, “It seems that those people in the study who consumed fried potatoes at least twice per week were more likely to have an overall unhealthy lifestyle.” Jim Schuh of The Portage County Gazette took issue with the article. “I was astounded to read an article from Healthy Living in an AARP email headlined ‘Your Fries May Be Deadly,’” Schuh wrote. “AARP should be ashamed of posting the article. It’s plain that, after reading it, we should be skeptical of things, even if they come from ‘reliable’ sources.” “Around these parts,” Schuh added, Above: Contrary to a limited study published by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, an APRE (Alliance for Potato Research and Education) press release details other research showing that French fries, as part of mixed meals, produce lower blood glucose and insulin levels in children. Getty Image courtesy of Potatoes USA
16 BC�T February
“potato growers are a decent lot and help our economy. They grow a good product. Their product doesn’t deserve being singled out for criticism resulting from questionable research.” Schuh not only questions the link between eating fried potatoes and an increased mortality risk, but also points to a quote in the article that says, “Additional studies in larger sample sizes should be performed to confirm if overall potato consumption is associated with higher mortality risk.” “In other words, the first study’s conclusions are not certain,” he remarks. “AARP should never have published the article since it could damage the potato industry unnecessarily.” FAKE NEWS Adding to what Warren said about participants in the study likely having an overall unhealthy lifestyle to begin
with, Schuh says, “So blaming French fries for premature death alone is ‘fake news,’ to put it in current terminology.”
Left: The Provencal potatoes look good enough to eat, and that’s great because potatoes are an excellent source of potassium and Vitamins C and B6, are a complex carbohydrate, and are themselves fat-free and gluten-free. Photo courtesy of Potatoes USA
The Alliance for Potato Research & Education (APRE, www.apre.org) also took issue with the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study, as well as AARP’s follow-up article.
Right: Research shows that potatoes such as these quick and healthy steakhouse fries can help improve children’s overall diet quality and intake. Photo courtesy of Potatoes USA
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BC�T February 17
Your French Fries May NOT Be So Deadly After All!. . . continued from pg. 17
• The subject pool was relatively small and follow-up was short.
“The attention-grabbing title of this study generated widespread media coverage, including stories that didn’t accurately reflect the study’s conclusions and limitations,” a release by APRE states.
• Food/nutrient intake data was only gathered once and does not account for changing dietary habits.
“Like all epidemiologic research, this study cannot demonstrate cause and effect, and associations identified by any such work must be carefully examined in the context of the study methodology and relative risk results,” APRE explains. “It’s important that people, including scientists, other health professionals and media, dig deeper, looking beyond the headlines to assess the data and its meaning for public health,” APRE says. APRE finds fault with several aspects of the study, particularly: • The study subjects are not reflective of the general population.
• Food intake was captured in isolation, not in context of a dietary pattern or how people truly eat. • The primary outcome variable is all-cause mortality, which is not a sensitive endpoint with which to indict a specific food or diet. • From a statistical perspective, several findings raise questions for concern. The bottom line, concludes APRE’s assessment of the study, is that studies like this are reminders of how difficult it is to conduct high-quality nutrition research. APRE has released scientific articles continued on pg. 20
Above: A study conducted at Texas A&M University demonstrated that pairing entrées with popular vegetables such as white potatoes, served as oven-baked French fries, tater tots (shown here with hash browns) and potato wedges, resulted in the least amount of school meal program plate waste. Photo courtesy of Potatoes USA
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Your French Fries May NOT Be So Deadly After All!. . . continued from pg. 18
regarding potato and French fry consumption. A release titled “Potatoes and Childhood Nutrition” explains that research shows potatoes can help improve children’s overall diet quality and intake.
Examination Survey (NHANES), supported by APRE, suggests that children ages 1 to 3 years old aren’t getting enough vegetables, potassium, dietary fiber and Vitamin D in their diets.
“Advances in nutrition supplement, supported by APRE, explored the state of science on children’s vegetable consumption and reinforced the important nutritive value of vegetables, especially potatoes, for infants and toddlers,” the article states.
White potatoes, NHANES says, are readily accepted nutrient-rich vegetables that offer a good source of potassium and provide 8 percent of the Daily Value for fiber.
“A 2016 study, supported by APRE, found that enjoying mashed potatoes with a meal helps to increase children’s satiety and results in significantly fewer calories being consumed compared to when other carbohydrate dishes are eaten as accompaniments,” APRE asserts. A National Health and Nutrition
Additionally, research supported by APRE shows that removing potatoes from children’s diets can have the unintended consequence of compromising their potassium intake. Potatoes also help promote childhood nutrition as part of school meals. APRE-supported research suggests that schools may be able to reduce plate waste and save money by optimizing entrée and vegetable pairings.
LESS PLATE WASTE A study conducted at Texas A&M University demonstrated that pairing entrées with popular vegetables such as white potatoes, served as ovenbaked French fries, tater tots and potato wedges, resulted in the least amount of plate waste. Another APRE press release shows that French fries, as part of mixed meals, produce lower blood glucose and insulin levels in children. A study lead and co-authored by G. Harvey Anderson, Ph.D., executive director for the Centre for Child Nutrition and Health at the University of Toronto in Ontario, Canada, assessed food intake, calorie intake, blood glucose and insulin levels in normal-weight children 11-13 years old. The children consumed a fixed amount of meat and an unlimited amount of carbohydrate side dishes, either boiled or mashed potatoes, rice, pasta, and either fried or baked French fries. The results of the study show that children consumed fewer calories from meals with boiled and mashed potatoes than with rice, pasta or French fries, and consumed 30-40 percent fewer calories at meals with boiled or mashed potatoes as compared with all other carbohydrates. Consumption of fried French fries resulted in the lowest glucose and insulin at the end of the meal and throughout the 120 minutes following the meal. Contrary to popular believe, the children did not overeat when served fried French fries. The study showed that they did not consume more calories with fried French fries compared with rice, pasta and baked French fries. It’s evident, then, that French fries may not be so deadly after all.
20 BC�T February
Left and Above: WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan (left) arranged for a Spudmobile visit to the home of Jim Schuh (holding plaque) and presented him with an Excellence in Journalism and Outstanding Community Service Award.
WPVGA Commemorates Jim Schuh for Excellence in Journalism For his rebuke of the Healthy Living “Your Fries May Be Deadly” article, as well as his overall support of the statewide ag industry, the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) awarded Jim Schuh an Excellence in Journalism and Outstanding Community Service Award. Tamas Houlihan, Executive Director of the WPVGA, arranged for a Spudmobile visit to Schuh’s home in Plover and presented Jim with the award on January 5.
Schuh held vested interest in the Portage County Gazette and wrote many columns over the years, including informative pieces in support of Central Wisconsin potato and vegetable growers. Schuh is a member of the Wisconsin Broadcasting Museum Hall of Fame, inducted for a 30-plus year as a radio and television announcer and general manager in Milwaukee, Stevens Point, Eau Claire and NeenahOshkosh, and eventually as president and managing partner of WIZD-FM
radio in Plover. He was also a lecturer in the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Communications Department. Most recently, Schuh employed his writing skills to take issue with a misinformed article blaming French fries for deaths of consumers and saying that people who ate fried potatoes twice a week were more likely to have unhealthy lifestyles.
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Potato Expo Celebrates 10 Years in Style A decade of Potato Expo has only made it a more relevant, vibrant, must-see trade show By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater “Coming to Potato Expo allows me to expand my network and my skills and become a better overall potato leader and steward of my business,” says Britt Raybould, Raybould Brothers Farm in Rexburg, Idaho, and vice president of government and
legislative affairs for the National Potato Council (NPC). “Everyone in the industry should take note of this exciting event and do whatever it takes to attend,” she adds.
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“It’s really important for Compass Minerals to be at Potato Expo,” explains Karin Nicolajsen, knowledge transfer and data science lead at Compass Minerals. “We always learn from the growers who are here.”
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Prior to the trade show, Potatoes USA held its Executive, Finance and Research Committee meetings, as well as industry outreach and domestic and international marketing meetings.
Above: Present and accounted for at the Potatoes USA International Marketing Committee Meeting prior to Potato Expo were Eric Schroeder (right) of Schroeder Brothers Farms and a Potatoes USA Administrative Committee member, and Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association Executive Director Tamas Houlihan (center). RIght: Sisters Heidi Alsum-Randall (left), whoâ€™s a member of the Potatoes USA Administrative Committee, and Wendy Dykstra (right), both of Alsum Farms, enjoyed the Potatoes USA domestic marketing meeting.
GLOBAL POTATO OUTLOOK The Potato Business Summit and Luncheon on Wednesday morning, January 10, included a comprehensive analysis of the global and North American potato industry, a retail and foodservice outlook, and economic, farming technology, frozen potato, European and fresh potato outlooks. During the entire trade show in the Gatlin Ballroom, the Innovation Hub stage featured presentations on a plethora of interesting subjects ranging from irrigation technology to precision agriculture. Also covered were soil fumigation, farm data, aerial imagery, improvements in potato seed certification and even the positive health effects of eating potatoes for breakfast and potatoes as nutrition powerhouses. Other topics included biopesticides, managing potato pink rot, improving yield and quality through potassiumbased technology, improved calcium nutrition solutions for potatoes, controlling the Colorado potato beetle and overcoming challenges of storage decay. Keynote speaker Jim Knight, a business culture catalyst, former continued on pg. 24 BCďż˝T February 23
Potato Expo Celebrates 10 Years in Style. . . continued from pg. 23
Hard Rock International executive and author of the book Culture that Rocks!, gave a high-energy presentation on “How to Amp Up or Revolutionize a Company’s Culture,” as only a rock ’n’ roller could. Merril Hoge, former Pittsburgh Steeler and Chicago Bear, an ESPN analyst and cancer survivor, inspired attendees during lunch on Thursday, January 11. Hoge shared his story of prevailing over life’s hurdles, including non-Hodgkins Lymphoma,
24 BC�T February
which he beat through strength and determination. BREAKOUT SESSIONS “Breakout sessions” were another highlight of Thursday afternoon, with everything from blackleg disease and potato variety development discussed, as well as high demand for potato chips at home and abroad, shopping with millennials and the global expansion of potato processing. Networking receptions were a focus, including those for young professionals, women in the potato industry, the Potato Industry Leadership Institute and a research reception.
