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$18/year | $1.50/copy | Volume 70 No. 5 | MAY 2018

THE VOICE OF WISCONSIN'S POTATO & VEGETABLE INDUSTRY

VEGETABLES & FARM SAFETY/INSURANCE ISSUE INTERVIEW:

Eric Wallendal Wallendal Supply, Inc.

100% PARTICIPATION IN Healthy Grown by 2023? U.S POTATO GENEBANK Aids Peruvian Growers PRODUCE SAFETY RULE Has Many Exemptions ROOF COATINGS EXTEND Lives of Farm Buildings The view is good from the tractor at Wallendal Farms when cultivating snap beans for the processing market.


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On the Cover: Snap beans are cultivated on Wallendal Farms. This issue’s interviewee, Eric Wallendal, agronomy and general manager/co-owner of Wallendal Farms, says snap beans are sold for processing through wholesale purchasers who, in turn, sell to the canning company. A third-generation grower, Eric, who is newly elected to the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association Board of Directors, says he’s proud to carry on the legacies of his grandpa, dad and uncles.

8 BADGER COMMON’TATER INTERVIEW: Eric Wallendal, general manager and co-owner of Wallendal Supply, Inc., walks in a field of rye after setting up A-B lines for strip-tilling. Eric says on-farm research has always been highly valued on Wallendal Farms. “We conduct our own research on new practices, crops and products,” he notes. This year’s research includes rollercrimping rye and non-vernalized rye in soybeans.

DEPARTMENTS: ALI’S KITCHEN................... 57 AUXILIARY NEWS.............. 49 BADGER BEAT................... 46

20 WISCONSIN HAS ROLE IN POTATO DIVERSITY U.S. Potato Genebank preserves plant germplasm

26

32

EYES ON ASSOCIATES........ 41 MARK YOUR CALENDAR..... 6

NOW NEWS

PEOPLE

Attendance was good, the weather fair and business brisk at WPS Farm Show

Heartland Farms hosts press MARKETPLACE.................. 56 conference introducing six Alice in Dairyland candidates

NEW PRODUCTS............... 50

FEATURE ARTICLES:

NPC NEWS........................ 42

16 THE TIME IS NOW to expand Wisconsin’s fresh market Healthy Grown program

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

38 PREMIUM RUBBER ROOF COATINGS extend the lives of agricultural buildings

POTATOES USA NEWS....... 36

54 POTATOES, BUT NOT ALL VEGGIES, exempt from new Produce Safety Rule

WPIB FOCUS..................... 52

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Wisconsin Seed Potato Improvement Association Board of Directors: President: Charlie Mattek Vice President: Dan Kakes Secretary/Treasurer: Roy Gallenberg Directors: Jeff Fassbender & J.D. Schroeder

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: wpvga@wisconsinpotatoes.com 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: jkertzman@wisconsinpotatoes.com. The editor welcomes manuscripts and pictures but accepts no responsibility for such material while in our hands. BC�T May

5


MARK YOUR

Calendar MAY 27-31

WORLD POTATO CONGRESS Cusco, Peru

JUNE 2

WALK WISCONSIN Pfiffner Park Stevens Point, WI

19-20

CROP TRANSITION CONFERENCE Crowne Plaza Aire Minneapolis, MN

21

POTATO VIRUS DETECTION WORKSHOP & WASHINGTON STATE UNIVERSITY POTATO FIELD DAY Washington State University Research Farm Othello, WA

22

SPUD SEED CLASSIC WSPIA GOLF OUTING Bass Lake Golf Course Deerbrook, WI

25-27

UNITED FRESH McCormick Place Chicago, IL

JULY 7

PARDEEVILLE TRIATHLON Chandler Park, 8 a.m. Pardeeville, WI

10

POTATO VIRUS DETECTION WORKSHOP University of Maine Aroostook Farm Presque Isle, ME

10-12

FARM TECHNOLOGY DAYS Marshfield/Wood County, WI

17

ASSOCIATE DIV. PUTT-TATO OPEN GOLF OUTING Lake Arrowhead Golf Course Nekoosa, WI

18-20

NPC SUMMER MEETING Icicle Village Resort Leavenworth, WA

19

HARS FIELD DAY Hancock, WI

22-26

POTATO ASSOC. OF AMERICA ANNUAL MEETING Boise Centre Boise, ID

26

POTATO VIRUS DETECTION WORKSHOP PRIOR TO ANTIGO FIELD DAY Langlade County Airport and Research Station Antigo, WI

26

ANTIGO FIELD DAY Langlade County Airport and Research Station Antigo, WI

Planting Ideas Once in a while, when things are going wrong, someone does or says something that makes it all seem OK again. That very thing happened to me recently as I prepared to write this column under a tight deadline. I wasn’t feeling too good about myself, nor the headache I had or the foot of snow that was in the forecast for the weekend of April 14-15. I had seen and been made aware of two errors in the April issue that I was beating myself up badly for—the first in my own editorial column, where I said the upcoming World Potato Congress was March 27-31, which is, of course, incorrect, and should have read “May 27-31.” I happened to have lunch with some friends in the publishing industry shortly after I saw my own error and told them about it. They said, “Joe, you know when you proofread your own material, your mind reads what it’s supposed to say and not what it actually says.” Yes, I know. The second error was one born out of ignorance on my part. On page 10 of the April issue, I listed Bula-Gieringer Farms as a supplier of Creamer potatoes for The Little Potato Company, which is, again, incorrect. Bryan Bula, not Bula Gieringer Farms, is the supplier, and they are not one in the same. I am now well aware of that fact. But those errors seemed just a little less significant when an email arrived in my Inbox. It was from Sarah Lakewood, a customer service professional at Spectra Print Corporation, printer of the Badger Common’Tater. In her email, Sarah wrote: “Hey, Joe, it has been a long week and then this weekend, looking at the forecast, I just want to cry! I am glad it’s Friday, and my mother-in-law is in town for a visit, so that’s cool. I gave her a tour of Spectra Print this morning and she was very impressed with the printing process. I showed her the latest issue of the Common’Tater, and she loved the magazine—she’s a farmer from Michigan and loves to read anything about farming, machinery, etc. Oh, and she’s a big fan of The Little Potato Company—bonus! Thanks, Joe, for all the work you put into that magazine. Even casual readers find it a fascinating read. Great job!” Thanks, Sarah, I needed that. Please email me with your thoughts and questions. If you wish to be notified when our free online magazine is available monthly, here is the subscriber link: http://wisconsinpotatoes.com/blog-news/subscribe.

Joe Kertzman Managing Editor jkertzman@wisconsinpotatoes.com


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Interview ERIC WALLENDAL, Agronomy and General Manager/Co-Owner, Wallendal Supply, Inc. By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater

NAME: Eric Wallendal TITLE: Agronomy and general manager/ co-owner COMPANY: Wallendal Farms LOCATION: Grand Marsh, WI HOMETOWN: Adams, WI YEARS IN PRESENT POSITION: 4 PREVIOUS EMPLOYMENT: Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate SCHOOLING: University of WisconsinEau Claire ACTIVITIES/ORGANIZATIONS: Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association Board of Directors, Farm Bureau County Board and Wirehaired Vizsla breeder AWARDS/HONORS: 2018 PACRS (Petenwell and Castle Rock Stewards) Outstanding Farmer Recognition FAMILY: John and Monica Wallendal (parents), Megan Wallendal (wife), Raechel and Chad Kosler (sister and brother-in-law), and Andrew and Paula Wallendal (uncle and aunt). “These are the family members employed by Wallendal Farms, along with our three full-time employees, George, Dan and Fil.” HOBBIES: Ultimate Frisbee, Wirehaired Vizsla breeding/training 8

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“My grandpa, Pete, began farming in the Coloma area in the mid-1950s,” relates Eric Wallendal, who was elected to the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association Board of Directors earlier this year. “He grew a variety of vegetables, including pickling cucumbers and peppers.” As the farm grew, it was relocated to the Adams County, Wisconsin, area, where Grandpa Pete developed the land into center pivot irrigation. Potatoes were introduced to the cropping mix and became integral to the farm’s growth, especially with the second generation on the farm. Eric’s uncles, Robert and Andrew, and father, John, successfully grew the operation while partnering with the University of Wisconsin (UW) to help advance the agricultural industry. In 2007, Wallendal Supply, Inc. exited the potato industry. “Seven years later, my wife, Megan, and I joined the farm,” Eric says. “We were joined by my sister, Raechel, and her husband, Chad, a year later.” “Our generation changed our rotation to include pumpkin production and organic crops,” he relates. What vegetables are you growing, and how many acres of each? Our farm will grow a wide variety of vegetables, depending on the

needs of local contracts. Our recent vegetables include sweet corn, snap beans, dark-red kidney beans, pinto beans, Great Northern beans, cabbage, cucumbers, squash and pumpkins. Acres vary greatly from year to year, but overall these crops make up around 800-1,400 acres of production. We also grow forage corn for the New Chester Dairy, seed corn, alfalfa and food-grade soybeans on the rest of our acres. How’s it going with your pumpkin crop each year, and why did you decide to get into pumpkins? Who are your customers? Above: Eric Wallendal, co-owner and general manager of Wallendal Farms, is shown with two of the four Wirehaired Vizslas that he and his wife, Megan, own. A third-generation grower, Eric says he takes to heart the legacies that his grandpa, dad and uncles have left and are leaving him.


We are entering our fourth year of pumpkin production and have been enjoying it tremendously. Each year our production has nearly doubled. When the third generation entered the farm, we began searching for an alternative high-value crop to potatoes. We realized that, having four managers, we had the capacity to expand into a crop that requires a lot of management and attention. Pumpkins was the imminent answer. We have worked with a few local and national distributors to sell our pumpkins. They are sold to large grocery store chains throughout the Midwest, and a small amount is sold to our local grocery store and businesses to satisfy their needs. Are you still growing red kidney beans for Chippewa Valley Bean Co.? How many acres, and how is that endeavor? Four years ago, we resumed a relationship that my grandpa, Pete, and Russ Doane of Chippewa Valley Bean had at the beginning of their careers. We are currently growing about 250 acres of dark-red kidney beans (150 organically) for C.V. Bean. This puts our combine at about 80 percent capacity of what we feel we can comfortably harvest in a year with the bean equipment. We are beginning to experiment with direct-combining kidney beans to increase the number of acres we

can grow and harvest under optimal conditions. Kidney bean production for Chippewa Valley Bean was a natural fit for our farm and crop rotation. The early harvest compared to soybeans gives us much more flexibility with cover crop choices and practices to ensure our soil health and setup for next year’s crops. Are you growing vegetables for the process market? Who are your general vegetable customers? Historically, most of our vegetables that we grew went to the processing markets, but with changes in our crop mix, an increased amount is going to market without processing. Our snap beans and sweet corn contracts are still for processing. They are through wholesale purchasers who, in turn, sell to the canning company. Pumpkins are shipped either directly to the store or to a

Left: Part of Wallendal Farms’ crop rotation, Aroostook rye is shown in the field before crimping (opposite page), and then crimped and strip-tilled to make room for pumpkins (current page). Right: Eric Wallendal is dwarfed in a healthy field of forage corn.

distribution center. This year, we are producing cabbage, cucumbers and squash organically for fresh market consumption. Fresh market production has increased the amount of GAP (Good Agricultural Practices) and Food Safety certifications that we’ve had to obtain. However, we pride ourselves with shipping quality and safe products. Last year, we were our distributor’s highest-ranking quality shipper of pumpkins, which we’ll attempt to repeat annually. continued on pg. 10

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Interview. . . continued from pg. 9

Are sandy and loamy soils ideal for vegetables? Explain. Although sand has its challenges, we feel it is ideal for the crop mix that we’ve selected. Sand allows us to customize our fertility practices to each crop. Additionally, the drainage after heavy rains decreases the overall disease pressure that can affect the crop. The irrigation we have on the sandy environment allows us to spoon-feed the vegetable crops to their growing needs. This methodology also decreases leaching of nutrients.

