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april | may 2017 • vol. 23 no. 2 |

New Face on WFBF Board Page 14

The landscape is changing. We have the roadmap. Successful businesses look forward, not back. That’s why they turn to FS for next generation agronomy and energy solutions. We’re utilizing cloud-based information technology, while providing essential crop inputs and fuel management tools that point the way forward. FS is always discovering new ways to optimize operations and ensure our customers are ready for what’s next. •

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contents vol. 23 no. 2


















32 stay connected


APRIL | MAY 2017


WFBF President Jim Holte testifies in Washington, D.C.


Budget priorities for Wisconsin Farm Bureau members.


See highlights from Ag Day at the Capitol.


Leadership Institute graduates and WFBF Board visit D.C.


See highlights from the March 21 celebration.


Meet newly-elected District 7 Board Director Adam Kuczer.


Columns from Holte, Duvall, Zimmerman and Eckelberg.


More than 200 women came to Madison to network and learn.


Conference for high school juniors brings nearly 200 students.


Are you using the tools in your resource toolbox?


Learn more about first aid kits and crop insurance.



Read our previous issues at





’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “a photo is worth a thousand words.” If that is true, this issue of Rural Route is nothing short of a novel. Most likely a best-seller too. (Insert laughter.) Photos…our society lives by them. These days it’s not uncommon to see someone snapping a photo of his or her food or a selfie by their lonesome in their car. We are a visual society. I won’t deny it, I’m comfortable with that. For me a photo has always done a better job of telling a story than my crafted words ever could. When my grandpa died, I shared a photo of his furry-friend, Rosco, lying next to his empty barn boots to share how I was feeling. One of my favorite photos from my wedding is a photo of my dad and I dancing, but my head is tilted straight back because I am dying of laughter. It perfectly describes our relationship. I find old photos intriguing because the photo shares a short story with me. I’ve been wanting to take a new editor’s note photo for a while now at my family’s farm. You know how it goes though, early

spring time just doesn’t make for a great photo on the farm. This time of year you have mud for days and snow flurries every other. Although I already get picked on for the number of photos I take around the farm, I decided a few weeks ago I was going to try to capture the perfect moment. When we were moving calves to their hutches that Sunday, I made my husband hold my phone and be ready to snap as I waited patiently for the calf to cooperate. I shuffled the calf to where I wanted it to stand but it moved within moments. Meanwhile another calf busted out of the nursery pen and came charging for us. The photo shoot resulted in images of heads and tails with me laughing in the background. The calves made a mockery out of the whole idea. Needless to say, I didn’t get the perfect photo I was looking for. But I did get the one you see to the left and the one on the bottom. To me, both those photos tell the tale of what happened that morning better than I can. In all honesty, they might be better photos than a staged one anyway. I sincerely hope you enjoy the photos in Rural Route. From the event photos, to in-action shots taken on National Ag Day, they really do tell the stories better than myself or anyone else could. Keep smiling for photos and snapping your own. You’ll never know when you’ll get all-four feet off the ground, or your photo landed in the Rural Route. Thanks for reading, Amy Eckelberg Rural Route Editor Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation

Editor Amy Eckelberg 608.828.5706

Designer Lynn Siekmann 608.828.5707

Contributors Sarah Marketon - 608.828.5711 Marian Viney - 608.828.5721

Address of Publication Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation PO Box 5550 1241 John Q. Hammons Dr. Madison, WI 53705-0550 POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation PO Box 5550 Madison, WI 53705-0550

Contact Information 608.836.5575 800.261.FARM (3276)

WFBF Board of Directors Jim Holte, Elk Mound, (President) Don Radtke, Merrill, (Vice President) Dave Daniels, Union Grove Arch Morton Jr., Janesville Richard Gorder, Mineral Point Joe Bragger, Independence Kevin Krentz, Berlin Rosie Lisowe, Chilton Adam Kuczer, Pulaski Rosalie Geiger, Reedsville (Promotion and Education Committee Chair) Derek Husmoen, Galesville (YFA Committee Chair) Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation’s Rural Route (ISSN 39940) (USPS 1082-1368), the official publication of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation, is published six times per year in February|March, April|May, June|July, August|September, October|November and December|January. Subscription of $5 is included in Farm Bureau dues. Periodical postage is paid at Madison, Wisconsin. All rights reserved. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in whole or part without written consent. For advertising rates and information: Wisconsin accounts contact Slack Attack at 608.222.7630 or National accounts contact Casey McNeal at 800.798.2691 ext. 334 or For general inquiries, contact Amy Eckelberg at 608.828.5706 or