Left: While Gary Mahany, a potato grower from New York, takes advantage of the putting green at the Potatoes USA booth, Andy Diercks (left) of Coloma Farms, Chris Poole (center) of Spudnik and Zach Mykisen (right) of Big Iron stand back and take in the action. Right: Jeff Sommers (center, gray shirt), general manager of Wysocki Produce Farm, visited the AMVAC booth and representatives during the 2018 Potato Expo. Bottom: A popular attraction at the Ag-Pak booth was an operating Newtec Celox XT optical sorter, complete with potatoes for live demonstration purposes.
The Wisconsin Potato Reception, hosted by the Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association and the WPVGA Chip Committee, capped off a truly eventful Thursday. The NPC held its 2018 Annual Meeting, open to all U.S. growers continued on pg. 26
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Potato Expo Celebrates 10 Years in Style. . . continued from pg. 24
and industry members, as well as an awards banquet, on Friday and Saturday following Potato Expo.
potato industry, which is looking within and toward the future with an optimistic eye and an informed base.
Key NPC issues covered in the Annual Meeting included research funding, U.S. trade policy and agreements, the U.S. Farm Bill, food safety, nutrition, environment, biotech labeling, and immigration, regulatory and tax reform.
The sharing of information is incredible in an industry that has so much to offer and seldom gets the credit it deserves. Potato Expo is a venue for sharing the science, technology and product knowledge gleaned from so many years of research and all corners of the globe.
The trade show floor and adjoining stages and conference rooms never seemed to be without traffic and buzz, and takeaways were many, including a feeling of unity in the
Agriculture truly shined at the 10th Annual Potato Expo in January of 2018.
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Left: Wisconsin potato grower Joe Seis (right, checked shirt) visits Bruce Andersen (suitcoat) at the Bio-Gro booth during the 2018 Potato Expo. Right: Judges were blindfolded while taste testing dishes prepared by chefs during the Spud Nation Throwdown Cook-off, where culinary experts compete by making their best potato dishes. Below: Keynote speaker Merril Hoge, a former NFL star, ESPN analyst and non-Hodgkins Lymphoma cancer survivor, inspired audiences with his story of prevailing over lifeâ€™s hurdles through strength and determination.
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Top Left: Dianna Fricke, director of culinary and a corporate chef for Simplot, hoists the championship belt after “Supermarket Guru” Phil Lempert (behind podium) declares her the winner of the Spud Nation Throwdown Cook-off. Potatoes USA CEO Blair Richardson stands at right.
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Top Right: The FruitGard booth at Potato Expo featured a potato storage demonstration, complete with directional airflow and a vibratory tumbler. Above: Jim Knight, business culture catalyst, former Hard Rock International executive and author of the book Culture that Rocks!, energized the crowd with his rock ’n’ roll spirit and seasoned insights on developing, maintaining and transforming corporate cultures. Below: Eric Schroeder (right), of Schroeder Brothers Farms, was awarded the 2018 Spudman Emerging Leader Award, sponsored by Yara North America. Jimmy Ridgway (left), regional crop manager for Yara, presents Eric with the award at Potato Expo. continued on pg. 28
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Potato Expo Celebrates 10 Years in Style. . . continued from pg. 27
Top Left: As part of the Innovation Hub at Potato Expo, Tommy Roach, director of product development and specialty products for Nachurs Alpine Solutions, gave a presentation on Improving Yield and Quality Through the Use of Potassium-based Technology. Top Right: Dale and Holly Nelson of Nelson’s Vegetable Storage Systems attended the Wisconsin Potato Reception, hosted by the Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association (WSPIA) and the WPVGA Chip Committee. Middle: The Hapka family of HFC, Inc./Hapka Potatoes in Halma, Minnesota, was awarded the 2017 Environmental Stewardship Award at the National Potato Council (NPC) Awards Banquet Friday evening after Potato Expo. Each year, the NPC honors a family farm that has demonstrated a commitment to stewardship of the land and protection of the environment. Accepting the award from NPC President Dwayne Weyers (front row, right) are Leon and Lance Hapka (back row, left and second from left) and their respective wives, Jean and Katrina (back row, right and second from right) and Lance and Katrina’s burgeoning family of four beautiful children. Bottom Right: Wisconsin Professor Emeritus Dr. Walt Stevenson was master of ceremonies at the WSPIA and WPVGA Chip Committee Potato Reception.
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Above: Tom Karst (left) of The Packer and Farm Journal Media presents Melanie Wickham (right), of Empire State Potato Growers, the 2017 Potato Woman for All Seasons Award during the NPC Awards Banquet. Right: Stewart Gray (left), research plant pathologist, USDA-ARS, and from left to right, seated, Amy Charkowski, Chris McIntosh and Neil Gudmestad, university professors, held a breakout session on “Improvements in Potato Seed Certification: Identifying Necessary Changes to Meet the Emerging Challenges of the 21st Century.” Bottom: Matthew Wolter of Riverside Farms in Antigo, Wisconsin, and Cathy Schommer of Compeer Financial were winners of a Wisconsin Certified Seed Potatoes shirt and jacket, respectively, at the WSPIA and WPVGA Chip Committee reception.
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People Dickman Wins Excellence in Agriculture Award Heartland Farms agronomist Lynn Dickman claims top Farm Bureau honor Lynn Dickman was selected the winner of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation’s (WFBF’s) Young Farmer and Agriculturist (YFA) Excellence in Agriculture Award at the organization’s 98th Annual Meeting in Wisconsin Dells on December 3. Dickman is the research agronomist at Heartland Farms, Inc., an 8,000acre potato farm in the Hancock area of Central Wisconsin. The Excellence in Agriculture Award goes to a Farm Bureau member between the ages of 18 and 35 who is actively engaged in agriculture, but does not assume the majority of farm risk. The winner is selected based on their knowledge of agriculture, leadership in Farm Bureau and other civic organizations.
Dickman grew up on a 77-cow dairy farm in Argyle and was active in 4-H and FFA. She earned a bachelor’s degree in dairy science and a master’s degree in horticulture from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. COMMITTEE REP She is the District 5 representative on the WFBF Promotion and Education Committee and the Waushara County Farm Bureau YFA chair. She was a member of the WFBF Leadership Institute Class VIII. Outside of Farm Bureau, she is president of the Tri-County FFA Alumni, and a member of the Stevens Point Curling Club, City Band and a Meals on Wheels board. Dickman will compete at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s
Above: Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation President James Holte (right) presents Lynn Dickman (left), a research agronomist at Heartland Farms, Inc., with the Young Farmer and Agriculturist Excellence in Agriculture Award at the organization's 98th Annual Meeting in Wisconsin Dells.
2018 Annual Convention in Nashville, Tennessee. In addition, Rural Mutual Insurance Company awards Dickman with a free financial plan, and GROWMARK, Inc. invites the winner to be a guest at its annual meeting in August and provides a $250 FAST STOP gift card. continued on pg. 32
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Anthony Spychalla Passes Away Anthony Spychalla, age 62, of Antigo, Wisconsin, died Saturday, December 16, 2017, at his home under the care of his loving family, and following a courageous and well-fought battle against brain cancer. Anthony was born on September 13, 1955, in Antigo, to the late Anthony Carl and Phyllis Marie (Smith) Spychalla.
High School Class of 1974. He enjoyed time with family and friends, time in Fort Myers Beach, Florida, and was an avid golfer and sports fan. FUN-LOVING & DEDICATED He will be remembered as a funloving, dedicated husband, father, grandfather and friend.
Anthony was a lifelong resident of the area and was a local potato grower. He later was employed by Hartland Payment Systems for 10 years.
In addition to his wife, Karen, survivors include a daughter, Noelle (Zack) Washatko, of Antigo; a son, A.J. (Megan) Spychalla, of Rochester, MN; grandchildren, Wyatt, Walker and Brielle Washatko, and Julia and Elizabeth Spychalla; sisters, Vikki Leseburg (Dan Summers), of Summit Lake, WI, and Pam (Mike) Peterson of Westfield, WI; and many nieces, nephews and beloved friends.
Anthony was a graduate of the Antigo
Visitation was held on Tuesday,
He was united in marriage to the love of his life, Karen Ellen Kelm, on October 9, 1976, at St. Mary Catholic Church.
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In lieu of flowers, a memorial was to be established in Anthony’s name. Strasser-Roller Funeral Home is assisting the family. Friends may visit online at www.strasserrollerfh.com.
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December 19, at the St. John Catholic Church Hoffmann Hall. A memorial mass followed with Father Charles Hoffmann officiating.