As a process grower, are there certain standards you’re held to for vegetables that maybe other growers aren’t? Yes, each vegetable and/or contract has its own standards for quality depending on the buyer and the ultimate finished product. Some contracts require additional GAP or Food Safety certifications to ensure the product’s safety for the end consumer. This is a practice that we take very seriously. Overall crop and input tracking can become tedious, especially with

the multiple software programs that exist. Our farm is attempting to further streamline the process to make it more efficient and allow for growth. We must work very closely with our partners for transparency and to ensure the product’s quality. How long have you, personally, been on the farm and what are your main duties? Did someone take you under their wing and teach you the ropes, and if so, who? This 2018 season will be my fourth cropping year for our farm. I have taken over the crop input aspect of our farm from my father, and the crop protection and IPM (Integrated Pest Management) aspects from Andrew. I continue to work on a weekly basis with John and Andy as mentors to learn from their collective years of experience. Our local coop and other ag resources have been valuable in furthering my and our farm’s education. Additionally, I do the farm budgets and costs of production. This allows me to use my accounting and finance continued on pg. 12

Above and Left: The sun sets over a field of irrigated corn on Wallendal Farms, with this year’s vegetable crops including sweet corn, snap beans, dark-red kidney beans, pinto beans, Great Northern beans, cabbage, cucumbers, squash and pumpkins. 10 BC�T May


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Interview. . . continued from pg. 10

background and experience that I gained while working for the finance team at Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate. Chad manages the shop operations and field operations, and Raechel performs most of our record keeping and organizes our food safety and organic certifications. Megan maintains our production technologies and manages our research projects. How does your background give you a good foundation for what

you do? Working for Cargill, I gained a great amount of experience with manufacturing and enterprise budgets. This directly transferred to farming, allowing our farm to have individual crop projections and budgets that can be analyzed on multiple levels. Additionally, at Cargill, I managed commodity futures and physical positions. Having this experience makes marketing our farm’s crops more approachable.

Have there been technological advances on the farm? Machinery? In line with our historical stance on being innovative, the third generation actively seeks out new technologies and alternate practices of existing methods. Current technologies we utilize are: NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) imagery from UAV flights that is processed on farm; variable-rate irrigation; fertigation, fertilizing and planting; Smart Zone soil sampling; Crop Management Zone templates; GIS (Geographic Information System) data analytics; AquaSpy water probes; Real Time Cloud-sourced data; and telemetry. We are always open to and continually test or use new concepts. We use custom fabrication to fulfill needs that are not currently available in our marketplace. This includes a Top Left: The family of growers includes, in the back row, Chad Kosler and Megan Wallendal, and in the front row, left to right, Raechel Wallendal Kosler, John Wallendal, Monica Wallendal and Eric Wallendal. Top Right: Eric and Megan Wallendal hand out pumpkins donated to kids at Grand Marsh Elementary School. Bottom: George Ferge (kneeling) and Leroy Quip (walking) set up equipment on Wallendal Farms.

12 BC�T May


pumpkin windrower, seed treater for dry beans and organics, inter-seeding cover crops into row crops and other projects. Sustainability is such a catchphrase now. Are you more sustainable today? Environmentally friendly? If so, how? Sustainability means something different to everybody and is very difficult to quantify. Therefore, on our farm, sustainability is more of a culture and philosophy determining practices and goals. We realize that every operation that we perform has an impact, both positive and negative, on the ground on and around our farm. Therefore, before we perform an action, we consider both the short- and longterm ramifications. Doing so allows our farm to make a measurable impact on improving the overall environmental health.

size from half to 10 times our size. In organic production, we’re beginning to work with distributors that we are one of the larger growers for, and this allows our partners to grow in their scope along with our operation, creating a great relationship. What machinery are you using for planting and harvest? Our farm looks for different types of cultivators to

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What is your current crop rotation schedule? Our rotation is generally three-to-four years for most crops on a field. A typical rotation would be corn, legumes, pumpkins, and potatoes or repeat corn. This reduces the overall disease and insect pressure, and it varies chemical usage to reduce resistance. In our organic production, small grains will begin to play a larger role in the crop rotation, as well as cover cropping. This increases the overall diversity of crops, and in turn, the soil health. Are you one of the largest vegetable growers in the area? Our farm has sized itself to be relevant to companies we contract with. Many of them work with farms that vary in

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Interview. . . continued from pg. 13

Most of our crops are planted using a John Deere Max eMerge planter with vDrive (22” and 44” rows) to allow for maximum planting accuracy, but we also have a water wheel transplanter and planters that allow direct seeding into plastic mulch for some of our fresh vegetable crops. Lastly, we have wagons, modified buses and wash lines for our handpicked fresh market vegetables. Do you have your own storage? Packaging and shipping? For our fresh market production, we have a 160’x120’ building that we clean, stage and ship produce from. This is used for pumpkins, squash and cucumbers, or other produce that requires binning or a wash line. At peak harvest and shipping, we can store roughly 16 semi-trailer’s worth of produce. We try to turn over this within two days’ time (same day is preferable to protect the product’s lifespan). Anything you’re particularly proud of regarding the farm and your farming career? When I returned to the farm, I quickly realized how fortunate I was to belong to an operation in the Central Sands area of Wisconsin. After learning more about the industry, I can see how progressive the area is in researching new cropping practices and monitoring its environmental impact (see related feature on Healthy Grown in this issue). Additionally, our farm is very lucky to have mentors in our prior generation that support changes we want to make for future development. What do you see for the future of Wallendal Supply, Inc.? Wallendal Farms has continued to evolve with each generational change. Our generation is striving to make 14 BC�T May

its own impact on the legacy of the operation.

Above: Sunflowers were strip-tilled on Wallendal Farms into this living-red, flowering clover.

We will continue to grow highervalue crops that allow us to provide additional jobs and work more closely with the community around us. We also want to be closer to the final customer both for transparency and to teach them how their food is produced.

of the Central Sands flexibility to accommodate many crops.

Do you see changes on the horizon for vegetable growing in Central Wisconsin, and if so, in what ways? Like our operation, I see more crops being grown in the Central Wisconsin area. With decreased prices, farmers and contractors have become more creative to maximize acre production and to utilize the great potential

Additionally, the Central Sands area has been very active in providing research and guidance to regulating authorities to protect our land and water. This will continue to advance along with relationships between farmers and residents, and their use of shared resources. Is there anything you want to add or that I’ve missed, Eric? Historically, the farm has restored prairie area and created pollinator habitats. This last year, we planted 14 acres


of pollinator habitats and will plant additional acres every year. We are installing hive boxes in the spring to capture wild beehives. We will use bee-friendly winterized horizontal hives to keep bees around the farm. Our goal is to use these captured hives to increase our wild pollinator population. This year’s on-farm research includes roller-crimping rye and non-vernalized rye in soybeans; intercropping cover crops; strip-tilling into living cover; rare specialty crops; biological and bacterial product testing for soil and plant health; comparative trait studies; different cover crop species mixes; and more! Our collaborative work with UW researchers has become second nature to our operation, and we have very much enjoyed the relationships formed over the years. We’ve been blessed with solid and long-lasting relationships formed by our first and second generations, and we strive to continue developing these relationships. We truly take to heart the legacies that my grandpa, dad and uncles are leaving us. Above: Megan Wallendal is shown holding a large pumpkin among a sea of boxed pumpkin varieties. The third generation of Wallendal Farms began searching for an alternative highvalue crop to potatoes, and pumpkins was the imminent answer.

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Let’s Expand Wisconsin’s “Healthy Grown” Program Now The goal is to have 100 percent fresh market Healthy Grown participation by 2023 By Deana Knuteson, Ph.D., Healthy Grown and Wisconsin Ag Sustainability Programs Wisconsin’s “Healthy Grown” program has been advancing innovative, ecologically sound production systems, and currently around 8,000 acres of fresh market potatoes are grown under stringent environmental protocols.

been working to advance biointensive IPM (Integrated Pest Management) practices, reduce reliance on high-risk pesticides and to enhance ecosystem conservation efforts through the high-bar, sustainable potato and vegetable standards.

Healthy Grown is a whole farm approach of growing potatoes and vegetables using the best environmental practices possible, from pesticide use to promotion of ecological standards on the farm.

These practices are keeping Wisconsin on the cutting edge of sustainability documentation.

environmentally sound potato and vegetable production systems while enhancing value for growers with the ‘Good for you, good for the environment’ message.”

The program has been operating under the overall vision/mission of: “Healthy Grown is to maintain ecological, sustainable and

Current Healthy Grown certified growers are aiding the whole industry in on-farm sustainability perception and values, as this program has

Healthy Grown participants have

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Below: An ecological restoration plan is part of the Healthy Grown program. Pictured are controlled burns, a step in the prairie restoration process, at Wallendal Supply Inc. and Plover River Farms. Images courtesy of Tom Lynn and Joe Lacy


helped maintain Wisconsin’s status of holding to environmental principals and on-farm stewardship.

Grown program has always been based on grower-driven needs and advancements.

Wisconsin has fast become known as the green state.

Farming operations currently participating in the Healthy Grown program are Alsum Farms, Coloma Farms, Gary Bula Farms, Gumz Muck Farms, Isherwood Family Farms, Okray Family Farms, Plover River Farms Alliance and Wysocki Produce Farm.

GROWER-DRIVEN NEEDS Many growers, large to small, and shipping entities have been involved in the development of standards and requirements, and the Healthy

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Above: Retail bins and table skirts tout the Healthy Grown Potatoes “Good for you, good for the environment” message and program. Photo of WPS Farm Show booth courtesy of the UW-Madison Nutrient and Pest Management Program

To ensure high-bar, researchbased production systems are implemented, growers work closely with the University of Wisconsin continued on pg. 18

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Healthy Grown. . . continued from pg. 17

(UW)-Madison faculty and staff. With this approach, the whole industry has seen a positive return on investment based on Healthy Grown. While these advancements have helped the industry during the last decade, now is the time to expand grower participation so that the sales and marketing teams can incur extra value back to their industry. The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) Promotions and Consumer Education Committee has set an ambitious goal to have 100 percent fresh market participation for Healthy Grown by 2023. This goal will greatly increase certified potatoes and vegetables, but more importantly, would allow sales staff to seek additional “value” based on the sustainability and environmental messages of the program. Expansion of Healthy Grown provides an opportunity to: POTATO WAREHOUSE & WASH LINE

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• Extensively differentiate Wisconsin production within the complex marketplace • Increase the sales staff’s abilities to promote and explain the Wisconsin sustainability message • Enhance “value-added” criteria to ensure customer support and supply chain relationships Currently, the fresh market growers using the Healthy Grown program can document production advances and promote individual on-farm-level sustainability programs. Many growers have valued the outcomes for public relations and promotions with neighbors and their corresponding local communities. Beyond public relations, certified Healthy Grown growers have experienced multiple benefits to their production systems and farms.

Above: Prairie and wetland restoration brings back native flora and fauna, such as this cedar waxwing photographed on Healthy Grown land. Photo courtesy of the UW-Madison Nutrient and Pest Management Program

PARTICIPATION NEEDED But sales have been minimal, and without extended participation, extensive sales and promotional value experienced by the industry lags. While the WPVGA Promotions Committee sees value in 100 percent industry participation, new growers have expressed concerns about the time and documentation needed to become certified, the cost to implement Healthy Grown and the need for help with their individual on-farm promotions and marketing. The Promotions Committee wants to work with new growers to alleviate these concerns.