Holte Testifies on Endangered Species Reform I n congressional testimony in February, Wisconsin Farm Bureau President Jim Holte, told the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee current Endangered Species Act enforcement fails to provide adequate incentives for species conservation on working lands and, instead, imposes far-reaching regulatory burdens on agriculture. Congress intended for the ESA to protect species from extinction, but even after species have recovered, regulations and litigation often fail to allow them to be removed from protected status. According to Holte, a member of the American Farm Bureau Federation Board of Directors, the law is ripe for reform because it places a priority on keeping species listed rather than carrying out actual work related to recovery and habitat conservation. “Reform of the ESA should include a focus on species recovery and habitat conservation that respects landowners,” Holte told senators. “Coordination with state wildlife agencies to leverage private, incentive-based conservation efforts can better achieve long-term conservation goals.” Holte, a beef and grain farmer from Elk Mound, said that in Wisconsin regulatory action related to one species in particular, the gray wolf, is having adverse effects on many farmers. In addition to sharing statistics about Wisconsin’s wolf population, Holte shared one of many stories about how an attack by the predator species resulted in the gruesome loss of a dairy cow by Medford farmers Ryan and Cheri Klussendorf. As a result, the Klussendorfs now keep their herd within 200

feet of their farmyard at night, and calves are no longer put on pasture. “The costs have been burdensome but the emotional toll and increased stress on the family and animals has been tremendous,” Holte said, noting that the family cannot legally protect their herd with a firearm in the event of a wolf attack. Holte said the Klussendorfs are not the only farmers who have been impacted, and Wisconsin Farm Bureau continues to support the decision to delist the gray wolf and allow state wildlife officials to manage wolf populations. He said interactions among farmers, their livestock, rural residents and wolves continue to escalate “without a remedy in sight.” Holte told the committee that congressional action is needed.

Farm Bureau Groups Help Wildfire Relief Efforts A fter hearing about the tragic wildfires that swept through Kansas, Colorado, Texas and Oklahoma, groups in Wisconsin decided to reach out to their southern neighbors and offer aid. In southeast Wisconsin, the Young Farmer and Agriculturist planning committee for the District 1 Spring Fling decided to donate their profits to wildfire relief efforts. Attendees also passed around cowboy boots at the event for extra donations. More than 350 attendees collected $750 for wildfire relief efforts on March 18. “It was just the right thing to do,” said Ozaukee County YFA co-chair Bob Nash. “They lost everything so we wanted to do anything we could to help out, and the Spring Fling was the perfect opportunity.” In southwestern Wisconsin, a similar effort took shape. YFA members hosted the District 3 Southwest Shindig on April 1 where they set out donation jars for wildfire relief efforts. They collected more than $100 in change and plan to keep adding to it at other Farm Bureau events. The Wisconsin Farm Bureau Board and staff and Rural Mutual Insurance Company Board and staff also made

contributions to wildfire relief efforts. Many other groups across the Midwest have rallied to collect and deliver supplies and hay to farmers impacted by the fires. To see a list of organizations taking donations for wildfire relief efforts, visit

APRIL | MAY 2017


The budget provides an additional $1.65 million SEG during the biennium for cost-sharing nonpoint source abatement projects and other land and water conservation activities performed by counties. Total funding for the program is set at $6.65 million SEG over the biennium, an increase of 24 percent more than base level funding.

A Farm Bureau Look at the

Budget Proposal O

n February 8, Governor Scott Walker delivered his budget proposal. Nearly 1,000 pages in length, it lays out his plan to spend $76 billion in the next two years. Within the budget, a variety of ag-related items are mentioned. Wisconsin Farm Bureau's Governmental Relations team is working with legislators on behalf of the interests of farmers and rural landowners. This is a list of the priority items.

Land and Water Resource Management

The budget maintains funding of $500,000 during the biennium for producer-led watershed grants, but the $500,000 is new general purpose revenues (GPR) funding. The current program was created last budget and funded with segregated revenue (SEG) dollars. Fourteen producer-led watershed protection grants were issued in 2016. The program is widely accepted as an early success among farmers, county conservationists and environmental groups as they continue to research and implement best management practices. The budget provides the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection an additional $7 million in SEGsupported general obligation bonds for grants to county land conservation departments to provide cost sharing to landowners to comply with nonpoint regulations. It expands the use of environmental improvement funds: for additional water quality activities; to redirect more resources towards areas of sensitive surface and groundwater; and to ensure communities are protected and resources are available for water permitting and oversight activities. The budget provides an additional $5.9 million in bonding to the Department of Natural Resources for the targeted runoff management program for nonpoint source pollution bonding and $3 million in bonding to DNR for urban nonpoint costsharing.