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Dick Okray Assumes Chairman Role of National Organization The United Potato Growers of America (UPGA) has a new chairman as of the organization’s meeting on January 9, 2018, at the Potato Expo in Orlando, Florida. Dick Okray of Okray Family Farms in Plover, Wisconsin, officially became chairman of the UPGA, and will hold the position for the next two years. Okray took over for the now Outgoing Chairman Jed Ellithorpe of Colorado, who was instrumental in carrying
UPGA through the previous two years, which included bringing in current UPGA CEO and President Mark Klompien after Jerry Wright’s retirement a little over one year ago. Okray brings a wealth of knowledge and ideas to the organization, and was one of several growers who worked to begin the United Potato Growers Cooperative of Wisconsin chapter.
Above: Dick Okray (left), new chairman of the United Potato Growers of America (UPGA), poses, gavel in hand, with now Outgoing Chairman Jed Ellithorpe (right), who was instrumental in carrying the UPGA through the previous two years.
Paul Ellsworth Joins Siddoway, Inc. Thane Siddoway of Siddoway, Inc. proudly announces the hiring of Paul Ellsworth of Rexburg, Idaho. Paul has joined Siddoway, Inc. and Disinfecting Services as a sales and service associate. Paul grew up in Nyssa, Oregon, and has been in Rexburg for the past 18 years. Siddoway, Inc., located in Rexburg, has been selling seed potatoes and providing commercial seed cutting for 31 years.
In the past 23 years, a sister company, Disinfecting Services, has been providing storage disinfecting and applying disinfectants on stored potatoes. Paul will be involved in sales and marketing of the many services provided by the two sister companies. To contact Paul for information on seed potatoes or quotes on disinfecting, phone 208-356-5332 (office) or 208-604-5422 (cell).
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Syngenta Helps Integrate Farm Management Software ADAPT is a translator that allows growers to speak with the rest of the world Ag data from tractors, combines, planters and other farm machinery presents a huge opportunity for growers to manage their operations more efficiently, but only if all the sources of that data can communicate. Syngenta is helping to lead a project aimed at doing just that. The Agricultural Data Application Programming Toolkit (ADAPT) is a project that Ag Gateway, a nonprofit consortium of more than 230 ag
businesses, is spearheading. Syngenta and its wholly owned subsidiary, Ag Connections LLC, are actively engaged members and have played significant roles in the yearslong process of bringing ADAPT to life. Andres Ferreyra, Ph.D., manager of special projects at Ag Connections, has worked as one of the key architects, and Tyler McGee, system architect with Syngenta, is the project manager.
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Additionally, Premier Crop Systems, a precision ag-data processing and analysis company that Syngenta Ventures recently invested in, is contributing to the project. SPEAK WITH REST OF THE WORLD “ADAPT is a translator that allows growers to speak with the rest of the world,” says McGee. “It’s an initiative that fits in well with our commitment to make farming more efficient for the American grower.” Because so much data flows in and out of growers’ farm-management systems today, it can be difficult for them to know what to do with it all, Ferreyra explains. “How could a rainbow cause problems for growers? The answer is when they have equipment that’s green, red, yellow and blue, representing different manufacturers, and none of it speaks the same language,” Ferreyra says. “ADAPT can help them overcome this language barrier.” Growers enrolled in the Syngenta AgriEdge Excelsior® program already have access to ADAPT-compatible farm-management software called Land.db®.
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Above: Syngenta and its wholly owned subsidiary, Ag Connections LLC, are actively engaged in the Ag Gateway project ADAPT (Agricultural Data Application Programming Toolkit).
The software, designed by Ag Connections, allows growers to not only find efficiencies on their own land, but also export complete regulatory reports and share their information with retailers and advisers.
This exchange of information gives growers an advantage in an industry with little room for error. THERE’S NO RE-HARVESTING “You can’t harvest a field again if the data is wrong the first time,” states Mark Stelford, general manager of Premier Crop Systems and chair of the ADAPT Oversight Committee. “People can get upset very quickly, and rightly so, if their systems aren’t
working well together.” ADAPT could be a reality for growers nationwide yet in 2018. Right now, companies are building plug-ins and implementing trial runs to see how the data flows through the system. Although many of the companies that participate in Ag Gateway compete head-to-head in the marketplace, when it comes to ADAPT, they all work together.
“If we collaborate, it will be better for everyone,” Ferreyra says. “Then each company can focus on making its products better, instead of competing with one another on the basic infrastructure we all need.” To learn more about the Syngenta commitment to ADAPT and other research and development projects, go to www.SyngentaThrive.com. Join the conversation online by connecting at social. SyngentaUS.com.
WPVGA Holds Long-Range Planning Meeting Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association charts five-year course Every seat was filled, December 19, 2017, in a conference room at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point for the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) long-range planning meeting. The business at hand involved defining and planning the implementation of five-year goals for all divisions, committees, associations and boards working together under the overall WPVGA umbrella. An invitation was extended to WPVGA board and committee chairpersons, the Wisconsin Potato Industry Board and the Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association Board to attend the final session for completing a long-range plan. Vital issues were discussed that set the course for the Association over the next five years, including goal prioritization and timeline creation. WPVGA President Eric Schroeder called the meeting to order, WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan welcomed members and made introductions, and John Cychosz of The Success Center facilitated the meeting. After a review of vision and mission statements for all WPVGA allied
organizations, five-year plans were reviewed for each of 17 boards, associations and committees, including goals and objectives, strategies and tasks. Attendees left with a solid understanding of the goals and
Above: John Cychosz of The Success Center facilitated the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association long-range planning meeting, December 19, at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point.
missions of the association and all its operating arms. continued on pg. 36
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Now News. . . continued from pg. 35
Reinke Taps Roberts Irrigation as Top 10 Dealership Diamond Reinke Pride award recognizes dedication to agricultural community Reinke has recognized Roberts Irrigation, with locations in Plover and Bloomer, Wisconsin, as one of the top 10 highest-selling dealerships throughout the United States and Canada, acknowledging the company’s marketing year success. Roberts Irrigation was also recognized as the highest-selling dealership in the North Central Territory as well as a top five parts dealer, and the company received a Diamond Reinke
Above: From left to right, Reinke President Chris Roth congratulates Paul Roberts of Roberts Irrigation on winning a Diamond Reinke Pride award as one of the top 10 highest-selling dealerships in the United States and Canada and as a top-five parts dealer, while Barry Graham, Casey Kedrowski, John Herman and Luke Abbrederis of Roberts Irrigation, and Reinke North Central Territory Manager Vern Hinnenkamp stand in support.
the Reinke brand.”
The dealership was honored during Reinke’s annual convention held in Omaha, Nebraska.
Reinke dealerships from across the United States and Canada gather each year to attend the company’s sales convention.
“Congratulations to Roberts Irrigation on receiving this recognition,” says Reinke Vice President of North American Irrigation Sales Mark Mesloh. “We appreciate the dedication that they show to their agricultural community and are happy to have them representing
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The awards ceremony is held in recognition of select Reinke dealerships for their hard work and dedication to sales and marketing throughout the past year. The Reinke Pride awards are determined as part of an incentive program that distinguishes superior achievement levels according to an evaluation based on a dealership’s exterior and interior housekeeping and maintenance, indoor and outdoor displays, safety, retail environment, merchandising, professionalism, promotions and event participation, and market share. continued on pg. 38
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Hemp and Veterans Farm Bills Become Law State Sen. Patrick Testin co-authored and helped get legislation passed By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater, and Allyson Duffy, The Daily Cardinal
December was quite a success for Wisconsin Sen. Patrick Testin (R-Stevens Point), who authored or co-authored nine bills that passed into law during the last month of 2017. Two in particular, The Wisconsin Veterans Farm Bill (AB 302/SB 224) and the Farm Freedom Act—Enabling
Hemp Cultivation (AB 183/SB 119), have the potential to positively affect area growers. A stroke of Gov. Scott Walker’s pen made the Wisconsin Veterans Farm Bill of 2017 law. The bill, authored by Sen. Testin and Rep. Evan Goyke (D-Milwaukee), and co-authored by
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Rep. Ed Brooks (R-Reedsburg) and Sen. Janis Ringhand (D-Evansville), creates a program to recruit military veterans into farming and authorizes the creation of a logotype for veteran farmer products. “Since day one, we’ve made the point that this legislation is proveteran, pro-agriculture and proworkforce,” says Rep. Goyke. “It makes investments in the future of Wisconsin’s agricultural economy, and the futures of our veterans.” “The legislation will accomplish changes in state law to benefit current and future veteran farmers, both rural and urban,” Goyke adds. “I am proud to author it and thank all of the state agencies and stakeholders for their help and support in helping craft this important bill.” The bill’s signing followed unanimous passage through both houses last month. Above: Photo courtesy of Max Bayer Left: Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (seated, center) signs the Veterans Farm Bill (AB 302/SB 224) into law, December 2017.
HELPING VETERANS FIND WORK “This week’s bill signing was the final step in a process that began months ago,” explains Sen. Testin. “Representative Goyke and I developed this idea with individual veterans, veteran groups, agencies and legislators from both parties.” “That idea is a now a law that will help veterans find work and bolster our farming workforce,” Sen. Testin remarks. Wisconsin farmers will now be able to grow industrial hemp after Gov. Walker signed a second bill into law that had previously passed unanimously in both the state Assembly and state Senate. Federal law generally outlaws the growing and possession of cannabis, but states can create programs to research and grow industrial hemp since it is non-psychoactive, as opposed to marijuana. Wisconsin was at one time the
country’s leader in the production of industrial hemp. With the new legislation to reinstate the business, Wisconsin joins over 30 states that have already passed similar legislation allowing hemp cultivation. Hemp will not contain over .3 percent THC—the chemical in marijuana. CREATING JOBS The bill, proposed by state Rep. Jesse Kremer (R-Kewaskum) and Sen. Testin is expected to create new jobs, as well as provide another option for farmers who may have been struggling with the low prices of corn and soybeans. Allowing the production of industrial hemp will also stimulate Wisconsin’s organic market since industrial hemp is very popular in that market and could also lead to positive environmental impacts, lawmakers say. Agriculture experts are also optimistic about reintroducing hemp in the state.