Such include better educational tools and direct interactions with UW-Madison faculty and staff, readiness for other existing audits (e.g. food safety) and being prepared for concerns of possible regulatory actions.

In March of 2018, the committee allotted funds for helping growers with documentation needs and alleviating some of the the time and marketing burdens, which should ease concerns for new growers who sign up for certification.

In fact, the entire industry benefits from these positive aspects of Healthy Grown when program highlights are promoted.

For certification, growers would need to complete the following documents. These would be done with help from their marketers and


staff from the UW and WPVGA. Documents include: 1. A Healthy Grown Standard assessment document for the farm, which includes multiple sections of farm and production management, IPM details, records and sustainability measurement assessments. This checklist-based assessment details multiple strategies and tactics to reach sustainable production systems, and growers must achieve a baseline level to certify. We estimate that this document should take between 30 to 60 minutes to complete. 2. An IPM Planning Protocol Form, where growers must describe specific details related to their integrated weed, disease and insect management programs and have this plan reviewed by UW Extension specialists (Jed Colquhoun, Russ Groves and Amanda Gevens). This approach verifies program strengths and encourages educational opportunities and interactions with specialists. We estimate that this document could take two to five hours to complete, which includes the time needed to interact with UW specialists.

can provide them with a “stairstep” approach, where within three years growers could work toward certification. Over time, using this approach, growers would learn about the program needs and documents, and eventually become fully certified as Healthy Grown. Of course, growers could certify immediately if they desire to do so, but we can also use the stair-step

approach for those who desire these incremental changes. If you need more information about the Healthy Grown program in general or would like to discuss the expansion of the program, please contact Deana Knuteson at dknuteson@wisc.edu, 608-3478236. Or contact Dana Rady at the WPVGA office, drady@wisconsinpotatoes.com, 715-623-7683. Healthy Grown information can be found on the WPVGA website at: http://wisconsinpotatoes.com/ healthy-grown/. If you are interested in signing up and checking out the updated standard and process, please contact Julie Braun at the WPVGA office, jbraun@wisconsinpotatoes.com, 715-623-7683.

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Wisconsin-Based U.S. Potato Genebank Aids Peruvian Growers State plays key roles preserving potato diversity and in the upcoming World Potato Congress By Alfonso Del Rio, Ph.D., U.S. Potato Genebank Research Lab, UW-Madison Department of Horticulture Born in Lima, Peru, where he obtained a degree in biology, Alfonso Del Rio went on to earn master’s and Ph.D. degrees in plant breeding and plant genetics from the University of Wisconsin (UW)-Madison.

In 1992, while working on his master’s thesis at the International Potato Center in Peru, Dr. John Bamberg, head of the U.S. Potato Genebank and a UW professor, offered Alfonso a research

assistantship to join his program as a graduate student. “The U.S. Potato Genebank [USPG] fulfills the very important mission of preserving plant diversity for future generations,” Del Rio explains. “Things are changing all around. Climate patterns are different and more unpredictable today, pests and diseases are spreading to places where they did not exist before, and people are now more interested in better nutrition,” he says. “Studying and safeguarding germplasm that can help scientists to find solutions to all of the problems is a great feeling,” Alfonso says. “But the task also presents big responsibility.” His work at the USPG has also allowed Del Rio to network with colleagues from all over the world, Above: In June 2017, Alfonso Del Rio evaluates potato tubers at the U.S. Potato Genebank’s experimental fields in Puno, Peru.

20 BC�T May


including Cusco, Peru, birthplace of the potato and host of the 2018 World Potato Congress, May 27-31. As part of the World Potato Congress, Del Rio is co-chair for a technical session titled “Potato Biodiversity and its Use in Breeding, Nutrition and Health.” “Holding the World Potato Congress

for the first time in Latin America will be an excellent opportunity to integrate Latin American professionals, farmers and students with members of other regions of the world,” Del Rio enthuses.

Above: Peruvian women wear traditional clothing while they work, sharing their views about the potatoes, which Alfonso Del Rio says is a positive thing, as he wants to develop and select varieties that the local farmers like. The gentleman wearing the baseball hat in the second image is a Peruvian cooperator, Jesus Arcos, who’s in charge of the potato program in Peru’s Puno region.

“I feel both groups will benefit from the interaction and learn about what’s new from a global perspective. I hope this also unlocks chances of

future collaborations and educational opportunities,” he remarks.

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U.S. Potato Genebank. . . continued from pg. 21

INCAN POTATO PRODUCTION From a historical view, having the meeting in Peru offers participants the opportunity to visit the place where potatoes originated and to possibly see how local farmers continue practicing potato cultivation as it was done during the Incan Empire. The meeting of the Latin American Potato Association will be held in conjunction with the World Potato Congress, offering additional chances to learn about potato research in an important region. Del Rio has networked with the CIP—the International Potato Center in Peru—and non-governmental organization (NGO) partners, as well as the National Institute of Innovation (INIA) in Peru during trips there.

of expanding the geographical representation of two potato species native to this country, Solanum fendleri and S. jamesii.

His work in Peru has been focused on research to promote sustainable agriculture, mitigate climate change and improve conservation and protection of genetic diversity.

“We were able to successfully use DNA-based markers to identify geographic regions with high levels of genetic diversity. Now we are integrating climate models to identify places at risk, so we can set up collecting priorities,” Alfonso says.

Back home, since 1992, Del Rio and the USPG have been collecting potato germplasm in the Southwest United States, with the main goal

Valuable genetic traits have been found in the newly collected materials. The USPG’s efforts in collecting have called the attention

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Above: In the Andes, damage caused by frost in potato fields is serious and produces massive reduction in yield or total loss. Shown is an advanced potato line that is a cross between native Peruvian potatoes and one wild species, S. commersonii, known for extreme cold hardiness.

of the international community. “In 2013, our collecting activities were featured in the documentary “Seeds of Time,” where it was emphasized that, in a changing world, our work is critical for biodiversity protection and conservation for the future,” Del Rio relates. He goes on to describe one instance when international cooperation had a positive outcome and brought benefits to farmers. FROST DAMAGE “In the Andes, damage caused by frost in potato fields is serious and produces massive reduction in yield or total loss,” he says. “At the USPG, we explored the alternative of breeding for enhanced resilience to low temperatures.” “For that purpose, we developed crosses between Peruvian native potatoes and one wild species, S. commersonii, known for extreme cold hardiness. The families created showed segregation for good levels of tolerance to freezing temperatures,” Del Rio notes. The next step was to send thousands


of seeds to Peru for field trials, where they were planted in diverse fields known for frost episodes during the growing season. “In cooperation with colleagues in Peru, we conducted evaluations to identify plants with good agronomic characteristics and exceptional levels of frost tolerance. After years of selection and evaluation, we identified two elite species with attractive tuber shape and good productivity levels and hardiness,” he says. Now these selections, created at the USPG facilities in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, are in the process of being released as new varieties at the end of 2018 by the Peruvian national program in Puno. “Recently we have been working with them on a project aimed to use native potato varieties to make beer, which has been successful. This could be a great opportunity to add a new

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market for potatoes not only in Peru but elsewhere,” he proposes. Over the years, with the help of CIP and local farmers, Del Rio and the USPG have evaluated responses of many Peruvian native potato varieties to the application of calcium (in the

Above: Alfonso Del Rio (second from right) shows, from left to right, Jesus Arcos (INIA-Puno), Silvia Rondon (Oregon State University) and Jiwan Palta (UW Madison) potato plants in Puno, Peru.

form of gypsum powder) and found that it significantly increased yield and tuber quality. continued on pg. 24

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U.S. Potato Genebank. . . continued from pg. 23

For example, yield increases ranged from 10 to 100 percent over the control. Between the years 2012 and 2014, they conducted a large evaluation where more than 1,200 native varieties, part of CIP’s collection, were tested for responses to calcium.

“A couple of years ago, I helped CITE Papa [Center for Innovation and Technology Transfer for Potato and other Andean crops] secure external funding and validate a technology to produce disease-free seeds in Latin American cultivated potato species,” Del Rio explains.

The results revealed that about 30 percent of them showed positive response.

“This technology, developed by the Wisconsin-based company CETS [Controlled Environment Potato Seed Production System] generates seeds under controlled conditions, and therefore can be implemented in any place at any climate zone,” he says.

IMPROVED YIELD & QUALITY “This was a great development, since it showed there is a way to improve yield and quality in native cultivars using gypsum that is very affordable and easy to apply at planting,” Del Rio remarks. Throughout Latin America, there is a lack of seeds of good quality. Potato farmers in most of the developing countries recycle their own harvested tubers to be used as seeds.

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The results of this project showed that production of quality tuber seeds of native potatoes was possible with CETS, and it unlocks an opportunity to implement this system in the region. A lot of this work seems to lead up perfectly to the World Potato

Congress in June. “I hope the World Potato Congress creates an opportunity to network with colleagues from all over the world and learn about what is happening in every region,” Del Rio says. “I hope we all come back from the Congress with better insights about the global efforts on challenging climate change, preserving genetic diversity, integrating technology for research and incorporating new nutrition options,” he adds. “It is very important to think that potato could be an option to fight hunger in many vulnerable societies, so as a global potato community, we should make efforts to identify those places and develop strategies to promote food security and sustainable agriculture,” Alfonso concludes.

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Now News 2018 WPS Farm Show Drew Large Crowds Attendance was good, the weather was fair, and business was brisk If parking was any indication, the projected 20,000 visitors to the 2018 WPS Farm Show all made their way there on March 27-29. Parking is spread out in many lots and avenues, and it is often an agility course of walking over banks and through ditches to get from the car to the showgrounds.

In its 58th year, the WPS Farm Show is held on the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Grounds in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, a perfect venue with plenty of room and easy access for hauling, unloading and loading large farm implements, tractors and other machinery and equipment. The show features agriculture’s

newest, finest and most advanced tools of the trade, boasting 500 vendors, many offering digital and high-tech monitoring devices, software platforms, unmanned, selfdriving aerial and ground vehicles, probes, sensors and more. Visitors from Wisconsin, Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Minnesota, Illinois, Canada and other reaches got a firsthand look at the latest farming equipment, machinery, tools and services. Also offered were seminars, a food tent, kiddie tractor pull and a threeday silent auction benefiting the Wisconsin FFA Foundation. Above: It might have been 6-year-old Vaughn’s first time at the WPS Farm Show, but he had no problem reaching the pedals of a Gehl Z35 Gen 2 Compact Excavator. Left: The baked potato and French fry booth at the WPS Farm Show, with product provided by McCain Foods, is staffed by Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary members and volunteers. From left to right are Patti Hafner, Sarah Agena, Carole Gagas, Sheila Rhine, Brittany Bula, Lauren Rhine, Jacquie Wille, Marilyn Wierzba and Mr. Potato Head.

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Ag Banquet Awards Leaders & Contributions Portage County Business Council holds Agriculture Appreciation Banquet An annual tradition, on March 12, 2018, the Portage County Business Council held its American Agriculture Appreciation Banquet at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. Todd Kuckkahn of the Portage County Business Council welcomed guests

and gave an invocation, and Portage County Ag Agent Ken Schroeder was the master of ceremonies. Keynote speaker Layne Cozzolino, executive director of Farmshed, gave a fascinating presentation on “Foods as the Connection to Our Place.” After complimentary hors d’oeuvres

Above: For its success and commitment to the Wisconsin agribusiness community, Hamerski Farms of Plover, Wisconsin, was presented the Outstanding Contribution to Ag Award at the 2018 American Agriculture Appreciation Banquet held by the Portage County Business Council. From left to right are Portage County Agriculture Agent Ken Schroeder, master of ceremonies; Dale O’Brien, manager of Hamerski Farms; Jon Hamerski; Dawn Hamerski; and Lori Hoerter.