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It also requires the department to prioritize the presence of impaired water and agricultural enterprise areas when evaluating nutrient management grant applications to ensure those proposals receive the greatest consideration. Farm Bureau supports land and water resource management practices that benefit conservation efforts and limit nutrient runoff.

Agrichemical Management Fund and Agricultural Chemical Cleanup Program

The budget restructures the agrichemical management fund and agricultural chemical cleanup program to modernize the fee and license structure for pesticides, fertilizers, soil or plant additives and inspections. The restructuring will reduce fees for license and permit holders, and provide opportunities for fee holidays when the fund balance in the program reaches a certain threshold. It also increases the cap on the lifetime reimbursement for cleanup awards under ACCP from $400,000 to $650,000. As committed in past budgets, this restructuring will help prevent raids of the programs’ revenues to fund other programs. Farm Bureau supports modernizing the fee and license structure of these programs.

Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations

Directs DATCP and DNR to conduct a study on the feasibility of transferring the permitting process for concentrated animal feeding operations from DNR to DATCP. This is only a study, it is not directing or taking a position as to whether a transfer should take place. Transfers four full-time employee positions from other natural resources activities to support water quality management activities, including additional support for the CAFO program. This will provide an additional $282,000 SEG in each year of the biennium. Farm Bureau supports these proposals.


Education and Broadband

In total, $648.9 million in additional state aid is invested into K-12 public education. This includes a $604 per pupil categorical increase during the biennium - $200 per pupil in 2017-18 school year and $404 in 2018-19 school year. The budget increases High Cost Transportation Aid by 69 percent, totaling $25.4 million during the biennium. It increases Sparsity Aid from $300 per pupil to $400 per pupil and a second tier for schools between 746 and 1,000 pupils of $100 per pupil will be created. This is a 56 percent increase from fiscal year 2016 to fiscal year 2017. The budget continues and expands broadband funding and access through transfers in cash balances to the Public Service Commission and the Department of Administration’s Technology for Educational Achievement Program. It also makes statutory changes to eliminate permit fees that the Department of Transportation and DNR may impose for appraisal and easement work. This investment represents a $34.5 million increase for broadband programs during the biennium. A total of $52 million is being proposed to expand rural broadband access to unserved and underserved areas in the state. Farm Bureau supports increased funding to rural schools and expanded broadband coverage for rural Wisconsin.


The budget puts more money into rural roads, but alternatively, there is still no long-term, sustainable transportation funding solution. No tax or fee increases are offered to increase transportation fund revenues. The Governor is proposing $500 million in bonding resulting in debt service payments approaching 25 percent on the transportation fund. For the 2017-19 biennium, local governments will receive an increase of more than $76.9 million in state aid from the combined increases in general transportation aids, local road

improvement program payments and state-funded local bridge improvement assistance program payments. This is a biennial increase of more than $56.9 million to general transportation aid, $14 million of local road improvement program payments and more than $6 million to the state-funded local bridge improvement assistance program payments. This is an increase of 8.4 percent compared with the prior biennium for these three programs. Farm Bureau supports this position as a starting point but believes more rural road and bridge funding is needed.

Farm-to-School Program and Farm-toSchool Advisory Council

The budget eliminates the Farm-to-School Program and the Farm-to-School Advisory Council. The Farm to School Program “encompasses efforts that bring local or regionally produced foods into school cafeterias and classrooms; handson learning activities such as school gardening, farm visit, and culinary classes; and the integration of food-related education into classroom curriculum." The budget eliminates the one and only full-time staff position at $66,400 annually. Farm Bureau supports maintaining the one full-time staff position to oversee the program.

Livestock Premise Registration

The budget maintains current funding at $250,000 per year for livestock premise registration. The law requires anyone who keeps, houses or co-mingles livestock to register their premises. The non-profit Wisconsin Livestock Identification Consortium was established to develop and maintain a livestock premise registration system to protect animal health and market access. Farm Bureau supports the livestock premise registration program and is working to ensure WLIC is appropriately funded.

Non-Budgetary Legislative Issues High Capacity Wells – Senate Bill 76 and Assembly Bill 105 (authored by Senator Scott Fitzgerald and Representative Gary Tauchen) specifically address laws and the permitting process for existing wells, not new well permits. These companion bills allow owners of current wells to repair, reconstruct, replace or transfer ownership of a well without additional approval from the DNR. It also requires DNR to study the hydrology of specific waterbodies in the Central Sands and report those findings to the Legislature within three years of the bills’ passage.