Let’s get it straight.
“Hemp is a good alternative crop. Why couldn’t we be the world’s largest hemp producer? I think it could be something that would really help Wisconsin if we have the right infrastructure to implement it,” says Paul Mitchell, an associate professor of agriculture and applied economics at the University of WisconsinMadison. “It would leave a better carbon footprint than some other crops,” Mitchell adds. The number of farms growing hemp for profit will explode by 2020, according to Rob Richard, senior director of government relations for Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation. Hemp seed producer Ken Anderson told the Wisconsin State Journal that there are already U.S. processors planning on opening a processing facility in Wisconsin to prepare for the 2018 harvest of hemp.
continued on pg. 40
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Now News. . . continued from pg. 39
Soil, Water & Nutrient Management Meetings Held University of Wisconsin-Madison Extension and DATCP give presentations The Department of Soil Science, in conjunction with the University of Wisconsin Extension, conducted eight Soil, Water and Nutrient Management meetings in various locations throughout the state, November 29 to December 5, 2017.
The purpose of the meetings was to provide research and information updates on soil, water and nutrient management, with a uniform fee of $35 including a meal, all materials and the opportunity to earn Certified Crop Advisor CEU credits.
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Matt Ruark, Brian Luck and Francisco Arriaga (University of WisconsinMadison) and Susan Porter of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection gave presentations. Topics included Building Soil Organic Matter, Principles of Nitrogen Use Efficiency and a Cover Crop Research Update (Ruark); Machinery Movement for Efficient Forage Harvest and Maintaining Soil Health (Luck); The Value of Crop Residue and Cover Crop Survey Results (Arriaga); and a Wisconsin Nutrient Management Update (Porter). Left: Biological Systems Engineer Brian Luck presents past study findings and poses hypothetical questions on agricultural truck/ transport utilization and productivity as part of his presentation on “Keys to Efficient Forage Harvest and Potential for Controlled Traffic.” Right: Matt Ruark of the University of Wisconsin Department of Soil Science discusses nitrogen use efficiency, soil organic matter and cover crops during a Soil, Water and Nutrient Management meeting, December 5, at The Main Event in Cecil, Wisconsin.
Farmers Business Network Releases Seed Genetics Survey How often does the same seed appear in more than one company’s branded bag? Originally published by and reprinted with permission of Sonja Begemann, Farm Journal’s AgPro
It’s no secret that farmers have long wanted to know just how often the same seed reappears in more than one bag. One California-based data company says they’ve cracked the code.
Above: Shown are neonicotinoid seed treatments.
“What we’ve found is that the majority of seed companies (71 percent in corn, 79 percent in soybeans) market varieties that are also sold by other brands,” says Charles Baron, co-founder of Farmers Business Network (FBN). “Ninety-five percent of our farmermembers bought from one of these companies and 63 percent planted relabeled seed [seed available in other brands],” Baron adds.
FBN’s study gathered about 7,500 seed tags that represented 110 seed companies and 2,550 unique seeds on the market. The company requested this information by
sending an email to farmers asking them to send in seed tags so FBN could then learn the brand and variety number information. FBN claims 38 percent of corn and 45 percent of soybeans tested were sold by more than one seed brand—about $2.5 billion of the U.S. seed market. “The implications for farmers are continued on pg. 42
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continued from pg. 41
vast. First, many are overpaying for genetics since the same variety can be available by as many as 12 other brands with totally different pricing,” Baron notes. “Second, the genetic diversity of the crop is much lower than assumed. And third, the potential for accidental genetic duplication and concentration is high, affecting disease resistance issues,” he concludes. It’s not just small seed companies with shared genetics. FBN says nearly every multinational brand has some, too (see charts). SEED TAG SUBMISSION Farmers who want to access this information, and the new Seed Finder system that finds any variety’s crossmatches, would need to join FBN for $600 per year and submit at least one seed tag.
Companies with Shared Corn Seed Genetics SOURCE: FARMERS BUSINESS NETWORK
80% 75% 68%
Seed Piece. . .
40% 31% 20%
il ent uPont nsanto end D p e Mo Ind
*Data from Farmers Business Network, and chart designed by Lindsey Benne.
FBN says they want farmers to use this information to help empower their decisions. “We found identical corn seeds available for $97 per bag
less in the same state in different brands,” Baron says. “That’s $40 per acre; everyone needs to check their seeds before they buy.”
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“The development of corn in-breeds and soybean varieties has become so expensive and complex that very few companies develop their own germplasm today,” says Chuck Lee, Syngenta head of seeds product marketing. “For the most part, in corn, there are only four companies that spend the money necessary to develop genetic material—hundreds of millions of dollars. There’s even fewer in soybeans, really only three,” Lee explains. Licensing means genetics reach a larger area. “For Dow AgroSciences seed companies, there is some overlap in genetics,” says a companyprepared statement. “Each company brings a unique portfolio of products that is locally tested and specifically
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Companies with Shared Soybean Genetics SOURCE: FARMERS BUSINESS NETWORK
Seed companies say sharing variety numbers is good for farmers, and the biggest reason farmers see shared genetics is because of licensing.
20% 16% 0%
Dow gRelian A
il o ent uPont nta sant end nge D y p e S Mon Ind
*Data from Farmers Business Network, and chart designed by Lindsey Benne.
selected to meet the needs of farmers in their own geographies.” “While there are some shared genetics among these brands
[PROaccess], each company serves growers with a unique portfolio of products that is tested and selected
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Seed Piece. . . continued from pg. 43
to meet the needs of customers in their local geography and market segments,” says Jeff Burnison, senior marketing manager, PROaccess genetics.
We label all soybeans at 94 percent germination, for example, because of the care we show that seed,” says Carl Peterson, founder of Peterson Farm Seeds in North Dakota.
Licensing provides opportunities for smaller brands to access the latest genetics. “We choose to broadly license our traits and genetics whenever possible so that farmers can purchase them in the brands they wish,” says Jeff Neu, Monsanto product communications lead.
“To say that there are the same genetics, or close to the same is one thing, but that doesn’t mean they’re the same product,” Peterson notes.
COMPANIES DIFFERENTIATE Each company has the opportunity to differentiate. Seed conditioning, growing conditions, seed treatment, germination rates and other handling factors come into play to differentiate the quality of seed you buy. “My wife, Julie, and I started our seed company 22 years ago and we take great pride in the quality of our seed.
Eliminating overlapping genetics could have drawbacks. “Licensing is key to choice and diversity,” says Andy LaVigne, CEO and president of the American Seed Trade Association. “Look at Canada where only one provider can sell a variety—it reduces choice and competition.” In Canada, farmers know they’re getting the best price, but there are fewer companies on the market. “Freedom to choose their buying experience is how we ensure farmers
do what’s best for their operations,” says Mark Herrman, AgReliant Genetics president and CEO. If the United States took an approach like Canada, farmers would see a drastically different seed-buying landscape. “Licensing is the lifeblood of independent seed companies and a driver of competition,” says Todd Martin, CEO of the Independent Professional Seed Association. “Without licensing, independents and competition languish and farmers see higher prices. Seed companies support genetic licensing. “What FBN is trying to spin as a questionable thing is actually a great thing for growers,” Lee says. “I would say if we don’t license, or ‘relabel’ as FBN says, the industry will be down to three seed companies.”
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Spud seed classic
Friday, June 22, 2018 Bass Lake Country Club W10650 Bass Lake Road Deerbrook, WI 54424
WSPIA Golf Outing
Deadline for sponsorship commitments to be included in June Badger Common'Tater: May 10, 2018* DINNER SPONSOR $2,000
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• Company name and logo on three 12-foot banners placed in prominent areas including dinner area • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal Recognition and name on sign at event • Registration and dinner for four golfers
• Company Name and logo on one 8-foot banner placed in a prominent area on the course • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal recognition and name on sign at event
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• Company Name and logo on two 12-foot banners placed in a prominent area on the course • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal recognition and name on sign at event • Registration and dinner for two golfers
SILVERTON SPONSOR $1,000 Bushman's Riverside Ranch • Company name and logo on one 12-foot banner placed in a prominent area on the course • Company name and logo in Badger Common'Tater • Verbal Recognition and name on sign at event • Registration and dinner for one golfer CONTACT DANIELLE SORANO for more details (715) 623-7683 Make checks payable to WSPIA *
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Since 1998, this tournament raised over $85,000, which was donated to Wisconsin potato research. BC�T February 45
How the New Tax Bill Affects Potato Farmers A certified public accountant pinpoints provisions that are of potential interest to growers By Paul Neiffer, certified public accountant, principal, agribusiness, CliftonLarsonAllen LLP There are many provisions in the new tax bill that will affect potato farmers. Many of them will reduce income, but not all. For farmers operating as a corporation, the primary advantage is the reduction in the top corporate tax rate to a flat 21 percent rate, or a 40 percent reduction. However, many farmers who operated as corporations had limited their taxable income to $50,000 to take advantage of the low 15 percent
bracket for this income. This results in an actual 40 percent tax increase. For example, assume that a farm partnership had four equal corporate partners, and the partnership had a taxable income of $200,000, which was reported equally by each partner. This resulted in $30,000 of tax under the old law, whereas the new law would impose $42,000 of tax, or a 40 percent increase. For all other farmers, there is a new
Section 199A deduction. The old Section 199 DPAD 9 percent deduction has been eliminated effective beginning in 2018 for all farmers. To maintain a balance between corporate farmers with a new low 21 percent rate and flow-through taxpayers, Congress put in place the new Section 199A deduction. BASED ON NET FARM INCOME Farmers who do not sell to a cooperative can take a 20 percent deduction based on their net farm income. There continues to be a limit based upon wages and/or qualified property (assuming income is above $415,000 for married couples and $207,500 for other taxpayers). Finally, this deduction is then limited to 20 percent of taxable income less net capital gains, less cooperative payments. Above: For farmers operating as a corporation, the primary advantage is the reduction in the top corporate tax rate to a flat 21 percent rate, or a 40 percent reduction. Heartland Farms is pictured from above. Left: New farm equipment can now be depreciated over five years instead of seven years, however used farm equipment continues with the seven-year life. A planter is loaded with cut seed potatoes at Alsum Farms & Produce, Inc.