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and a formal dinner, Schroeder presented Hamerski Farms of Plover, Wisconsin, with the Outstanding Contribution to Ag Award for its success and commitment to the Wisconsin agribusiness community. More awards were given to Outstanding FFA Seniors Shelby Stuczynski (Amherst FFA); Justin

Wisinski (Stevens Point Area Senior High School FFA); and Wyatt Stanislawski (Rosholt FFA). Agri-Business Scholarships were awarded to Bailey Adams and Ellisa Frederickson, and Suzanna Viau landed the 4-H Leadership in Agriculture Award. One in 10 jobs in Portage County are

in agriculture, with 280,000 acres in production and over 1,500 farms. The American Agriculture Appreciation Banquet supports the success of agri-business in Portage County, and presentations made to students and their leaders are a perfect way to ensure its continued success in the future.

WPVGA Hosts Business Seminar for Members Labor recruitment and compliance, taxes and succession planning presented

As part of its mission to advance the interests of its members through education and information, the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) held a business seminar, March 26, at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point. WPVGA members were invited to attend the seminar and hear presentations on subjects that directly affect them and their agribusinesses. The day-long business seminar included coffee and rolls in the morning and a lunch buffet. First on the docket were Rosa Ortega and Angelica Vazquez of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development who delved deeply into the subject of Workforce Recruitment Resources for Farm Organizations. A subject that affects nearly all Wisconsin potato and vegetable

growers, Ortega and Vasquez gave an overview of Wisconsin’s Migrant Labor Law and H-2A employment. The Migrant Labor Law was enacted in 1977 to provide standard wages, hours and working conditions for migrant workers; standards for migrant labor camps; and migrant camp free access rights to ensure that workers and their families are not isolated from the community or the services for which they are legally entitled. Potato and vegetable growers benefited from explanations of labor contracts, registration requirements and timing, recruitment reporting, worker documentation, work hours permitted, pay requirements, housing, food and meals, employee rights, worker training and safety, available resources, auditing and more.

Left: Rosa Ortega (white sweater) of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development provides information about “Worker Recruitment Resources for Farm Organizations” to attendees of a business seminar hosted by the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association, March 26, in Stevens Point. Right: Officer Nate Zirngible of the Antigo Police Department spoke about workforce safety, and specifically on how to prepare for an active shooter situation, which is, unfortunately, a relevant and timely subject in today’s world.

FARM COMPLIANCE ISSUES In a related subject, Kristin Tout, Tim Vandenboom and Raul Esparza of the U.S. Department of Labor, Wage & Hour Division, gave a presentation on “Compliance Issues for Farms.” The threesome discussed the Fair Labor Standards Act, including minimum wage and wage credits, the Migrant & Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, Field Sanitation Standards and H-2A continued on pg. 30 BC�T May 29


Now News. . . continued from pg. 29

temporary agricultural workers. After lunch, Dan Ehr, a certified public accountant and senior tax manager for Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP, detailed many tax issues impacting farmers. Dan gave background information on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act effective in 2018. He talked about corporate versus pass-through tax rates and deductions, qualified business income deductions, property depreciation, business interest deduction limitation and other business considerations.

exit, and most importantly, being happy. TRUE VALUATION They warn growers and ag business owners not to misunderstand the value of their business or its net sales proceeds and warn about not planning for their succession and exit from the business, and treating the business as a product rather than a process. They also suggest working with the right team to help in succession and exit planning.

Succession and exit planning for agriculture business owners were the topics of conversation for Kelton Dopp and Kevin Eismann of Epiphany Law. Not only did Dopp and Eismann talk about the benefits of exit planning, but also mistakes to avoid. They strongly suggest maximizing the value of an ag business as part of succession and exit planning, minimizing taxes, protecting family and key employees, controlling your

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Above: An inspector with the U.S. Department of Labor working in the Wage & Hour Division, Tim Vandenboom discussed labor compliance issues for farms, including the Fair Labor Standards Act, the Migrant & Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act, Field Sanitation and H-2A temporary agricultural workers.

workforce safety, and particularly, planning for an active shooter situation. Unfortunately a reality in today’s world, active shooter preparation is occurring in schools and businesses across the country, and Officer Zirngible shaped his presentation toward ag business owners. In the case of an active shooter, he recommended following the ALICE procedure—Alert, Lockdown, Identify, Counter, Evacuate—saying that, to him, evacuating is the most important step. He suggests businesses install alarm systems and cameras, dialing 9-11, giving dispatchers as much information as possible, looking out for coworkers who may be having financial or personal difficulties and being aware of your surroundings, including exits and escape routes to get out safely. Though a sobering way to end the day, the WPVGA furthered its mission of providing education, information and sound research to its members and advancing their interests as growers and ag industry professionals.


Valley Honors North Central Irrigation Company named a Performance Plus Dealer at national sales meeting Valley® Irrigation announced North Central Irrigation of Plainfield, Wisconsin, as a Valley Performance Plus Dealer at the company’s 2018 national sales meeting. North Central Irrigation has earned this honor for excelling in the areas of service, aftermarket support and sales. The Valley Performance Program honors dealerships that excel in a variety of measures, including customer service ratings, goal achievements and core requirements in relation to dealership growth plans. “We are proud to take the opportunity to honor our dealers for their hard work and commitment to Valley products and providing superior service to our customers,” states Rich Panowicz, vice president of North American sales. “Being named a Valley Performance Plus Dealer demonstrates their aptitude to go above and beyond in delivering the highest level of service and product support in the industry,” Panowicz adds. The Valley Performance Program allows the opportunity for dealers to be recognized for their continued customer support and encourages them to go the extra mile in providing the highest level of product knowledge and advanced irrigation expertise. About Valley Irrigation Valley Irrigation founded the center pivot irrigation industry in 1954, and the brand is the worldwide leader in sales, service, quality and innovation. With historical sales of more than 200,000 center pivots and linears, Valmont-built equipment annually irrigates approximately 25 million acres around the world. Valley Irrigation remains dedicated to providing innovative, precision irrigation solutions now and into the future. For more information, please visit valleyirrigation.com. Above: Len Adams (second from left), group president of Valmont Global Irrigation, presents the Performance Plus Dealer Award to Valley Irrigation dealer members, including Scott Polzin (second from right) of North Central Irrigation.

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People Top Six Alice in Dairyland Candidates Announced Heartland Farms hosts event introducing candidates for 71st Alice in Dairyland On Friday, March 16, Heartland Farms, Inc. of Adams County, Wisconsin, hosted a press conference at its Farm Operations, Technology & Training Center announcing the top six candidates for the 71st Alice in Dairyland. They are Kristen Broege, who grew up on a dairy farm in Janesville; Sydney Endres, who was raised on a Jersey farm in Lodi; Alexus Grossbier, who grew up in Elk Mound on her family’s hobby farm; Jacqueline Hilliard, a Wisconsin Dells native who discovered her passion for agriculture on her parents’ grain farm; Kaitlyn Riley of Gays Mills, who grew up on her family’s registered Jersey dairy farm; and Megan Schulte, who spent her childhood in Hammond on her family’s dairy farm and raised her own herd of beef cattle. The candidate introduction kick-off event is a key step in the selection of Wisconsin’s next “agricultural ambassador.” Following an extensive interview 32 BC�T May

process, the 71st Alice in Dairyland will be selected from among the six candidates at the end of the finals program, May 17-19, in the town of Adams.

“For all six top candidates, participating in the finals process will be an invaluable asset to build upon throughout their careers,” SiemersPeterman adds.

For two months, the candidates participate in a rigorous interview process, allowing them to showcase their communications and public relations skills required to be the next Alice in Dairyland.

Alice in Dairyland is a one-year, full-time public relations position with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. The start date for the 71st Alice is June 4, 2018.

Although only one of the six top candidates will be selected as the 71st Alice, the personal and professional growth experienced by all six candidates participating in the process will carry far into their future careers.

In this highly visible and fast-paced position, Alice in Dairyland travels throughout the state teaching rural and urban audiences of all ages about Wisconsin’s extensive agricultural industry.

AGRICULTURAL DIVERSITY “The Alice in Dairyland program has a strong history of promoting diversity of Wisconsin’s agriculture industry, and one of the six top candidates will continue this tradition as Wisconsin’s most recognized agricultural spokesperson,” says 70th Alice in Dairyland Crystal Siemers-Peterman.

In the position, Alice in Dairyland cultivates relationships with television, radio and print media outlets, writes and delivers speeches and utilizes social media to tell the stories of Wisconsin agriculture. Above: The 71st Alice in Dairyland candidates are, left to right, Megan Schulte, Kaitlyn Riley, Jacqueline Hilliard, Alexus Grossbier, Sydney Endres and Kristen Broege.


Additional duties include developing and executing marketing plans, delivering classroom presentations and networking with industry professionals. Each year, a different Wisconsin county hosts the Alice in Dairyland interview activities, with Adams County serving as the host this year.

For more information, including how you can attend two public events during the finals in Adams County in May, visit www.aliceindairyland. com, or direct program questions to Alice in Dairyland Program Manager Ti Gauger at 608-224-5115 or ti.gauger@wisconsin.gov. continued on pg. 34

Left: Current Alice in Dairyland Crystal SiemersPeterman (center) holds court with the top six candidates vying to take over her reigns this coming June. From left to right are Megan Schulte, Kaitlyn Riley, Jacqueline Hilliard, SiemersPeterman, Alexus Grossbier, Sydney Endres and Kristen Broege. Right: Jeremie Pavelski, president of Heartland Farms, welcomes attendees to a press conference announcing the candidates for the 71st Alice in Dairyland. The event was held Friday, March 16, at the Heartland Farms Operations, Technology & Training Center.

BC�T May 33


People. . . continued from pg. 33

Houlihan Honored for 30 Years with the WPVGA WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan continues to serve the industry During its Board of Directors meeting, March 19, 2018, the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) and staff members honored Executive Director Tamas Houlihan for 30 years of service to the industry. Houlihan, who began his career with the WPVGA on November 23, 1987, is a 1985 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point (UWSP) and has a bachelor’s degree with a double major in communications and German. He served 27 years as the managing editor of the Badger Common’Tater magazine, the official voice of the Wisconsin potato and vegetable industry, and was named executive director of the WPVGA on December 4, 2014. In those 27 years, Houlihan also held the title of communications director, and in the fall of 2014, he served his third stint as interim executive director, having also filled the role in 2000 and 2008. With his appointment in 2014, Houlihan became the 13th executive director of the state’s potato association, which was founded in 1948.

“It’s been a great 30 years,” Houlihan says. “I had no idea I would be here this long! I’ve learned to love this industry, the great people, and I’ve learned from the best.” DEDICATED SERVICE WPVGA Board of Directors President Josh Mattek presented Houlihan with a plaque commemorating his 30 years of “Outstanding and Dedicated Service to the Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Industry.” The Board and staff of the WPVGA also chipped in on a gift card for Houlihan, good towards new golf clubs, as well as a cake to celebrate his 30 years with the WPVGA. Prior to joining the WPVGA in 1987, Houlihan worked as the sports editor and news editor at the Rhinelander Daily News.

34 BC�T May

Above: Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) Executive Director Tamas Houlihan (left) was presented with a plaque, gift card and cake in honor of his 30th anniversary serving the industry. Josh Mattek (right), president of the WPVGA Board of Directors, did the honors of presenting Houlihan with the plaque and gifts.