Fishing for our Future Act – Senate Bill 95 and Assembly Bill 160 (authored by Senator Tom Tiffany and Representative Mary Felzkowski) make several common-sense changes for aquaculture and fish farmers to bring more consistency and predictability in the regulation of Wisconsin fish farms. This multi-million-dollar industry supplies live bait to tackle shops, stocks our lakes and rivers, supplies grocery stores with locallygrown fish and supports the sport fishing industry throughout the state. Farm Bureau supports these legislative issues.

APRIL | MAY 2017


Ag Day at the Capitol

Brings Farmers to Madison



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1. B  efore walking to the Capitol, attendees enjoyed lunch and received updates on current agricultural issues and legislation. 2. S  tate Representative Warren Petryk welcomed constituents from northwestern Wisconsin to his office. 3. J uneau County Farm Bureau members enjoyed time with Senator Howard Marklein as they discussed agricultural issues that affect them and their farms. 4. Thank you to the Ag Day at the Capitol sponsors. 5. G  overnor Scott Walker was the keynote speaker at Ag Day at the Capitol. He spoke about his 2017-19 Biennial Budget proposal and how it will benefit Wisconsin’s rural communities. 6. B  y mid-afternoon, Ag Day at the Capitol attendees walked to meet with legislators about issues affecting their farms and Wisconsin agriculture. 7. M  embers of Sawyer and Rusk County Farm Bureaus posed for a picture after meeting with Senator Jerry Petrowski. 8. B  arron County Farm Bureau president Karyn Schauf and Dunn County Farm Bureau President Marv Prestrud discussed agricultural issues with Senator Janet Bewley on March 8.


APRIL | MAY 2017


WFBF Board Directors and Institute Class members stood with Senator Tammy Baldwin.

for the WFBF Leadership Institute Class By Marian Viney


hirteen agricultural leaders, along with members of the WFBF Board of Directors, participated in the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation’s Leadership Institute trip to Washington, D.C., to meet with legislators, advocate for agriculture and attend the American Farm Bureau’s Advocacy Conference. Members of the 2016 Farm Bureau Leadership Institute class include: Lauren Brey, Sturgeon Bay; Taliah Danzinger, Durand; Kristy Erickson, Clintonville; Matt Graff, Waupun; Derek Husmoen, Galesville; Emily Johnson, Janesville; Ryan Klussendorf, Medford; Kenneth Levzow, Rio; Derek Sedlacek, Mishicot; Leslie Svacina, Deer Park; Jill Uhe, Janesville; Tammy Wiedenbeck, Lancaster; and Melissa Yates, Merrill.

Conference Teaches Advocacy Prior to becoming lobbyists for a day, the members attended the American Farm Bureau’s Advocacy Conference with the theme ‘Influence. Action. Impact.’ “Attending the AFBF Advocacy Conference was a great opportunity to meet Farm Bureau members from around the country and to learn directly from AFBF staff about issues that are affecting us on our farms, including immigration and the 2018 Farm Bill,” said Lauren Brey, a Door County dairy farmer and director of marketing and research


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for Dairy Business Milk Marketing Cooperative. During the conference, members listened to AFBF President Zippy Duvall as he called for unity in agriculture, saying now is the best opportunity to stay engaged in agriculture policy. Fox News contributor and analyst Juan Williams talked about changing demographic trends and the impact on the political landscape, noting that farmers are going to be working with younger citizens and a more culturally-diverse community. President of the Congressional Management Foundation Brad Fitch shared the best practices of advocacy story-telling, among them are starting

with the want, setting the stage and establishing the stakes. U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt addressed conference attendees and was met with a standing ovation when he announced that President Trump had just issued an executive order to review and then rescind or revise the 2015 Clean Water Act Rule: Definition of Waters of the United States. Institute members also applauded when Fond du Lac County Farm Bureau member Chris Pollack, along with eight other outstanding young leaders, was honored by AFBF as a graduate of the organization’s eighth Partners in Advocacy Leadership class.

Lobbyists for a Day On March 1, it was time for the Institute members to put into action the skills they learned during the Institute and the conference and climb Capitol Hill to meet with Wisconsin’s congressional delegation. Prior to their visits, the members were briefed on the 2018 Farm Bill, immigration reform, wolves and modernization of the Endangered


Ryan Klussendorf met with Ryan McCormack from Congressman Duffy’s office to discuss wolves.