46 BCďż˝T February
Let’s look at an example: ABC Spuds has net farm income of $1 million and wages paid of $350,000. The owner has taxable income of $500,000. The gross deduction is $200,000, the first limit is $175,000 ($350,000 times [x] 50 percent) and the final limit is $100,000 ($500,000 x 20 percent). This reduces the taxable income to $400,000. A farmer who markets his or her crops to a cooperative potentially receives a much greater deduction. In this case, the farmer can deduct 20 percent of all payments received from the cooperative, including potato sales (in most cases). The only limit on this deduction is taxable income less net capital gains. Let’s take our example above. Assume potato sales of $5 million. In this case, the deduction is $1 million, and the only limit is $500,000 (taxable income), reducing taxable income to zero.
SECTION 179 INCREASED Section 179 has been increased to $1 million beginning in 2018 and the phase-out now starts at $2.5 million. One hundred percent bonus depreciation now applies to all farm assets, including used equipment for purchases between September 28, 2017 and December 31, 2022.
Above: Farmers can depreciate their assets with less than a 15-year life using the faster 200db (declining balance) method instead of the old 150db method. Potatoes are dug at Coloma Farms, Inc.
Bonus depreciation is phased down by 20 percent each year beginning in 2023, and will be zero in 2027 (unless Congress extends it). continued on pg. 48
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How the New Tax Bill Affects Potato Farmers. . . continued from pg. 47
Business interest may be limited if your gross sales are greater than $25 million. In that case, you can only deduct interest up to 30 percent of adjusted income (net income plus interest, plus taxes, plus depreciation, plus amortization, minus EBITDA [Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization]) through 2022. After that year, you can only deduct 30 percent based on EBIT. A farmer can elect to deduct 100 percent of business interest. The offset is that the farmer must use ADS (Alternative Depreciation System) depreciation on all assets with a recovery life of 10 years or longer, and can’t take bonus depreciation on these assets. Since most potato operations have asset recovery lives of less than 10 years, this may be a good election if your gross revenues are over $25 million. EQUIPMENT DEPRECIATION New farm equipment can now be depreciated over five years instead of seven years, however used farm equipment continues with the
seven-year life. Also, farmers can depreciate their assets with less than a 15-year life using the faster 200db (declining balance) method instead of the old 150db method. If a farm shows a loss, there is now a new limit on how much that can be deducted.
Net farm losses can be carried back two years and have an unlimited carryforward. However, net operating losses can only offset 80 percent of taxable income.
All business income and losses are added together, and if a net loss exceeds $500,000, the excess is not allowed and will be carried forward as a net operating loss.
Meals provided by a farm operation on the business premises can now only be deducted at a 50 percent rate, and after 2025, there is no deduction for these meals.
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Above: A farmer who markets his or her crops to a cooperative potentially receives a much greater deduction under the new tax bill. A truckload of potatoes is shown at Sterling Farms, LLC, with worker Stanley Stubbe standing at far right.
PARAGON FARMS, LLC BANCROFT, WI
Finally, the lifetime exemption amount for estate/gift tax purposes has been doubled effective between 2018 and 2025. It then reverts to current amounts after that date. Farmers with larger estates should look at making major gifts in the next few years to take advantage of this provision. There are many other provisions contained in the new tax law, but these are likely the ones most applicable to the majority of potato operations. This analysis is based on a reading of the new tax code, and when the Internal Revenue Service issues regulations on it, the analysis may change.
Using NDVI for Nitrogen Management in Potato Handheld sensors prove useful in predicting yield and stress, and adjusting nitrogen applications By Matt Ruark, UW-Madison Department of Soil Science
Non-destructive sensing of biomass (sometimes called proximal sensing) is a highly desired tool for agricultural management. For example, not only would sensing the nitrogen (N) content of aboveground plant biomass rather than physically sampling it save time, it would also provide information instantaneously rather than having to wait on lab results. (ReflectanceNIR + ReflectanceRed). One particular sensing measurement that has shown value in N management is the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). NDVI can be measured through several sensing devices now available as hand-held devices. The sensor measures reflectance at two parts of the electromagnetic
spectrum, near infrared (NIR) and visible red. Chlorophyll absorbs red light, and thus less reflectance means greater greenness (chlorophyll activity). Specific and singular NIR and visible red wavelengths are typically used, and NDVI is calculated as: (ReflectanceNIR – ReflectanceRed) /
The use of active sensors has been shown to be beneficial in adjusting inseason N applications for grain crops, but little work has been done with potato. The use of NDVI (and other sensing measurements) has the potential continued on pg. 50
Baginski Farms Inc. Yellows:
Jelly Malou Soraya
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I wouldn’t expect there to be any relationship between NDVI and petiole nitrate as this typically reflec pumping into the leaves, and the plant tissue doesn’t make up a big part of the canopy that the handh measures.
Badger Beat. . .
continued from pg. 49
USE OF A HANDHELD SENSOR A handheld sensor that calculates NDVI was employed on Goldrush potatoes in the 2015 and 2016 growing seasons. NDVI was measured several times during the growing season at times of leaflet N and petiole nitrate measurements.
to predict yield and identify plant stress (water, nutrient, insect or disease). The focus of my current research is to evaluate its potential to identify nitrogen stress and its potential to replace plant tissue testing in potato.
30 lb-N/ac (478 cwt/ac) 150 lb-N/ac (561 cwt/ac) 225 lb-N/ac (590 cwt/ac)
Days after emergence The relationship between NDVI measurements and yield was subtle, but potentially meaningful. In 2015, Figure 1. NDVI measurements on Goldrush in 2015 at three different N rates at 44 and 62 days after e Figure 1: NDVI measurements on Goldrush in 2015 The trends in NDVI reflected the NDVI was measured twice, at 44 at three different N rates at 44 and 62 days after trends in yield, with greater yielding and 62 days after emergence (DAE) emergence. treatments having greater NDVI. In (Figure 1). There was no difference in 2016, NDVI measurements were NDVI at 44 DAE among N rates, but receiving 30, 150 or 225 lbs.-N/acre (Figure 2). similar at 48 DAE among plots there was at 62 DAE.
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At 60 DAE, the plots receiving only 30 lbs.-N/acre had noticeably lower NDVI and by 75 DAE, the plots with 150 lbs.-N/acre had a lower NDVI compared to plots with 225 lbs.-N/ acre. This slight difference in NDVI reflected a small but meaningful yield gain of 16 cwt. (hundredweight)/ac.
NDVI did not correlate well with petiole nitrate-N concentration or leaflet N concentration. For example, in 2016 at 75 DAE, the R2 between NDVI and petiole nitrate was .09 1.0003) and the R2 between NDVI (Figure and0.900 leaflet N was 0.02 (Figure 4).
0.600 0.500 0.400
30 lb-N/ac (480 cwt/ac)
150 lb-N/ac (515 cwt/ac)
255 lb-N/ac (531 cwt/ac)
Petiole nitrate-N (%)
48 60 75 This0.800 is interesting as I would have Days after emergence 0.700 the relationship between expected NDVI and leaflet N to be much 0.600 Figure 2. NDVI measurements on Goldrush in 2016 at three different N rates 48, 60 and 75 days afte stronger 0.500 as it is a measure of the leaf Figure 2: NDVI measurements on Goldrush in 2016 develop a meaningful relationship greenness. at three different N rates 48, 60 and 75 days after 0.400 30 lb-N/ac (480 cwt/ac) between NDVI and yield potential, emergence. I wouldn’t to be any but2.50 there does seem to be some 0.300 expect there 150 lb-N/ac (515 cwt/ac) relationship between NDVI and promise in using NDVI to predict yield to occur. 0.200 petiole nitrate as this typically reflects 255 lb-N/ac (531 cwt/ac) potential in potato. 2.00 the 0.100 nitrate pumping into the leaves, The use of sensors will be a major The use of NDVI for this purpose 0.000 and the plant tissue doesn’t make thrust of agricultural research in the will1.50 likely occur with 75 later season up a big part of the48canopy that the 60 next decade, but it is field-based data measurements. However, the use of handheld sensor measures. Days after emergence such as this that will be needed to NDVI as a replacement measure for 1.00 petiole nitrate or48, leaflet notafter likely Certainly, more work on is needed to2016 at three guide its use. Figure 2. NDVI measurements Goldrush in different N rates 60 andN 75isdays emergence. 0.50 6
0.2 Leaflet N (%)
Petiole nitrate-N (%)
3 NDVI and petiole nitrate-N concentration in 2016 across all plots at 7 Figure 3. Relationship between emergence.
2 1 0
Figure 3. Relationship petiolenitrate-N nitrate-Nconcentration concentration in 2016 across plots at 75between days afterNDVI Figure 4. all Relationship andleaflet-N leaflet-Nconcentration concentration in 2016 across Figure 3: Relationshipbetween betweenNDVI NDVI and and petiole in 2016 Figure 4: Relationship between NDVI and in 2016 across all all plots emergence. across all plots at 75 days after emergence. plots at 75 days after emergence.