At the WPVGA, Houlihan was the recipient of a Distinguished Service Award in 1997, the President’s Award in 2001, the Agri-Communicator Award in 2008 and the Wisconsin Seed Potato Industry Leadership Award in 2011. He also received the WPVGA President’s Award in 2015. He lives in Stevens Point with his wife, Paula, and they have seven children. Tamas enjoys biking, playing softball, traveling and reading, and he is an avid sports fan who loves football (especially the Green Bay Packers), basketball and baseball. Left: Nothing says “Congratulations on 30 Years” better than a white cake with blue frosting. The cake helped commemorate WPVGA Executive Director Tamas Houlihan’s 30 years serving the Wisconsin potato and vegetable industry.


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Potatoes USA News Potatoes USA Chooses Leadership The Potatoes USA 2018 Annual Meeting concluded, March 15, with the election of a new board chairman and executive committee.

Dan Moss of Declo, Idaho, was elected to serve as chairman for the coming year. Jaren Raybould of Saint Anthony, Idaho, and Phil Hickman

of Horntown, Virginia, were elected to co-chair the Domestic Marketing Committee, and Marty Myers of Boardman, Oregon, and Steve Streich of Kalispell, Montana, were elected to co-chair the International Marketing Committee. Sheldon Rockey of Center, Colorado, Above: The Potatoes USA Executive Committee includes, back row, left to right, Heidi AlsumRandall of Friesland, Wisconsin; Chris Hansen of Bliss, New York; Eric Schroeder of Antigo, Wisconsin; Jaren Raybould of Saint Anthony, Idaho; Steve Streich of Kalispell, Montana; Potatoes USA CEO Blair Richardson; and Marty Meyers of Boardman, Oregon. In the front row, left to right, are John Halverson of Arbyrd, Missouri; Jason Davenport of Arvin, California; Dan Moss of Declo, Idaho (chairman); Sheldon Rockey of Center, Colorado; and Phil Hickman of Horntown, Virginia. Left: Potatoes USA representatives from Wisconsin are, from left to right, Keith Wolter, Mark Finnessy, Erin Baginski, Heidi Alsum-Randall and Eric Schroeder. Mark was elected to the Administrative Committee, while Heidi and Eric were voted into the Executive Committee.

36 BC�T May


and Heidi Alsum-Randall of Friesland, Wisconsin, were elected to co-chair the Industry Outreach Committee. Chris Hansen of Bliss, New York, and Eric Schroeder of Antigo, Wisconsin, were elected to co-chair the Research Committee, and Jason Davenport of Arvin, California, was elected to chair the Finance and Policy Committee. In his acceptance speech, Dan thanked outgoing Chairman John Halverson of Arbyrd, Missouri, for his excellent leadership this past year. Dan noted the progress made in research programs as increased funding has been secured for potato production and nutritional studies. Dan praised the new “Potatoes & Performance Strategy” and expressed his excitement for the “What Are You Eating?” execution revealed at the meeting. He complimented the marketing staff for work being conducted

in the international markets and the resulting continued growth in exports, yet cautioned he is concerned about the negative trade environment and potential impacts on exports. He is looking forward to working with

Above: Newly elected Potatoes USA Chairman Dan Moss noted the progress made in research programs as increased funding has been secured for potato production and nutritional studies.

the executive committee members to further the Board’s mission to strengthen demand for U.S. potatoes.

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BC�T May 37


Roof Coatings Extend the Lives of Agriculture Buildings Before getting a roof replaced, make inquiries into having it coated for roughly half the price By Joe Kertzman, managing editor, Badger Common’Tater

Two companies have agreed to share information with Badger Common’Tater readers about their products and services, and they have at least one main product in common—RC-2000 Premium Rubber Roof Coating from Inland Coatings. Although the rubber roof coating is not new, with Inland Coatings celebrating 40 years in business, many metal buildings in Wisconsin and the Midwest are aging, and coatings have come to light as costeffective roof solutions.

farm [Hafner Seed Farms, Inc.] that had one of their buildings coated for a fraction of the price of new,” Hulman relates. “At that point, we realized there was a need in the area with all the aging agricultural buildings and industrial buildings.”

This is according to A.J. Hulman of H&H Coatings in Deerbrook, Wisconsin. Hulman worked for a coating and construction company for several years before teaming up with Brad Hafner.

“We wanted to give another option to our clients rather than an expensive roof replacement,” Hulman says.

“The idea came from Brad’s family 38 BC�T May

Schweitzer Spray Coatings, LLC, a highly motivated family-owned and operated business in West Bend,

Wisconsin, has been coating roofs for seven years, and it’s solely all the company does. “We specialize in coatings and pride ourselves on keeping the bar high by staying abreast of the newest methods for the best results,” says Luke Schweitzer, co-owner with wife, Linda, of Schweitzer Spray Coatings. “Seven years ago, I was presented the idea of spray coating and saw a true need for it,” Schweitzer relates. “With a carpentry and roofing background, and having family in the painting business, I found spray coating to be an easy transition and a perfect fit.” Above: Pristine, white and protected are the coated agriculture buildings on Spychalla Farms in Antigo, Wisconsin, after Schweitzer Spray Coatings gave them the full treatment.


SOLVENT-BASED COATING Inland Coatings’ rubber seam sealers and solvent-based rubber roof coatings are high-tensile-strength, adhesive coatings that expand and contract in heat and cold, stand up to the sun’s UV rays and are Energy Star rated with 87 percent solar reflectance to keep buildings cooler in hot summer months. “The product is first now being marketed in the northern regions,” Schweitzer explains. “The southern region has been the primary focus due to the extreme heat and taking advantage of a cool roof system.” According to Schweitzer and Hulman, Inland RC-2000 rubber roof coating has the highest elongation of any similar products, meaning it expands 18-05 Badger Common'Tater 1-3page AD

up to nearly 500 percent to seal roofs and leaks, and the sealer works on fasteners, seams and penetrations of various roof surfaces. “The product we use is a handmade, unique line of synthetic rubber coatings, providing excellent durability, corrosion protection, energy savings and cost-effective solutions for many of today’s roofing problems,” Schweitzer says. “It will not peel, chip or crack, even under the harshest, uncontrollable (7x3).v2.1.pdf 1 2018-04-13 9:17 AM

Above: H&H Coatings treats an Antigo, Wisconsin, potato warehouse where there had been leaking problems for many years. The close-up image shows what a typical seam and screw look like after treated with a tight, leak-free, aesthetically pleasing coating that will remain that way for years to come.

weather conditions we face throughout our four seasons,” he adds. Inland products work to form seamless, waterproof membranes that can be used on any metal, continued on pg. 40

BC�T May 39


Roof Coatings. . . continued from pg. 39

rubber, modified bitumen or concrete surface to create a leak-free, flexible and durable coating that will stand the test of time. Hulman says, “As a metal building ages, it leaks, in as little as 10 years in some cases, causing wood and structural damage. Metal wears out over time, fasteners loosen and elongate, which leads to roof leaks.” “Our two-part system of a seam sealer and rubber roof coating seals the leaks that can lead to serious structural damage and stored crop damage,” he explains. REASONABLY PRICED SOLUTION “We’ve had great feedback from relieved customers. They go from making the hard decision of ripping down a building due to an extremely expensive, complex roof replacement to having a reasonably priced solution to the problem,” Hulman details. Hulman and Schweitzer say their roof coating services generally cost 50 percent of a full roof replacement. And roof coating, according to Hulman, is classified as roof maintenance, which can be deducted on current-year taxes. “The product has a rusting agent that can stop the rusting process,” Schweitzer says. “The potato and vegetable community we’ve done

work with has been extremely satisfied. We’ve had numerous repeat customers and referrals.” H&H coatings offers fastener tightening and replacement, ridge cap replacement and exterior building painting. “We take great pride in listening to our customers, as we grew up in the farming community,” Hulman says. “Brad Hafner is a third-generation potato farmer and understands the ins and outs of maintaining farm buildings.” Schweitzer Spray Coatings offers

synthetic rubber roof coatings and pressure washing services. “We can add decades of roof life for about half the cost and inconvenience compared to replacing the roof with new steel/ metal,” Schweitzer says. “There is no need to shut down any business while we coat your building in a timely manner,” Hulman adds. “From an agricultural standpoint, the roofs of older buildings, especially ones with spray foam insulation, can be expensive and complicated to tear off, taking time, energy and effort.” The two family-owned businesses take pride in the hands-on services they offer, helping the ag industry maintain their buildings now and into the future. Contact H&H Coatings, A.J. Hulman and Brad Hafner, hhcoatingsllc@gmail.com, 715-216-7868; and Schweitzer Spray Coatings, Luke and Linda Schweitzer, info@sspraycoatings.com, 262-305-4249, www.sspraycoatings.com. Above & Left: An aerial view of a metal building exemplifies what a rusty roof looks like before and after Schweitzer Spray Coatings treats it with their solvent-based rubber product. The Schweitzer truck and trailer are parked outside Farmers’ Implement.

40 BC�T May


EYES ON ASSOCIATES By WPVGA Associate Div. President, Casey Kedrowski, Roberts Irrigation

Here we are getting ready for

the “busy” season and tomorrow they are calling for 6-10 inches of snow in Central Wisconsin! Are you kidding me? I’m not sure what else I can really say about that. However, I can tell you that by the time spring actually does decide to show up, it’s going to be welcomed with open arms. With the Milwaukee Brewers starting off their 162-game baseball season 3-0, and today being their first home game, I can almost smell the brats and burgers. Mmmmm! All joking aside, within my travels throughout the state, I’ve been noticing a lot of shiny tractors and other farm equipment on the road

getting ready to make their move. It’s a very welcome sight and a good reminder to watch your speed and to be courteous when trying to get around them. Now, I haven’t been in this industry for as long as many others, but I have heard lots of stories about potatoes being in the ground by this time and dust flying across I-39 making it hard to see. Then I’ve also heard that there is no rush in getting the season started. It truly is amazing the different views and philosophies everyone has in this industry. That’s a good thing! INDUSTRY COMMITMENT Jumping over to one other thing I’ve had on my mind lately, and that’s the

work everyone puts in on different committees and boards within the Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association. From the Associate Division to the Water Task Force and all committees in between, I would like to thank everyone. This industry is more like family than any other I’ve experienced. People really go out of their way to support their friends that they’ve gotten to know through one facet or another. I think that’s cool. I’ve met some people who I can truly call my friends rather than just clients or acquaintances, and I look forward to building more friendships as time goes on. With that, the Spud Seed Classic and the Associate Division Putt-Tato Open golf outings are just a few months away. I should really start dusting off my clubs and trying to remember to not over-swing my Taylor-made. If anyone has any tips, I’m all ears. I look forward to seeing you all down the road. Cheers,

Casey Kedrowski

WPVGA Associate Division President Left: WPVGA Associate Division President Casey Kedrowski says he’s yearning for spring to arrive so he can once again see shiny new machinery like this Versatile 440 DT tracked tractor, available from Sand County Equipment, driving down the road. But the snow just won’t go away! BC�T May 41


NPC News

NPC & Potatoes USA Host PILI Class Potato Industry Leadership Institute participants push industry priorities By Hillary Hutchins, National Potato Council The 2018 Potato Industry Leadership Institute (PILI) class convened in Denver on Wednesday, February 21. Sponsored by Syngenta and Farm Credit, and hosted by the National Potato Council (NPC) and Potatoes USA, PILI brought 18 men and two women together from 11 potatogrowing states for two and a half days of intensive training in Colorado before flying to Washington, D.C. Once in D.C., PILI participants experienced four more 18-hour days of workshops focusing on leadership, presentation skills, media training and advocacy for potatoes in our nation’s capital. Chris Voigt, executive director of the Washington State Potato Commission, extolls the value of PILI in educating people about the potato industry and serving to develop future leaders.