Emily Johnson, Tammy Wiedenbeck, Ryan Klussendorf and Derek Husmoen laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

Species Act, regulatory reform, the with elected officials in his district and DAIRY PRIDE Act and federal research throughout the state. and cooperative extension funding. "Meeting with elected officials on Institute members and WFBF Board Capitol Hill provided the opportunity members met with Representatives Ron to use the information that I learned at Kind, Glenn the Advocacy Grothman Conference and and Mike in the Institute,” Gallagher; the said Husmoen, staff of Paul who is a soil Ryan, Mark conservationist Pocan and for the USDA Sean Duffy; Natural and Senators Resources Tammy Wiedenbeck Tammy Conservation Baldwin and Ron Johnson. Service and farms with his parents. “I also Trempealeau County member saw firsthand, the work that Farm Bureau and Young Farmer and Agriculturist members do to share their ag story.” Committee Chair Derek Husmoen said Grant County member Tammy that he will use the information and Wiedenbeck added that the experience skills to communicate more effectively made her realize the importance of

sharing agriculture’s story because it does make a difference. “It surprises me how many farmers are unaware of the issues going on and the legislation that affects us directly that may get passed,” said Wiedenbeck, who is a livestock marketing consultant for Equity Cooperative Livestock Sales Association. “We need to be involved, stand together and have a voice in our government.” While meeting with ag staffer Ryan McCormack in Congressman Sean Duffy’s office, Taylor County member and fourth-generation dairy farmer from Medford, Ryan Klussendorf provided details about the increasing wolf population in Wisconsin. He told the tale of a gruesome wolf depredation of a cow on his farm six years ago. “This single attack still impacts every

Leadership Institute members visited Mount Vernon while in Washington, D.C.

APRIL | MAY 2017


the WFBF Leadership Institute Program

Trip attendees stood with Senator Ron Johnson after their visit.

also met with National Milk Producers decision we make for our cattle and our Federation to discuss dairy programs for farm management practices continually the 2018 Farm Bill and international revolve around it,” said Klussendorf. trade. Rock County member Emily Johnson In addition to meeting with explained to Senator Ron Johnson that it Wisconsin’s representatives, Institute is important to farmers that the nutrition members laid a wreath at the Tomb of the and farm program portions stay together Unknown Soldier, in the next farm toured George bill because by Washington’s itself, the farm Mount Vernon, the programs would U.S. Capitol and not pass a House enjoyed a night vote. tour of the national “Crop monuments. insurance is an “It was a important risk very humbling management experience standing tool for farmers in front of the and it would Lincoln Memorial be nice to and visiting have privately Mount Vernon,” subsidized said Green Lake crop insurance County member but until we (From left) Joe Bragger, Tammy Wiedenbeck, Matt Graff. can make it Derek Husmoen, Rep. Ron Kind, Richard Each of the affordable to Gorder, Taliah Danzinger and Jim Holte. experiences that farmers, we need the Institute members shared in D.C. crop insurance in the farm bill,” added Johnson, who is a crop insurance associate helped reinforce how they advocate for agriculture and communicate with with Union Bank and Trust. legislators. “I discovered one of the most The Full D.C. Experience important parts of advocating is listening and having conversations with friends, While in Washington, WFBF Board family and colleagues in my own Directors met officials from the U.S. community,” said St. Croix County Department of Agriculture where they member and goat farmer Leslie Svacina, discussed issues pertaining to nutrient “I will continue to use these skills management. They discussed the 2018 advocating for agriculture.” Farm Bill with the House Ag Committee Empowered, these agricultural leaders Democratic staff and the Senate will continue advocating for agriculture Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and sharing their stories. The Leadership and Forestry Republican staff. The group Institute was just the beginning.


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The WFBF Leadership Institute consists of five, multi-day sessions that provide hands-on learning on issues important to agriculture, development of leadership and speaking skills, interaction with Farm Bureau and governmental leaders and staff at the state and national levels and networking with other participants. The first session starts in January and focuses on public speaking, emotional intelligence and personality types. Subsequent sessions focus on media and advocacy training, running effective meetings, the structure and function of Farm Bureau, the workings of local and state government and future national and international ag issues. For more information about the Foundation’s Leadership Institute, please contact Director of Training and Leadership Development Wendy Kannel at wkannel@wfbf. com or visit


National Ag Day #WIAgProud

National Ag Day, March 21, was a day to celebrate agriculture and all it provides. Check out what WFBF did to celebrate!

@mattkarls88 For the first time, Wisconsin Farm Bureau coordinated a live video on Facebook. The panel members were: Chris Pollack (dairy, beef and crop farmer), Lauryn Krentz (livestock nutritionist) and Chuck Prellwitz (crop and strawberry farmer).