Certainly, more work is needed to develop a meaningful relationship between NDVI and seem to be some promise in using NDVI to predict yield potential in potato.
The use of NDVI for this purpose will likely occur with later season measurements. Howe replacement measure for petiole nitrate or leaflet N is not likely to occur. The use of sensors will be a major thrust of agricultural research in the next decade, but that will be needed to guide its use. BC�T February 51
By Dana Rady, WPVGA Director of Promotions & Consumer Education
Wisconsin Potatoes the Focus of UTV Giveaway Wisconsin potatoes received a lot of attention this year at Trig’s in Rhinelander during its extensive Wisconsin Potatopalooza month promotion. Trig’s displays throughout every grocery department resulted in the store taking first place in the Wisconsin Potatoes Display Contest for the second consecutive year.
Wednesday, December 20, was no exception to giving Wisconsin potatoes their due during the giveaway event, at which the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) Promotions Committee presented Trig’s in Rhinelander with a 2016 Cub Cadet UTV (utility terrain vehicle). Promotions committee members also presented Don Theisen, store manager of Trig’s in Rhinelander, with a plaque commemorating the store’s 2016 win as well as the
team’s efforts in 2017. BUY LOCAL, BUY WISCONSIN Trig’s in Rhinelander has mastered the art of communicating the “Buy Local Buy Wisconsin” message, and effectively educating its consumers by including a Wisconsin potato promotion in every one
Top: WPVGA Promotions Committee members join the Trig’s team and members of Potato King, the store’s potato supplier, in presenting the store with a 2016 Cub Cadet UTV at the giveaway event, December 20, in Rhinelander. Pictured left to right are: Mark Finnessy, Okray Family Farms in Plover and WPVGA Promotions Committee member; WPVGA Promotions Director Dana Rady; Chris Brooks, owner of Central Door Solutions in Plover and promotions committee chairman; Don Theisen, Trig’s in Rhinelander store manager; Don’s wife, Carrie; Casey Kedrowski of Roberts Irrigation in Plover and promotions committee member; Michael Gatz of Bushmans’ Inc. in Rosholt and promotions committee member; Dewey Poeschel, Potato King produce specialist; Bill Oelrich, produce manager for Trig’s in Rhinelander; Scott Herlitzke, president of Potato King; and Brad Brayshaw, Trig’s director of produce. Right: Manager of Tula’s Café in the Rhinelander Trig’s mall, Heather Debroux created this potato bouquet for the December 20 giveaway event. The bouquet housed an exact replica of the 2016 Cub Cadet UTV the store won as a first-place prize during the 2017 Wisconsin Potatoes Display Contest. Left: Heather Debroux, manager of Tula’s Café in the Rhinelander Trig’s mall, prepared all the food for the group’s lunch dishes, each of which featured Wisconsin potatoes. Debroux also created potato flowers to decorate the café tables for the giveaway event on December 20. 52 BC�T February
of its departments. This is what pushed the team into first-place status for the second year in a row, and, for the promotions committee, the deciding factor in recognizing Trig’s with a Cub Cadet UTV. Media outlets recognized the efforts as well, noting that potato sales
at Trig’s in Rhinelander increased 400 percent during the Wisconsin Potatoes Display Contest. The time, effort and creativity Trig’s put into showcasing the great things Wisconsin potato growers do is a true example that the WPVGA wants other independent retail stores to share with their customers, supporting local economies along the way.
Left: Don Theisen, store manager of Trig’s in Rhinelander, hands out homemade cookies in the shape of Wisconsin to customers, December 20, during the UTV (utility terrain vehicle) giveaway event. The cookies were complete with an edible Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association logo on the top. Right: WPVGA Promotions Committee Chairman Chris Brooks (left) presents a plaque to Don Theisen (right), store manager of Trig’s in Rhinelander, at the giveaway event on December 20. The plaque commemorates Trig’s win in 2016, as well as the team’s efforts in 2017.
WPIB Focus Wisconsin Potato Assessment Collections: Two-Year Comparison Month
BC�T February 53
New Products Real Time Recorders Track In-Transit Produce Units provide online access to temperature, location and door status of perishable shipments Lightning Real Time temperature recorders provide online access to current temperature, location and door status while perishable shipments are in-transit. This “set it and forget it” level of automation provides all the documentation required for compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) Final Rule for sanitary transportation of human and animal food products. If desired, Lightning Real Time instruments can be pre-configured to issue Short Message Service (SMS)/ email alerts when a truck/trailer temperature breaches its intended range.
Unlike competing systems, Lightning Real Time is also designed to provide the inspector or receiver with a complete temperature chart at the trailer door. Lightning Real Time temperature charts can be viewed immediately upon arrival. TEMPERATURE RECORD The inspector simply holds Lightning Real Time back-to-back with an ordinary Android smartphone or tablet to review the temperature record. Using the Lightning App, an inspector or receiver can document arrival quality attributes, add photographs and even log accept/ reject determinations. All temperature, location, arrival quality attribute data and
photographs are immediately archived online for easy access. FSMA “Sanitary Transportation Final Rule” compliance has never been easier! Lightning Real Time is available in 5-, 10- and 20-day run times. Since Lightning Real Time instruments are preconfigured for your specific application, they must be ordered via telephone. Call Cargo Data Corporation toll free in the USA at 800-338-8134, or from non-USA phones, dial 805-650-5922 to order your Lightning NFC Real Time instruments.
GLK Foods Extends OH SNAP! Product Line “Pretty Peas” join the company’s lineup of single-serving pickled veggies GLK Foods is pleased to announce the newest pickled veggie available under the company’s OH SNAP!® brand— Pretty Peas. These single-serve pickled snap peas are gluten-free, fat-free and made with non-GMO snap peas. Pretty Peas are fresh-packed with no added brine, an innovative process that delivers superior crunch, great taste and less mess! Pretty Peas is the latest addition to the OH SNAP! product line that includes two other pickled veggies— Cool Beans and Carrot Cuties—along with four varieties of fresh-packed, single-serve pickles. All seven delicious, single-serve items 54 BC�T February
in the OH SNAP! product line are packaged for ultimate convenience with no added brine, creating a whole new category for pickled snacking veggies. OH SNAP! pickles and pickled veggies are not only the best pickle and pickled veggie pouch product on the market, they are also competitively priced. For more information, visit the OH SNAP! press center at www.ohsnappickles.com, or contact Ashley Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org. About GLK Foods GLK Foods is a 4th-generation, family-owned company. For over 100 years, the company has
been making the finest quality sauerkraut, growing to become the largest kraut producer in the world. Making some of America’s top-selling brands, GLK Foods continues to be the leader in food product innovation and is committed to giving consumers choice, convenience and quality in all their products. For more information, visit glkfoods.com.
Potato Industry Urges Extension of ELD Ag Exemption Letter explains the supply disruptions occurring in the trucking industry The potato industry sent a letter, dated January 19, 2018, to the Department of Transportation urging them to reconsider certain portions of the Electronic Logging Device (ELD) rule and to extend its temporary agricultural exemption for an additional nine months. The letter, signed by the National Potato Council (NPC), the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association and a dozen other state potato organizations, outlined the supply disruptions that are occurring in the trucking industry and urged the federal government to avoid any
further contribution to the crisis. “Clearly there are issues with potato producers’ ability to access an adequate supply of trucks. We strongly believe that the DOT needs to understand the degree to which the ELD rule is contributing to those disruptions and avoid exacerbating them via federal regulation,” says NPC CEO John Keeling. As a remedial action, the letter urges the Department of Transportation to extend the current ELD exemption for truckers hauling agricultural commodities until December 2018. That exemption is currently due to
Ag Labor Crises and Mandatory E-Verify Back in Focus During discussions in January about solving the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) issue, there have also been active negotiations regarding the inclusion of a bill to solve the growing ag labor crisis. Those negotiations helped ensnare the efforts to fund the government and avoid a shutdown. The discussions involved including some version of the guest worker bill (HR 4092 “the Ag Act”) that was reported out of the House Judiciary Committee last fall. At that time, NPC and the rest of the coalition representing U.S. agriculture (the Ag Workforce Coalition) thanked House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) for
starting the immigration reform process by moving that bill through a very difficult committee with some needed reforms. However, all sides acknowledged that it doesn’t provide the necessary solution for agriculture in its current form and must be improved in fundamental areas. Complicating the negotiations, there have also been efforts to require Mandatory E-Verify for all U.S. workers as a trade-off for solving DACA. NEGATIVE ECONOMIC IMPACT Without a viable program for agriculture, requiring Mandatory E-Verify would cost billions of dollars
Above: Truck driver Kenny Baldwin (left) stands next to Bill Wysocki (right) of RPE, Inc. and Wysocki Family of Companies. The newly implemented Electronic Logging Device (ELD) rule negatively affects supply deliveries and puts a burden on drivers and potato producers.
last only three months and expires on March 18. The potato industry also identified certain deficiencies in the rule and urged DOT to extend the current comment period on various definitions so that they can more fully understand the regulatory disconnect. in negative economic impact to the agriculture industry and large price increases for consumers. “Mandatory E-Verify outright, or with some kind of agriculture exemption, would be extremely destructive for the industry and consumers,” says Kam Quarles, NPC vice president of public policy. “Any thought of imposing that government mandate has to be preceded by the implementation of a program that allows farmers to secure the labor they need, when they need it,” Quarles adds. At press time, the status of the immigration provisions was unclear. NPC is urging members to remain vigilant in any conversations with their representatives that Mandatory E-Verify cannot move forward without a workable solution that the agriculture industry has agreed upon. BC�T February 55
HELD AT HINTERLAND BREWERY
Company reps dissect and discuss their specialty plant nutrients and microbial products If you’re going to bring suppliers together in one location and introduce their products to growers and the ag industry, you might as well choose a comfortable setting with good food, a view of Lambeau Field and possibly offer a microbrew later in the day when the presentations are complete.