“So, let’s get them young and expose them to all aspects of the industry, give them some skill training and then they’ll be ready to enter those leadership positions,” he suggests.

“What’s great about PILI is that it literally gives you exposure to the entire gamut of the industry. What we hope to accomplish with PILI is to develop the next crop of leadership in the potato industry,” Voigt says.

The week-long journey culminated with attendees joining their respective state organizations for a day on Capitol Hill to meet their senators, representatives and legislative aides, and advocate for

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Above: In all, 18 men and two women from 11 potato-growing states made up the 2018 Potato Industry Leadership Institute class, including Wisconsin’s own Nicolas Bushman (third row, far right) of Bushmans’ Inc., Rosholt, and, standing to Nicolas’ right, Charlie Husnick (blue shirt and orange-and-blue striped tie) of Baginski Farms, Inc., Antigo.

the needs of the potato industry specifically and for agriculture generally. LEADERSHIP ROLES Dave Warsh, of Center, Colorado, served as the PILI grower leader for this year’s class. This was Warsh’s fifth time on a PILI tour, twice as a participant and three times as a grower leader. Warsh says the PILI training serves as a natural progression into leadership roles for many. “As a rule, potato farmers don’t like to be out front,” Warsh proposes. “They don’t like to take leadership roles or roles in meeting with their congressional delegations or state,


local and federal agencies.” “I’d like the class to leave confident that they can make the changes they need to make at home—to get their message out and make their lives better, make their neighborhoods, communities better,” he says. Warsh likened the intensive PILI itinerary to a week of harvest season. “Every day they [the PILI class] start at 7 a.m. and we’re going ’til 9 or 10 at night,” he says. “It’s just like the farm. It’s harvest all over again for one week. Luckily it’s only one week.” PILI began Thursday morning, Feb. 22, at 7 a.m., with breakfast and introductions followed by presentations from John Toaspern, chief marketing officer for Potatoes USA, and John Keeling, executive vice president and CEO of the National Potato Council (NPC). The class then traveled to Colorado City for a tour of the CSS Farms

nuclear seed facility before proceeding to Alamosa, into the heart of the San Luis Valley, Colorado’s major potato production area. On Friday, the class spent the day touring the JW Mumma Native Aquatic Species Restoration Facility, Aspen Produce, Colorado State

Above: Standing from left to right, Pat Kole, Melanie Wickham and Chris Voigt conduct role-playing training with the Potato Industry Leadership Institute class prior to lobbying congressional leaders on Capitol Hill.

University San Luis Valley Research Center, the Idaho Pacific Corporation, Proximity Malt and the Alamosa Solar Generating Project. continued on pg. 44

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NPC News. . . continued from pg. 43

POTATO INDUSTRY ISSUES Saturday morning, they toured the Rio Grande Water Conservation District before returning to the Denver International Airport for their flight to Washington, D.C. PILI participant Paul McCormick, of Bliss, New York, says he learned of issues facing the potato industry during the Colorado tour that he wasn’t aware of previously. From Sunday through Tuesday morning, the class attended a series of workshops focused on interpersonal and presentation skills and media training. Korey Hansen, of Nyssa, Oregon, says the training sessions gave him better insight into his own personality. “It helps me to know how to mesh with other people,” Hansen remarks.

“When I go back to the farm, it’s going to help me identify with people, the way I approach them and ask them to do things. That’s the most important thing I learned, how to deal with people,” he says. One training session was devoted to role-playing when meeting legislators and aides. Warsh, Voigt and Pat

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Kole says that PILI serves as the path forward for the potato industry. “We need to keep a steady group of candidates coming through for leadership positions, and this is the best way of training them,” he relates. “We need new young people to come in and be involved, and PILI does that.”

Karen Warsh, of Denver, found the media training invaluable. “How to better communicate with others— that was a big one for me,” she says. “I’m pretty introverted, so this has really broken me out of my shell and made me more comfortable talking to other people.”

MEDIA TRAINING Following the role-playing workshop, Steve Powell of Solum Consulting led the media training workshops. He says his goal is to train people to become advocates for the potato industry specifically and for agriculture in general.

CONGRESSIONAL VISITS Wednesday morning, with all their training behind them, the PILI class joined their state organizations for a day spent walking the halls of the Senate and House office buildings, meeting with congressmen, senators and aides, and putting to practice all they had learned in the past week.

“When you’re talking about food production, when you’re talking about something that is as emotionally connected to consumers as the food they put on the table for their family, well, we have an emotional side of that story, too, and we’re doing a much better job of conveying that,” Powell says. Powell notes that, even though the media platforms are constantly changing, with greater emphasis on social media sites and apps such as Twitter and Instagram, the story telling remains the same. “Even if some of our spokespeople who have been through this program never have the opportunity to sit down with a newspaper reporter and convey this information or go on camera with a TV reporter, the types of things that they are exposed to and learn in this training work across all of these different platforms,” he says. “It gives you an understanding of how to communicate effectively to get your message across and hopefully get support for what you want,” Britt Raybould says of the media training. Raybould is a PILI alumni and current NPC vice president of government and legislative affairs.

Wednesday evening, the class met at the Old Ebbitt Grill for a final night of storytelling and catching up on what insights they had come away with from their day on the Hill before heading home the following day.

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“Today on Capitol Hill, to be involved in that process can only help to change you,” says Jason Stoddard, of Grace, Idaho. “I had the best time with these people. This has been the best experience for me,” remarks Jason Tillman, of Monte Vista, Colorado. “You guys were an amazing group. You did an awesome job,” Alex Grimm, industry relations manager for Potatoes USA, told the group during the banquet. “Those folks in the leadership program are obviously our future leaders,” says Kam Quarles, NPC vice president of public policy. “I told them they’ll be the best lobbyists we have for the industry and the best advocates to push the priorities of the industry for the future. They jump in with both feet, and it is a lot of fun to watch them grow.”

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BC�T May 45


Badger Beat

Deficit Irrigating Potatoes in a Greenhouse Environment Study evaluated in-season water use and agronomic responses of fresh market potatoes By Yi Wang and Mack Naber, UW-Madison Department of Horticulture

From November 2017 to March 2018, we conducted a greenhouse study to investigate the effects of deficit irrigation on fresh market potatoes. The tested cultivars were W9133-1rus (a new promising variety from the University of Wisconsin breeding program) and Russet Norkotah. The overall objective of the study was to evaluate in-season water use and agronomic responses of the potatoes to imposed deficit irrigation in a greenhouse environment. The greenhouse eliminated the confounding impacts from rainfall, which is often a challenge of deficit irrigation research in Wisconsin. It needs to be pointed out that, in the controlled environment with a 5-pound pot as one plant growing unit, the units of measurement and scale of production are different from what is usually seen in the field, where a single hill is one plant growing unit.

For example, evapotranspiration (ET) values are measured using milliliters, and total yields per pot are between .5 and 2 pounds. For each cultivar, we had two irrigation rates: 1) full irrigation that applied 100 percent ET throughout the growing season and was implemented to fully saturate the soil without drainage; and 2) deficit irrigation that applied 100 percent ET until early tuber bulking (0-50 days after planting [DAP]), 66 percent ET until late tuber bulking (51 -98 DAP), and 33 percent ET until harvest (99-120 DAP). ESTIMATING ET VALUES Daily ET values for each cultivar and irrigation treatment were estimated

by weighing representative pots on two consecutive days before irrigation (ET=day 1 pot weight minus [-] day 2 pot weight plus [+] irrigation amount on day 1). Daily irrigation timing was identical for both cultivars and irrigation rates, with only the length of each irrigation event differing to meet the estimated ET. Each five-pound pot was planted with one seed piece. There were 18 pots under each cultivar and irrigation rate. The soil potting mix used in the study was similar to muck soil. Growing conditions were 77 degrees Fahrenheit (F) daytime/68 degrees F nighttime, and with 16 hours of supplemental lights per day (5 a.m. to 9 p.m.) over the entire season. Irrigation was implemented by a drip tube watering system that brings a small spray of water onto the topsoil in each pot. There were different numbers of drip tubes assigned to pots that are under full irrigation (Figure 1a) and deficit irrigation (Figure 1b), respectively, to control Above: Researchers conducted a greenhouse study to investigate the effects of deficit irrigation on fresh market potatoes. Left: Figure 1: Pots under full irrigation (a) and deficit irrigation (b) have different numbers of drip tubes.

46 BC�T May


the total amount of applied water. Daily ET values of fully irrigated plants are consistently higher than those of deficit-irrigated plants all through the season, for both W9133-1rus and Russet Norkotah (Figures 2a and 2b). Daily ET values of W9133-1rus increased from early season to 77 DAP, and then either leveled off (under full irrigation, orange bars) or decreased (under deficit irrigation, blue bars) until the end of the season. Change of daily ET values for Russet Norkotah were similar to those of W9133-1rus, with the only difference being that the peak values are not achieved until 87 DAP under both irrigation rates. This is suggesting that the peak bulking timing for Russet Norkotah is about 10 days later than W9133-1rus. For both cultivars, we can also see that peak ET values, which indicate peak tuber bulking rates, appear on the same dates under both irrigation rates. The major difference is that once the peaks are achieved, ET values stayed high under full irrigation (meaning full bulking potential) until late season, but they decreased under deficit irrigation (meaning bulking potential is reduced). SEASONAL WATER USE For both cultivars and irrigation rates, our applied water amount always meets the ET requirement throughout the season (Figure 3). On each date, the seasonal

accumulative ET values of W91331rus tend to be higher than the values of Russet Norkotah (Figure 3a vs. Figure 3b). Additionally, seasonal accumulative applied water levels are always higher than the ET requirements for Russet Norkotah, particularly under full irrigation.

Above: Figures 2a and 2b: Daily ET values of W9133-1rus (a) and Russet Norkotah (b) are shown under full irrigation (orange bars) and deficit irrigation (blue bars).

These results suggest that Russet Norkotah uses less water than W9133-1rus from early bulking to the end of the season. continued on pg. 48

Agronomic Responses at Harvest  Full Irrigation Deficit Irrigation Significantly different?

Above Ground Biomass (lb.) 0.67 0.50 YES

% of Total Yield Tubers <6 (lb.) oz.

% of Water Use Tubers >6 Efficiency oz.

Specific Gravity

Stem Number

Tuber Set

1.3 0.8

52% 73%

48% 27%

100% 110%

1.070 1.072

1.4 1.2

5 5

YES

YES

YES

YES

NO

NO

NO

Table 1. Agronomic responses of tubers per pot under full irrigation and deficit irrigation BC�T May 47


Badger Beat. . . continued from pg. 47

The other finding from Figure 3 is that, although we used 100 percent ET minus (-) 66 percent ET minus (-) 33 percent ET, or a gradually reduced deficit irrigation strategy, the seasonal accumulative ET under the deficit irrigation rate is always about 60 percent of the number under the 100 percent ET full irrigation rate. For the agronomic responses shown in Table 1, there were no significant differences between W9133-1rus and Russet Norkotah, so all the numbers presented here were averaged over the two cultivars. Deficit irrigation resulted in an above-ground biomass reduction of 34 percent and a yield reduction of 38 percent, indicating that photosynthesis was slowed down. The yield reduction under deficit irrigation is mainly caused by more tubers that are smaller than 6

ounces. Comparatively, full irrigation produced more tubers that are larger than 6 ounces. However, water use efficiency (total yield/total amount of applied water) under deficit irrigation is 10 percent higher than that under full irrigation. Specific gravity, stem number per plant and tuber set per plant are not significantly different between the two irrigation rates. These results show that deficit irrigation started after early tuber bulking didn’t affect stem number and tuber set, but it significantly reduced vine growth and tuber bulking potential. Here is a summary of major findings from the study so far:

•C  ompared to Russet Norkotah, W9133-1rus reaches its peak bulking stage 10 days earlier, and uses more water from early tuber bulking to the end of the season; • F or the two cultivars, deficit irrigation that was started after the early tuber bulking did not affect the timing of peak bulking, stem number and tuber set, but it can reduce the tuber bulking potential; • T he way deficit irrigation reduced tuber bulking potential is to reduce photosynthesis and produce more small tubers (<6 ounces); Although water use efficiency is improved by 10 percent, the economic benefit of deficit irrigation tested in this study might be hard to justify due to the yield loss of 38 percent.