@quiet_farmer WFBF members Leslie Svacina (left) and Lynn Dickman (above) took over the WFBF Snapchat and Instagram accounts respectively, to give followers an inside look into what agriculturists do every day.

@Dority Valley Dairy



APRIL | MAY 2017 @Prochnow Family Farms

13 @mikayla.horstman

Meet Board Director ADAM KUCZER By Amy Eckelberg


dam Kuczer may be a new face on the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Board but he isn’t a stranger to the organization. During the 2016 WFBF Annual Meeting Adam was elected as the District 7 board representative. District 7 covers Langlade, Marinette, Oconto, Outagamie, Shawano and Waupaca counties. Adam and his wife Becky joined Farm Bureau in 2002. Adam recalls the day that Shawano County member Daryl Olson signed him up to join Farm Bureau. “I remember when Daryl came by because he stopped by and talked to my mom,” Adam said with a grin. “He asked if I was around and she said I was in the shop but if he was going down there he had to take my lunch with him. My mom gave him my lunch but also my checkbook. Daryl came to see me in the shop and said if you want your lunch, you are going to have to join Farm Bureau.” Adam became the Shawano County Farm Bureau Young Farmer and Agriculturist chair shortly after and eventually went on in partnership with Becky to serve as District 7 YFA representatives. Adam now serves as the vice president for the Shawano County Farm Bureau. The Kuczers raise their five children and replacement heifers on their farm in Pulaski. Prior to heifers, Adam raised steers and helped with his parents’ dairy before the cows were sold in 2007.

The heifer business found the Kuczers when someone reached out to them and asked if raising heifers would be something they might consider. After raising steers for many years, they decided to take the leap and have been managing heifers ever since. They can house a maximum of 270 animals on their farm and usually only have one customer at a time. “I run a bed and breakfast for animals,” Adam said with a smile. “That’s how I can explain it best, especially to the folks in D.C. It makes sense to people that way.” Adam says that raising beef and heifers are similar in some aspects. “We still check the animals every day and keep a close eye on them,” he said. “Your biggest risk is having one client. Even though there is a risk of only having one customer, it’s a steady income and a good fit for us.” The Kuczers work with a nutritionist to manage the animals’ diets and with the owner on guidance for the animals’ health care. While Adam manages the day-today operations, and feeding, Becky does the book work and administers vaccines. The farm doesn’t have any employees but Adam’s dad Tom helps quite frequently. The couple’s 11-yearold son Nicholas also helps where he can. The Kuczers share land with his parents and grow and harvest all the feed for the heifers.

“Getting involved with Farm Bureau is a great way for you to speak up for agriculture.”


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“It’s all about efficiencies on our farm,” explained Adam. “If it has an upfront cost but will be worth it in the long-run, I’m all for it.” The farm also uses various forms of technology especially in managing the crops including auto-steer, variable application of fertilizer, automatic swath control on both spray and plant equipment and GPS mapping of applications and harvest data. Managing the farm, family and Farm Bureau has been somewhat of a learning curve but overall the transition to the WFBF Board has been good. “I was very familiar with Farm Bureau before,” Adam added, “but this has truly opened my eyes to how much extra time the directors put in for the organization.” Adam has worn many hats in Farm Bureau. Besides his YFA involvement, he has served on the Policy Development Committee, Transportation Committee and is a proud Leadership Institute graduate. “Through the Institute, I learned a lot about myself, other

businesses and personality types that I have brought back to my county Farm Bureau, other organizations and even to my relationship with my wife,” Adam said. “I have also learned that I am really not afraid to speak in front of a group of people and when speaking about agriculture or Farm Bureau I speak passionately because I care about it.” Adam’s goal for his upcoming term on Board of Directors are pretty cut and dried. “I’m hoping to bring better policy communication to my district,” Adam said. “I think my counties can work together more efficiently on policy issues and I hope to help with that.” In Adam’s eyes Farm Bureau is worth the commitment because of what it does for the agricultural community. “Getting involved with Farm Bureau is a great way for you to speak up for agriculture,” he said. “Everyone has a different business but it is our collective voice that changes policy and legislation. You also gain experiences and friendships that help you grow yourself and business.” SUBMITTED PHOTO

The Kuczers have five children: Nicholas, 11; Sawyer, 10; Clara and Cadence, 6; and Andrew, 3. APRIL | MAY 2017



Rural Mutual Recognizes Top Agents O n February 17, Rural Mutual Insurance Company recognized their 2016 top-producing agents at their annual Honors and Awards banquet held at the Marriott in Middleton. Daryl Pulsfus (Reedsburg, Capitol District) was named Rural Mutual’s Agent of the Year. Daryl was also recognized as the Company Top Performer in farm lines and was also the commercial lines leader for the Capitol District.