A collaboration between T.I.P.’s AgGrow Solutions, Redox, AgroLiquid and Bio S.I., the seminar attracted dozens of industry players interested in discussing issues facing potato, fruit and vegetable growers, as well as the entire ag industry, and going over first-hand results achieved by local farmers.
That’s just what Steve Tatro of T.I.P. (Tatro Irrigation & Potato) did in hosting the 2nd Annual Redox U at the Hinterland Brewery in Green Bay, Wisconsin, December 12.
Presenters included Eric Massey and Richard Evans, senior agronomists for Redox, a specialty nutrient company. Redox incorporates 11 distinct types of soluble carbon chemistries with
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plant nutrients to improve plant uptake, input efficiency and results. Massey talked about the chemistry of plant nutrients, soil, leeching and water uptake and runoff. He discussed the roles calcium and magnesium play in soil and plant health, as well as nitrogen, phosphorus, zinc, and bound and protected compounds. Massey explained that growers ultimately want to convert nitrogen into protein via carbohydrates formed from sunlight and oxygen. Specifically, he mentioned Redox’s product, Supreme, as aiding in converting nitrogen, setting more tubers and achieving size uniformity. Other Redox products include PeneCal, which is high in surfactant and calcium; Mainstay Calcium; Mainstay SI, a reacted plant nutrient high in calcium and silicon; and Mainstay SI diKaP, which, among other things, helps plants survive heat and stress.
STIMULATE ROOT GROWTH Rootex is a reacted plant nutrient high in phosphorus and L-amino acids to stimulate root growth; P-58 is high in phosphorus; H-85 is a folic acid with a soluble carbon complex that increases microbial activity; and Oxycom Calcium contains calcium, potassium, phosphate, oxygen and proprietary carbon compounds to stimulate plant growth and
produce antioxidants. All products, Massey stressed, aid good soil chemistry and microbiology, and thus healthy root growth. Wayne Tucker, vice president of sales and marketing for Bio S.I. Technology, LLC, and Doug Traxel, national sales manager, explained the company’s method of growing soil-borne microbes in digestors, concentrating
Above: Redox senior agronomists Richard Evans (gray shirt) and Eric Massey (vest) discuss the company’s soluble carbon chemistries and plant nutrients during the 2nd Annual Redox University at Hinterland Brewery in Green Bay, Wisconsin.
them and having every batch tested so they’re not spreading pathogens. Bio S.I. works with native microbes that live in the soil and grows them continued on pg. 58
BC�T February 57
2nd Annual “Redox U”. . . continued from pg. 57
for about a year before reintroducing them back into the soil. “Good microbes outcompete bad ones for food sources,” Tucker explains. Bio S.I. has developed a three-step program that works to reduce disease pressure by improving plant vigor, root zone size and a plant’s ability to attract more microbial diversity to the root zone. Microbes also work to free tied-up nutrients from soil particles, improve soil tilth and breakdown plant debris. Bio S.I. Ag Formula is broadcast over the soil surface pre-planting to distribute a broad spectrum of microbes over the entire field, and should be applied two to three weeks prior to planting. Ag Select from Bio S.I. is applied directly over seed in-furrow, and contains microbes plus beneficial mycorrhizae fungi in the solution.
The microbes work to protect the root from pathogens when the seed opens.
Above: Andy Derhassett, an agronomist with T.I.P.’s AgroSolutions, answers grower questions during the 2nd Annual Redox U at the Hinterland Brewery in Green Bay.
SD 25 is used post-harvest to digest plant debris, a way of recycling nutrients that have already been paid for once, and returning the debris to the soil to build the nutrient, carbon and humus banks.
THE HUMUS FACTOR Humus increases the water-holding capacity of soil. With 1 percent humus in the soil, an inch of rain will wipe out the soil and most nutrients,
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but with 1.5 percent humus, the soil will lose very little of a 3-inch rain or the nutrients and microbes within the soil. It takes, Tucker explains, 1 million microbes to control one fungus. Giving nature a helping hand by using microbes that have not be genetically modified sets good crops, he insists. T.I.P.’s Kenton Mehlberg delved into AgroLiquid’s crop fertility products and how they are developed through agronomic research and applied technology, not guesswork. Marketed as environmentally responsible nutrient products, the company’s stated objective is to help growers achieve the best possible yields using sustainable agricultural practices. AgroLiquid’s High NRG-N is 27 percent nitrogen in three forms and applied at planting or pre-planting stages to stay with the plant longer.
High NRG-N is a controlled-release program to better counterbalance elements such as temperature, time and moisture, which can not be controlled. It is a slow-release nitrogen that stays longer, taking 45-60 days for full release, and thus less nitrogen lost to moving water. Other products in the AgroLiquid lineup include NResponse, a nitrogen product for effective foliar and soil applications; eNhance, a nutritional supplement that combines proprietary chemistry with micronutrients and is an excellent
Above: Wayne Tucker (left in beige jacket) and Doug Traxel (vest) of Bio S.I. explained the company’s method of growing soil-borne microbes in digestors, concentrating them and having every batch tested so they’re not spreading pathogens.
source of crop-available sulfate; and accesS, which is 17 percent sulfur. If there was an overarching theme of the 2nd Annual Redox U, it was promoting the practice of adding nutrients and microbes to the soil, increasing its natural chemistry and the plants’ access to micronutrients, thus increasing uptake and ultimately yield.
BC�T February 59
EYES ON ASSOCIATES By WPVGA Associate Div. President, Sally Suprise, Ansay & Associates
Hello everyone, I am writing this on the third day of January, and I trust everyone had a wonderful holiday season with friends and family. The month of December was filled with year-end activities and preparations for 2018. The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) Board and committee chairpersons, Wisconsin Potato Industry Board and Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association Board all met to complete a five-year long-range plan.
On December 18, we also held our Associate Division Board meeting, and the final planning is complete for the 2018 Grower Education Conference. We are excited to once again offer vendor presentations at the conference in hopes of presenting more information and generating more booth visits to see whatâ€™s new in the industry.
The meeting was focused on vital issues to set the course of the WPVGA for the next five years.
A huge thank you goes out to all our exhibitors. Without them, we would not be able to hold the Grower Education Conference & Industry Show.
Below: The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association long-range planning meeting, December 19, at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point, was focused on vital issues to set the course of the Association for the next five years. John Cychosz (standing) of The Success Center facilitated the meeting.
BOARD TURNOVER With the advent of our next board meeting, there will be two outgoing Associate Division members, myself and Zach Mykisen of Big Iron.
60 BCďż˝T February
I have to say this has been a wonderful journey. I have been able to work with so many wonderful people. The WPVGA staff is the glue that holds this association together, and when you have the opportunity, let them know how much you appreciate them. At the February board meeting, there will be two new Associate Division Board members elected. With my board term coming to a close, I would like to say thank you for the pleasure of representing such a great organization. I look forward to continuing to support the WPVGA and Associate Division in the years ahead. Wishing you all the best,
Sally Suprise WPVGA Associate Division President
Auxiliary News By Devin Zarda, vice president, WPGA
Around this time last year, I received a phone call from my
friend and Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary (WPGA) Director Jody Baginski. Jody invited me to come to a Ladies Night Out event. I’m not going to lie. It was cold out, so I seriously considered telling her that I had a hot date with my couch while wrapped in a blanket. Instead, I decided to let her bubbly and infectious mood influence my decision, so I braved the cold. This decision has made more of an impact on my life than I ever could have expected. That night, I joined the WPGA, and this decision has been such a blessing.
OK, I get it. You’re probably rolling your eyes at the blessing part. I’m serious. I come from a family that truly believes in giving back.
I wanted to continue that legacy, however I didn’t have a vehicle to carry on the tradition. It was perfect timing that I walked into that Ladies Night Out on a freezing day in February. In a day and age where time is a valuable commodity, I understand it is limited. I know that my to-do list grows two items longer for every item that I cross off. Anyone else feel my pain? continued on pg. 62
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Auxiliary News. . . continued from pg. 61
WHEN YOU CAN, IF YOU CAN One of the beauties of our organization is that you’re able to help when you can, if you can. Volunteering doesn’t have to be every day, every week or even every month. Each person has their own talents that can help our organization. Do you love to teach others? Then maybe helping at the harvest parties would interest you! Are you super organized and able to lead a team? Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) is always looking for help behind the scenes. If you have the weekend of June 16 free, we always need help packaging meals at the FMSC event. If you’ve ever wanted to check out the Wisconsin State Fair, working the baked potato booth is always a fun time. You’ve got plenty of free time to wander around State Fair Park to see everything that happens (and to eat all of the foods). There also are other volunteer opportunities that we haven’t even discussed yet! Keep your eyes open for more information on those events in the next few months. One of my favorite parts of being an Auxiliary member is the networking opportunities. I love meeting new people, and being able to relate to other women within our industry is
70 No. opy | Volume $18/year | $1.50/c
THE VOICE OF
O WISCONSIN'S POTAT
2018 1 | JANUARY
TRY & VEGETABLE INDUS
RY WPVGA INDUST / SHOW & TRUCKS EQUIPMENT ISSUE
Like playing golf? We also have our annual golf outing scheduled for late spring! And finally, we hold an annual dinner. Our annual dinner is held in late June, and is a great time to connect with more women in the industry. If you would like to receive more information about upcoming events, simply check your mailbox. More information will be mailed to you
Above: Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) is always looking for help behind the scenes. At left in short-sleeve gray shirt, Tricia Kertzman helps Kristen Granger (turquoise shirt) seal a MannaPack meal for FMSC. Kristen is the agronomy lab manager for RPE, Inc., and Tricia is the wife and better half of Badger Common’Tater Managing Editor Joe Kertzman.
once everything is finalized. If you would like to know more about what it’s like being on the board, please reach out to any of our current board members. We’re all more than willing to answer any of your questions. If you’re not able to donate your time, please know that dues greatly assist us in accomplishing everything the WPGA does toward spreading the message of Wisconsin potatoes. If you’d like more information on joining the WPGA, please call the office at 715-623-7683.