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48 BC�T May

Above: Figure 3: Seasonal accumulative ET and seasonal accumulative applied water amounts under full irrigation and deficit irrigation of W9133-1rus (a) and Russet Norkotah (b)


Auxiliary News By Devin Zarda, vice president, WPGA

Hello, friends!

It looks like spring is finally attempting to take control from winter here in Northern Wisconsin. Lots has been and will be happening in the world of the Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary, so let’s go ahead and cover all topics. Ladies Night Out Right after my deadline for the last article, we held a second paint and sip down in the Plainfield area. This night was a huge success. We had 27 women show up to paint. Since we thought some people might want to attend both paint-and-sip nights, we did two themes. This time, we painted phrases on barn wood. Based on the feedback we received, I believe we will be doing these events again next year, so don’t worry if you missed this one. You will have a chance to unleash your innerPicasso with us next year! I do want to extend a special thank you to everyone who attended, had a hand in planning or helped host the events. You all are amazing. State Fair Group Leaders Meeting Like we have done in the past, we will be holding our meeting for the State Fair group leaders immediately before our annual banquet. Please keep your eyes open for communication from us with exact details. Annual Meeting and Banquet This year, our annual meeting will be happening at the Elks Club in Antigo. Yes, in Antigo. We recognize that our members are spread out over the state of Wisconsin, so we are aiming to move the location for our annual

meeting and banquet so it’s easier for different people to attend each year. The date for this get-together is June 19. If you’ve never had dinner at the Elks Club, you need to come. They put together a fantastic spread. On top of the fantastic food, we will also be raffling off some amazing prizes. While I can’t say exactly what we are going to be giving away, I know that I would be more than pleased to win any of these items. Don’t worry, we will be sending out more information to you soon. State Fair Workers The Auxiliary would love to extend

Above: Painting phrases on barn board was part of the paint-and-sip fun during a recent Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary “Ladies Night Out,” and there look to be some true artists in the group.

an invitation for all our State Fair workers to attend the banquet. Without each and every one of you, we would not be able to help spread the message of Wisconsin potatoes. As a huge thank you, we would love to see you at the dinner. Watch your mailbox because we will be sending you an invitation as the date gets closer. Talk with you soon,

Devin

BC�T May 49


New Products Reinke Introduces RC10 Remote Management Through water control, monitoring device increases efficiencies and productivity Growers now have a new option to access and manage their irrigation system from anywhere at any time. Reinke introduces RC10, a remote monitoring device providing advanced control options for improved irrigation management and better overall water management. “When we talk with growers about their irrigation system needs, saving time and increasing efficiencies and productivity are often at the top of the list,” says Reinke President Chris Roth. “RC10 is designed to address these needs and more with its ease of use and advanced command and control capabilities.” RC10 is cellular or satellite based, providing 24/7 mobile access from anywhere. Growers can monitor and control their irrigation system using the advanced control features such as sector, end gun and auxiliary programming.

and more from a single mobile web application.

The device is the latest addition to the ReinCloud platform, Reinke’s ag data service. ReinCloud allows growers to manage and monitor their irrigation system, analyze soil moisture data, check the weather

Through the platform, irrigation system data is collected, stored and analyzed for the grower. Growers can organize their operation by property, zone and equipment, making it easier to quickly gain access to control and

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monitor their ag-based equipment. RC10 is housed within Reinke’s patented, double-wall tower box and can be mounted at the main control or end of the system. The device is compatible with most irrigation systems. Reinke RC10 is now available through Reinke dealers. For more information on RC10, visit www.reinke.com. ABOUT REINKE Headquartered in Deshler, Nebraska, Reinke Manufacturing Company, Inc. is one of the world’s most recognized manufacturers of center pivot and lateral move irrigation systems. Since 1954, Reinke has developed products designed to increase agriculture production while providing labor savings and environmental efficiencies. Reinke is a continued leader in industry advancements as the first to incorporate GPS, satellite-based communications and touchscreen panel capabilities into mechanized irrigation system management. For more information on Reinke or to locate a dealership, visit www.reinke.com or call 402-365-7251. continued on pg. 52

50 BC�T May


Top quality, top yield. Yara is committed to helping farmers grow their toppotato with the most comprehensive product portfolio, more than 100 years of local and global knowledge and the latest in digital farming tools. An integral part of the toppotato crop solution is YaraVita PROCOTE , which allows growers to easily and reliably spread an even distribution of micronutrients to their crop for improved plant availability and yield. ÂŽ

For more information contact your local Yara Retailer or Yara North America, Inc. 800-234-9376 www.yara.us

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New Products. . . continued from pg. 50

Spectrum Offers FieldScout Soil Moisture Meter TDR 350 is a must-have tool for potato growers to determine best irrigation strategy Spectrum Technologies, Inc. brings soil measurement technology to potato farmers with the FieldScout® TDR 350. Spectrum uses real-time measurement technology to replace the traditional guesswork and intuition-based decision making for smarter results and healthier field output. Growing potatoes without precise knowledge of soil moisture can be challenging and brings on unnecessary risk. Additionally, soil compaction caused by field machinery traffic is exacerbated in wet soil conditions. Root development is hampered by too much moisture and maximized only when regular tillage operations or field work take place in drier conditions. The TDR 350 is a relevant tool every potato farmer can find useful and affordable in working toward optimal

GPS, no additional components are necessary for wireless connectivity.

soil management. MEASURE SOIL MOISTURE “Historically, the potato farmer would grab a handful of soil or look at his boots to judge moisture level in the soil,” says Mike Thurow, president and CEO of Spectrum Technologies.

The large-capacity data logger can record approximately 50,000 measurements with GPS coordinates. Data records can be saved to a USB stick, or sent via Bluetooth connection to a smartphone or tablet using the FieldScout® Pro Mobile App.

“The TDR 350 provides farmers with an objective and consistent way to measure soil moisture, and to determine the best strategy for irrigation tillage, fertilizer application and planting operations,” Thurow adds.

Field readings are available in real-time by using the TDR 350 in conjunction with the FieldScout® Pro Mobile App and SpecConnect. Spectrum Technologies was founded in 1987 and is headquartered in Aurora, Illinois. Spectrum is a leader in providing advanced agriculture, horticulture and turf technologies to customers worldwide.

TDR 350’s ergonomic design allows potato farmers to easily and rapidly take measurements in various soil environments with increased accuracy to capture soil Volumetric Water Content (VWC), Electrical Conductivity (EC) and surface temperature. With integrated Bluetooth and internal

Spectrum Technologies brands include WatchDog®, FieldScout®, WaterScout®, DataScout®, LightScout®, TruFirm® and SpecConnect™. Spectrum has 24 AE50 Awards from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, which demonstrates the company’s deep commitment to innovation and quality. For more information, call 800-248-8873 or visit www.specmeters.com.

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

Jul-16

Aug-16

Sep-16

Oct-16

Nov-16

Dec-16

Jan-17

Feb-17

Mar-17

Apr-17

May-17

Jun-17

Year-to-Date

CWT

1,596,377.06

706,549.4

1,283,527.92

2,874,985.48

3,531,201.37

1,995,664.44

3,035,619.25

2,285,371.71

2,515,966.21

19,825,262.84

Assessment

$96,214.65

$46,392.12

$87,862.17

$200,067.53

$246,554.05

$139,662.51

$212,457.84

$160,044.60

$175,977.76

$1,365,233.23

Jul-17

Aug-17

Sep-17

Oct-17

Nov-17

Dec-17

Jan-18

Feb-18

Mar-18

Month

Apr-18

May-18

Jun-18

Year-to-Date

CWT

1,396,699.63

728,925.87

1,091,193.52

2,115,859.48

3,758,248.10

1,577,177.03

2,869,518.15

1,938,094.28

1,676,991.72

17,152,707.78

Assessment

$97,708.18

$51,117.39

$76,383.31

$148,116.2

$263,042.39

$110,407.00

$200,922.03

$135,724.59

117,359.95

$1,200,781.04

52 BC�T May


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 • 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

GOLD RUSH SPONSOR $1,500 • 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

MAIL PAYMENT TO: WSPIA, P.O. Box 173 Antigo, WI 54409

SUPERIOR SPONSOR $500

• 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

OCCUPIED HOLE SPONSOR $300 • Company name on hole sign • Rights to occupy a hole on the course and provide giveaways* *If alcohol is being served, it must be purchased through the golf course • Verbal recognition and name on sign at event

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

Since 1998, this tournament raised over $85,000, which was donated to Wisconsin potato research. BC�T May 53


New Produce Safety Rule Has Many Exemptions Potatoes and vegetables defined as “rarely consumed in their raw state” are exempt By Robert J. Reinertson, attorney, business law and litigation, Ruder Ware For the better part of a decade, agricultural producers have been hearing about and complying with, or not complying with, the federal Food Safety and Modernization Act (FSMA). This law, which became effective in 2011, was in reaction to several incidents of illnesses traced to contaminated food. What may not be as widely known is that the FSMA directed the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to adopt a series of administrative rules to implement and enforce the law.

holding of vegetables and fruits grown for human consumption. STANDARDS & SAFE PRACTICES These standards and safe practices apply to the handling, application and supervision of the use of water; the use of manure and other substances added to soil to improve growing conditions or water retention; the proximity of domesticated and wild animals to produce destined for human consumption; worker hygiene and training; and equipment tools and building sanitation.

The most recent of these rules, the Produce Safety Rule, became effective for large farms on January 26, 2018.

The farms that are now subject to the new rule are those with average annual produce sales of more than $500,000 during the previous threeyear period.

The Produce Safety Rule sets minimum standards, based on scientific evidence, for the safe growing, harvesting, packing and

On January 28, 2019, farms with three-year average annual produce sales of more than $250,000 to $500,000 become subject to the

54 BC�T May

Produce Safety Rule. And, on January 27, 2020, farms with three-year average annual produce sales of more than $25,000 to $250,000 must comply. The requirements of the new rule are complicated, and compliance can be tricky. It is recommended that producers seek technical expertise to assist them in implementing procedures for meeting the required standards. However, there is also confusion over the reach of the new Produce Safety Rule and who it covers. It may be surprising to learn what and who is not subject to the new rule, including: Above: Peas, such as those shown growing in a field here, do not fall under the exemptions to the new Produce Safety Rule, unless the farm itself is exempt for one or more reasons outlined in the requirement standards.