Daryl Pulsfus

Kurt Johnson

Walter Camp


Rookie of the Year honors went to Walter Camp (Minocqua, Lake and Woods District). For the fourth straight year, the District of the Year honors went to the Capitol District, managed by Kurt Johnson. Chuck McDaniel (Big Lakes District) was the company Top Performer in Commercial Lines. Mike Immel (Big Lakes District) was the Company Top Performer in Personal Lines.

Chuck McDaniel




Mike Immel


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Farm Bureau Sets Sights on Membership Growth in 2017 D espite declining farm numbers in Wisconsin, the most common reason people give for not joining Farm Bureau continues to be “no one ever asked me before.” With that in mind, Farm Bureau volunteers across Wisconsin spent the winter contacting friends and neighbors as part of Farm Bureau’s '2x4' membership campaign. Nearly 400 Farm Bureau volunteers took a pledge to sign up two new Farm Bureau members by April 1. To illustrate their commitment to fulfilling their pledge, these volunteers signed their name on one of several wooden 2x4s that have traveled to meetings throughout the state. Through the efforts of these membership volunteers, 694 new members joined Farm Bureau during the 2x4 campaign. Anyone can sign up a new Farm Bureau member, and there are a host of reasons to do so. All Farm Bureau membership volunteers qualify for a $20 cash incentive for every new member signed. That’s right! Even if you’ve never signed a new member before, you can qualify for the cash incentive simply by signing up a friend or neighbor. For a membership application, go to and click on ‘Benefits & Membership’ or call 800.261.FARM to request a supply of membership applications.

Not only does membership growth build the financial strength of Farm Bureau at the state and county level, but increased membership builds Farm Bureau’s influence with legislators and policy makers in Madison and Washington, D.C. Strong county Farm Bureaus depend on a strong and growing base of members who are willing to take part in county programs and provide input regarding issues that face Wisconsin farmers. The Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation ended the 2016 membership year with 46,149 members.

Marketon Named Director of Communications S

arah Marketon has been hired by the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation as its Director of Communications. Marketon will be responsible for managing WFBF’s social media accounts, and video projects. She will also assist in writing, editing and designing content for state Farm Bureau publications and promotional materials. “I am excited to be part of a team that is so passionate about representing farmers on a wide variety of topics. I look forward to working with Wisconsin Farm Bureau members,” Marketon said.

Sarah grew up on her family’s farm near Howard Lake, Minnesota, and is an active member of the swine industry. In 2015, she earned a bachelor's degree in agricultural education -- leadership and communications from the University of Minnesota. She is a Minnesota Farm Bureau member and a past YF&R Discussion Meet contestant. “Sarah’s agricultural background, strong writing skills and passion for educating others makes her uniquely qualified to help us communicate our message,” said Amy Eckelberg, Wisconsin Farm Bureau’s Executive Director of Public Relations. Most recently she served at Wakefield Pork’s Human Resources and Recruitment Specialist. Marketon began her duties with the Farm Bureau on February 6.

APRIL | MAY 2017



Rural Landowners Should Check 2017 Tax Assessments R ural landowners should check their property tax assessments this spring. “Land on Wisconsin farms generally falls into one of five classifications,” explained Paul Zimmerman, Wisconsin Farm Bureau’s Executive Director of Governmental Relations. Agricultural Land is subject to the use value assessment law, and is further classified as Grades 1, 2 or 3, or pastureland. Agricultural Forest is assessed at 50 percent of market value, this is a woodlot located on a parcel also containing Agricultural Land, or wooded land contiguous to a parcel entirely classified as Agricultural Land under the same ownership. Productive Forest Land is a wooded area that does not meet qualifications as Agricultural Forest and is assessed at market value. Undeveloped Land is a classification that encompasses wetlands, swamps and wasteland, all of which are assessed at 50 percent of market value. Other encompasses the farmstead and farm buildings, which are assessed at market value. “Farmers need to be aware of how the various types of land they own are classified in order to determine how assessments apply,” Zimmerman said. “Tax assessment statements for municipalities are typically issued in April and May to notify landowners of changes in

property assessments,” Zimmerman said. “If farmers have questions about their assessments, they should first talk with their assessor. They should also be aware of the appeals process available through their local Board of Review.” The Department of Revenue’s Agricultural Assessment Guide is available at pb061.pdf. Use value assessment of farmland rate for each municipality can be found at DORReports/17useval.pdf. Steps for Checking Property Tax Assessments • Check with the local assessor to make sure land is accurately classified. • Verify that assessments for the property have been accurately applied from the Department of Revenue guidelines. • Compare any market value assessments of property (buildings, woodlots and wasteland) with comparable property in the municipality. • Talk with the assessor over any questions or disagreements. • Go to local board of review if there are disagreements with the assessor. The property taxpayer must notify the board clerk at least 48 hours before the first scheduled meeting of the board. A property owner must go to the board of review if they want to keep their options open to appeal their assessment. By law, the board of review is to meet any time during the 30-day period beginning on the second Monday of May. For more information, visit FAQS/SLF-bor.aspx.