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).
Joe Bushman President es g and J&J Potato Liberty Packin
62 BC�T February
EVENTS UP OUR SLEEVES What events do we as the board have up our sleeves? We’re trying something new with our Ladies Night Out! There will be one in Antigo and one in the Stevens Point area. While that’s nothing new, we’re going to host a paint-and-sip night instead of just a mixer! We are also planning on doing our annual spa night. Who doesn’t love a little pampering?
THE VOICE OF THE WISCONSIN POTATO & VEGETABLE INDUSTRY
EYE POTATO PINK Rears its Ugly Head TION GROW ER EDUCA Set rs Conference Speake RY A HALF CENTU n Of Crop Rotatio G REMOTE SENSIN rs Farme Forum Held for
worth the time.
a Potatoes Inc. continues Harvest at J&J back over a century. tradition that dates
Potatoes USA News Disney Expo Celebrates 25 Years Potatoes USA reaches 75,000 athletes at Disney The Potatoes USA team hit the ground running during the first week of the New Year with a prominent booth presence at the Disney Health & Fitness Expo for the 25th Anniversary of the Walt Disney World® Marathon in Orlando, Florida. The four-day Expo allowed Potatoes USA the opportunity to reach 75,000 athletes and spectators attending the weekend marathon. The Potatoes USA team handed out 6,000 “Potato Power: 13 Potato Recipes for Athletic Performance” booklets and 20,000 samples of a new recipe, “On the Go Potatoes,” developed by ambassador Leslie
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Bonci, a nutrition consultant for the Kansas City Chiefs, Carnegie Mellon University athletics and the Women’s National Basketball Association. The sample was petite potatoes roasted in olive oil and soy sauce, and then tossed in a Panko, sesame seed and Chinese five-spice mixture. In a Facebook post, Potatoes USA ambassador Carissa Bealert, a registered dietitian nutritionist who served as the announcer for all marathon races, prompted attendees to check out the exciting activities at the booth. Feedback from athletes and spectators was overwhelmingly
positive. In response to the 13 new performance recipes, including potato applications for pre-, during- and post-exercise, one attendee noted, “There really is no reason not to potato for athletic performance!” continued on pg. 64
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Potatoes USA News. . . continued from pg. 63
U.S. Potatoes are Stars of Myanmar Cooking Show U.S. potatoes are the stars of an exciting new cooking program in Myanmar titled “Travel to Taste.” These worldly spuds share the screen with co-stars Chef Syi Lwin and actor Phyoe Ngwe Soe. The highly anticipated program features U.S. potatoes in a variety of formats, including frozen, dehydrated and fresh. The series is to run for 20 episodes across various locales and airs on Maxima TV as well as many online platforms including YouTube, Facebook and Maxima’s homepage. This is a unique opportunity to showcase the superior quality of U.S. potatoes to the new Myanmar market, including chefs from hotels, restaurants and resorts. It also opens the possibility of more public relations and media opportunities in the country, which has seen a boom in tourism since reopening its borders in 2011. 64 BC�T February
Each 20-minute episode features flavorful dishes using U.S.-grown potatoes such as Creamy Yogurt Whipped Potatoes, Crispy Hash Browns with an Orange Sauce,
Potato Curry with Chapatti and Tea Leaves Salad with Hot and Crisp Potato Wedges, a Burmese classic. The series begins airing in February 2018.
Rustic Potato Galette is Scrumptious with Olive Season Salt Column and photos by Ali Carter, Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary Galettes fall under the category of recipe items that sound fancier to make than they are. Basically pastries with edges folded around filling, freeform style, and baked on a sheet pan, these pastries are super simple. With an abundance of pie dough in our fridge recently, I have been on a bit of a galette kick. Some dough filled with sweetened cream cheese and fresh blueberries offered me a quick dessert to place on the table for an after-dinner treat one night.
left in my pantry (Mike, if you’re reading this, please bring home more potatoes!), and the last of my pie dough chilling in the fridge, I decided to thinly slice that tater and create another version of a galette. This one made for the perfect side to serve with our soup for the evening meal. This little recipe uses some basic ingredients with one extra touch— homemade olive season salt. All I can say is, “Oh, my!”
And a few days ago found another bit of crust baked up with fluffy scrambled eggs and sautéed veggies for a filling breakfast.
This stuff is tasty and will be sprinkled on everything I devour until the last little bit of the batch is gone. Olive season salt has a bright olive flavor with an intense saltiness that I love.
Earlier today, with one lonely potato
continued on pg. 66
Rustic Potato Galette with Olive Season Salt 1 pie crust dough 1 small white onion, thinly sliced 2 tablespoons heavy cream ¼ cup ricotta cheese 1 medium potato, very thinly sliced (a russet or yellow will work best) Melted unsalted butter, for brushing ¼ cup grated white cheese (I chose a mix of mozzarella and parmesan) Sprinkling of white pepper and olive salt (see recipe below) Parsley, finely chopped, for garnish
Olive Season Salt 4 ounces pitted Kalamata olives ¼ teaspoon sea salt BC�T February 65
Ali's Kitchen. . . continued from pg. 65
INSPIRED BY GIADA I first heard of olive salt while sitting in the waiting room of my doctor’s office a couple of months ago. Halfheartedly flipping through the donated magazine that I had pulled from the pile on the side table I happened to glance up at the TV and see the start of a Food Network program. Chef Giada De Laurentiis, host of Food Network’s Giada at Home, was creating a basil olive salt and I was quite intrigued. Unfortunately, I only caught the first portion of her recipe before I was called back for my appointment. But, the idea stuck in my head, and on a whim today I determined to make a simple version of my own. A bit of this salt sprinkled onto the potato galette is fabulous! Creating the olive season salt is easy but does take a bit of time, however I encourage you to block off an hour or so of your day and give it a try! DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (F). 2. Roll out the dough to a circle (roughly 10 inches). 3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and transfer the circle of pie dough to the baking sheet. 4. In a small bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese and heavy cream. 5. Spread the ricotta mixture onto the pie dough, making sure to leave about a ½-inch border. 6. Top the ricotta with a thin layer of potatoes, overlapping each slice 66 BC�T February
just a bit. 7. Place the sliced onion on top of the potatoes. 8. Fold the edges of the pie dough over the filling, pinching and overlapping as needed to keep the filling tucked into the tart. 9. Brush the edges of the tart with melted butter and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the crust turns golden brown and the potatoes are tender. 10. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the tart with the shredded cheese. 11. Place back into the oven and bake for another 5 minutes or so, until cheese is melted. 12. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with white pepper, a bit of olive season salt and the parsley. 13. Serve warm. OLIVE SEASON SALT DIRECTIONS 1. Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. 2. Place the olives and salt into a food processor and pulse to finely chop (do not mix too much or you’ll end up with olive puree, not what we’re going for). 3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread olive salt mixture onto the baking sheet. 4. Bake for about 45 minutes to an hour, or until olives are completely dried. 5. Remove from the oven. 6. Once completely cooled, place into a food processor and pulse until the olives are of a powdery salt consistency.
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LEADING, NOT FOLLOWING. Others consistently try to imitate, but always fail to duplicate. We’ll help you solve your greatest challenges with the most innovative
LEADING, NOT FOLLOWING.
products and technology. Irrigate with confidence as you simplify your irrigation management, Others consistently try to imitate, but always
LEADING, NOT FOLLOWING.
reduce downtime andhelp increase youryour peace of mind. Season with afterthe season. fail to duplicate. We’ll you solve greatest challenges most innovative Others consistently try to imitate, but always products and technology. Irrigate with confidence as you simplify your irrigation management,
Talk toduplicate. your localWe’ll Zimmatic by Lindsay dealer to see how today’s will lead to fail to help®you solve your greatest challenges withinnovations the most innovative reduce downtime and increase your peace of mind. Season after season.
tomorrow’s success. products and technology. Irrigate with confidence as you simplify your irrigation management, Talk to your local Zimmatic ® by Lindsay dealer to see how today’s innovations will lead to
reduce downtime and increase your peace of mind. Season after season. tomorrow’s success.
Talk to your local Zimmatic ® by Lindsay dealer to see how today’s innovations will lead to tomorrow’s success.
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Potato Expo Coverage issue with features "French Fries NOT So Deadly After All!," "How the Tax Bill Affects Potato Growers" and an Interview...
Published on Feb 12, 2018
Potato Expo Coverage issue with features "French Fries NOT So Deadly After All!," "How the Tax Bill Affects Potato Growers" and an Interview...