1. Produce that is not raw or not in its natural state 2. Produce that is rarely consumed in its raw state The FDA has identified the following produce as not being subject to the rule: asparagus; black beans, Great Northern beans, kidney beans, lima beans, navy beans and pinto beans; garden beets; sugar beets; cashews; sour cherries; chickpeas; cocoa beans; coffee beans; collards; sweet corn; cranberries; dates; dill (seeds and weed); eggplants; figs; horseradish; hazelnuts; lentils; okra; peanuts; pecans; peppermint; potatoes; pumpkins; winter squash; sweet potatoes; and water chestnuts. 3. Produce that is grown for personal or on-farm consumption 4. Produce that will undergo commercial processing that adequately reduces microorganisms that cause public health concerns, such as through use of a “kill step,” as long as certain documentation and recordkeeping requirements are met 5. Farms that do not grow, harvest, pack or hold produce 6. Farms with average annual produce sales of $25,000 or less during the previous three-year period 7. A farm can qualify for an exemption if it meets the following criteria and complies with certain labeling, documentation, and recordkeeping requirements: a. It had less than $500,000 in average annual food sales during the previous three-year period, and b. A majority of its food sales are made to: i. the consumer of the food, or ii. a restaurant or retail food establishment that is located

in the same state or Indian reservation as the farm or not more than 275 miles away Farms can lose this exemption if a foodborne illness is linked to the farm or if the FDA determines that it is necessary to protect public health. The FDA must first give notice to the farm, consider alternative actions and provide an opportunity for a response or corrective measures.

Above: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has identified certain vegetables as not being subject to the Produce Safety Rule, at least one of which— potatoes—is shown here, but others in the image are not exempt. Bob Reinertson of Ruder Ware, who practices business law and litigation, works with agriculture clients on matters relating to OSHA, as well as on environmental issues facing farms.

The FDA has published guidance and other documents that help to explain the new Produce Safety Rule and provide information on compliance. The FDA also has been implementing various ways to provide or arrange to provide training and technical assistance to producers. More information can be found at www.fda.gov/FSMA. As indicated above, the new Produce Safety Rule doesn’t apply to growers of potatoes and many other vegetables, and many producers do not need to comply under one or more of the other exemptions. This does not mean, of course, that those farms do not need to worry about food safety, as it is always vital to consumer confidence and business vitality.

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BC�T May 55


Marketplace

By Dana Rady, WPVGA Director of Promotions & Consumer Education

Growers Stay Proactive with Food Safety In an ever-changing industry, it can be difficult and sometimes seemingly impossible to stay ahead of the game and in front of all the new requirements affecting every aspect of your farms. It can also be hard to adjust once new regulations take effect. The Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association (WPVGA) has worked hard to make all this a bit easier when it comes to food safety classes and audit preparations. 2018 marked six consecutive years of offering food safety classes to Wisconsin’s potato and vegetable growers. It’s a pleasure to finally say that, as a result, the Wisconsin potato industry is officially in the “maintenance phase” of its food safety programming. In other words, thanks to all of you who have devoted the time and resources necessary in sending employees and/or

coming to the training yourselves, you now have the tools and certifications needed to get through an audit successfully on a regular basis. STRATEGIC OFFERINGS This allows the WPVGA to continue offering classes every year, yet also be more strategic in what is being offered specifically, which may also mean making room for other classes depending on if and how the requirements change from here on out. Again, ultimately, this is a good thing! That said, 56 individuals from 33 different growing organizations attended at least one of the offered food safety classes this year. Included in the line-up was Preventive Controls, Produce Safety, HACCP Certification and a PrimusGFS Update to Version 3 class that will be scheduled when the new

version is released. Over the years, Wisconsin has earned a reputation for being a state that understands what being proactive is all about and how to continue doing it. There are plenty of examples of this from many facets of the industry, such as the Healthy Grown program and Wisconsin being known as the “green state,” strong partnerships with researchers from the University of Wisconsin (UW)-Madison and the UW-Extension with regards to variety development and growing practices, and in food safety, to name a few. Thank you for recognizing the importance of attending these classes and maintaining the certifications, and for supporting the WPVGA in offering continuing education opportunities.

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

The varieties that yo

u need.

The early generation that you want.

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

Wisconsin has it!

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

WISCONSIN CERTIFIED SEED POTATOES 56 BC�T May

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

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


Ali's Kitchen Soft, Crumbly Parmesan Potato Rolls are Worth the Time!

Column and photos by Ali Carter, Wisconsin Potato Growers Auxiliary Soft and slightly crumbly, Parmesan Potato Rolls are worth the time investment! If you are new to baking breads, I encourage you to give these rolls a try. The most intimidating part about bread seems to be the yeast. Really, there is no secret process here. Just remember that you need warm water to activate your yeast. Ideally, a water temperature between 110-115 degrees Fahrenheit (F) is ideal. Too cold, and you will be left with yeast too sleepy to raise your bread, and water too hot will kill your yeast and leave you with

a flat, dry bread. If you want to be sure you have the correct water temperature to proof your yeast, a thermometer comes in handy. BOIL UP SOME RUSSETS? You are welcome to boil up some Wisconsin russet potatoes and mash them for this recipe, but I prefer to use boxed instant dehydrated potato flakes. The instant potatoes give the rolls a softer texture and there is no worry over trying to whip up creamy, plain mashed potatoes without the added milk or butter. continued on pg. 58

Soft, Slightly Crumbly Parmesan Potato Rolls 2 (¼-ounce) active dry yeast packets 1 ⅓ cups warm water (divided) 1 cup warm, plain mashed potatoes 2/3 cup sugar 2/3 cup butter (softened and at room temperature) 2 eggs ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese 2 tsp. salt 5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour Parmesan Topping: ½ cup melted butter 2 tsp. garlic powder 1 tsp. parsley ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese BC�T May 57


Advertisers Index

Ali's Kitchen. . . continued from pg. 57

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You simply mix the instant potato flakes with hot water and you’re ready to go.

and a bit of patience while your dough rises.

H&H Roof Coatings........................50 Jay-Mar..........................................15

In the end, you will have soft, buttery, browned dinner rolls that will not disappoint! Enjoy!

J.W. Mattek....................................33

7. Pull portions of this raised dough, shape it into balls and place them into the prepared baking pans. You should be able to get about 40 potato rolls from this dough.

North Central Irrigation.................21

8. Cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and allow the rolls to rise for 30 to 45 minutes, or until rolls are not quite double in size.

Ruder Ware...................................28

9. Preheat oven to 350° F.

Schroeder Brothers Farms...............7

10. Bake rolls for 20 to 25 minutes.

Schweitzer Spray Coatings.............55

11. Toward the end of the baking time, prepare the topping by mixing the melted butter, garlic powder, parsley and grated parmesan cheese in a small bowl. Make sure butter is not too hot or it will melt the cheese and make it difficult to spread.

Swiderski Equipment.....................13

12. Remove pan from the oven and brush tops of rolls with the melted butter/parmesan mixture.

Warner & Warner..........................20

5. Push dough down, re-cover and allow to rest for about 10 minutes. 6. Grease a baking pan (with a pat or two of butter or cooking spray) and set aside.

13. Return to the oven and bake another 5 minutes, or until rolls are golden brown.

There is no kneading involved or fancy equipment required for this recipe, just some basic ingredients DIRECTIONS: 1. In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast in 2/3 cup warm water and set aside. 2. In an extra-large bowl, combine the mashed potatoes with the remaining 2/3 cup water, sugar, softened butter, eggs, cheese and salt. 3. Add the yeast mixture to the bowl, along with about 2 cups flour, and mix until smooth. Continue adding flour to the bowl until you have a soft, slightly sticky dough. You may not need the full 6 cups of flour. 4. Cover the dough with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise until double in size. This will take about an hour.

58 BC�T May

JCP Farms......................................18 Nelson’s Vegetable Storage Systems Inc.....................30 Oasis Irrigation..............................60 Riesterer & Schnell........................22 Roberts Irrigation ............................2 Rural Mutual Insurance.................24 Sand County Equipment................25

Syngenta........................................11 T.I.P................................................43 V&H Inc. Trucks.............................42 Vantage North Central...................37 Volm Companies............................39 WPVGA Putt-Tato Open.................59 WPVGA Spud Seed Classic.............53 WSPIA............................................56 Yara North America.......................51


WPVGA Associate Division 18th Annual Golf Outing & Barbeque

WPVGA Associate Division

Lake Arrowhead Golf Course Nekoosa, Tuesday, July 17, 2018 We will golf rain or shine! REGISTRATION DEADLINE: June 29, 2018

The WPVGA Associate Division will host the 18th Annual Golf Outing at the Lake Arrowhead Golf Course in Nekoosa. The golf outing is followed by a splendid dinner barbeque and raffle prize drawings. The golf format is a four-person scramble with a shotgun start limited to the first 42 foursomes and sign up is a first-come basis, so sign up soon! Don’t miss out! Registration will start at 9:30 a.m. and the scramble will begin with a shotgun start at 10:30 a.m. Cost is $75/person which includes 18 holes of golf with cart. Proper golf etiquette is expected. Lunch is available for all golfers that day courtesy of an associate sponsor. The dinner barbeque is held immediately following golf and is open to everyone in the industry whether you choose to golf or not. Tickets are required. ‘Barbeque only’ ticket price is $15/person. Make checks payable to WPVGA. Please contact Julie Braun, 715-623-7683, if you have any questions.

GRAB ATTENTION! SIGN UP TO BE A SPONSOR Platinum Level Gold Level Silver Level Lunch Sponsor Sponsor A Hole Sponsor A Raffle Prize Call Julie Braun at 715-623-7683 for more details.

You can sponsor a hole for a minimum $200 cash donation. Call Julie Braun, 715-623-7683, for more details.

REGISTRATION DEADLINE: June 29, 2018

❑ Yes! I will golf. I am registering ______ golfers.

Group Leader Name: _____________________________

(Fee for golf only is $75 per person. This does not include barbeque.)

Company Name: _________________________________

❑ I wish to order _______ Barbeque Tickets at $15.00 per ticket.

Address: ________________________________________ City, State, Zip: __________________________________

❑ I would like to sponsor a hole at the golf outing. My donation of $_________ is enclosed.

Phone: __________________________________________ These are the people in my group: 1. ______________________________________________

Golf Fee: Number of Golfers x $75

$_________

Barbeque Tickets: Number of Tickets x $15

$_________

+ Hole Sponsor/Donation

$_________

Total Amount Enclosed:

2. ______________________________________________

$_________

Please return completed form and payment to: WPVGA • P.O. Box 327 • Antigo, WI 54409-0327

3. ______________________________________________


P.O. Box 327 Antigo, WI 54409

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

CHANGE SERVICE REQUESTED

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STRONGEST. STRONGEST.

Technology I Precision Application I Decisions

Design I Dealer Network I Parts & Service

Technology I Precision Application I Decisions

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SMARTEST.

STRONGEST.

Technology I Precision Application I Decisions

Design I Dealer Network I Parts & Service

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.

© 2017 Lindsay. All rights reserved. Zimmatic and FieldNET are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Lindsay Corporation and its subsidiaries.

© 2017 Lindsay. All rights reserved. Zimmatic and FieldNET are trademarks or registered trademarks of the Lindsay Corporation and its subsidiaries.

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IRRIGATION LLC

IRRIGATION LLC IRRIGATION LLC

N6775 5th Avenue Plainfield, WI 54966 IRRIGATION LLC N6775 Avenue N6775 5th5th Avenue Plainfield, WI 54966 Plainfield, WI 54966 715-335-8300 N6775 5th Avenue Plainfield, WI 54966

1805-Badger Common'Tater  

Vegetables & Farm Safety/Insurance Issue touts Wisconsin's "Healthy Grown" program expansion goals--to 100 percent fresh market participatio...

1805-Badger Common'Tater  

Vegetables & Farm Safety/Insurance Issue touts Wisconsin's "Healthy Grown" program expansion goals--to 100 percent fresh market participatio...