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Leopold Conservation Award® Program Seeks Nominees S

and County Foundation, they have embraced is all the more necessary as Wisconsin Farm Bureau increasing productivity is expected from every Federation, Wisconsin acre," said Jim VandenBrook, Wisconsin Land Milk Marketing Board and and Water Executive Director. Wisconsin Land and Water Applications must be postmarked by August Conservation Association 4, 2017 and mailed to Leopold Conservation are accepting applications Award, c/o Sand County Foundation, 131 W. for the $10,000 Leopold Wilson St., Suite 610, Madison, WI 53711. Conservation Award, Nominations may be submitted on behalf of which honors Wisconsin a landowner, or landowners may nominate farmers who demonstrate themselves. exemplary stewardship and The award will be presented at the WFBF’s (From left) Sand County Foundation President management of natural Annual Meeting in December. Last year's winner Kevin McAleese, Ron Brooks, Zoey Brooks and resources. Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and was Brooks Farms from Waupaca County. Consumer Protection Secretary Ben Brancel. Given in honor of The Leopold Conservation Award in renowned conservationist Aldo Leopold, the Leopold Wisconsin is made possible through the generous support of Conservation Award recognizes extraordinary achievement in the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, Wisconsin Farm Bureau voluntary conservation. It inspires other landowners through Federation, Badgerland Financial, Alliant Energy Foundation, these examples and provides a visible forum where farmers, American Transmission Company, Wisconsin Land and Water ranchers and other private landowners are recognized as Conservation Association, WE Energies Foundation, and conservation leaders. In his influential 1949 book, “A Sand USDA NRCS. County Almanac,” Leopold called for an ethical relationship For complete application information, visit www. between people and the land they own and manage, which he called “an evolutionary possibility and an ecological necessity.” "This prestigious award recognizes Focus on Your Farm While working farms that demonstrate a high We Focus on Your Energy standard of care for their soil, water and livestock. Recipients and finalists for the In 2016, Focus on Energy paid out over Leopold Conservation Award lead by example, and inspire others to continue $1.1 million in energy efficiency the search for better methods of protecting incentives to more than 650 Wisconsin our resources," said Jim Holte, WFBF agribusinesses. President. "The Wisconsin Milk Marketing Save even more in 2017. Install multiple Board supports the environmental technologies at the same time and care, conservation stewardship and receive a bonus worth up to $600. sustainability efforts of the dairy farm Learn more today! families we represent. Through these efforts, Wisconsin's farmers are leading the way toward greater land and soil stewardship and actively seek new technologies that push them toward continual improvement. The Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board is pleased to recognize these farmers by supporting the Leopold Conservation Award," said Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board CEO Chad Vincent. "Leopold Conservation Award nominees show that private land owners can be both profitable in their business and champions 888.947.7828 • of the environment. The stewardship ©2017 Wisconsin Focus on Energy APRIL | MAY 2017


Everyone is lining up for these

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To find a Rural Mutual Insurance Company agent, visit or call 877.219.9550. Members receive a $500 discount on qualified Chevrolet, Buick and GMC models. To qualify for $500 Bonus Cash, individuals must be a Wisconsin Farm Bureau member for at least 30 days.

You can get more information about the services Farm Bureau Financial offers from your local Rural Insurance agent. Learn more at

Take advantage of Farm Bureau Bank’s FDICinsured checking and savings accounts, money market accounts, certificates of deposit, credit cards and vehicle and home loans. Visit

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Farm Bureau members who are agricultural producers and patrons of their local FS cooperative are eligible to receive patronage when patronage is paid.

Save up to 30% on all Grainger catalog items and shipping is free. To order call 608.221.3861 or visit Members qualify for a variety of discounts on Members receive an new purchases. Visit incentive discount to ($300 to $500) when print your certificate and purchasing qualifying Case IH equipment from for details on models and discounts. participating dealers.







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1 Offer available through 5/31/17. Available on most 2016 and 2017 Chevrolet vehicles. Excludes 2016 Equinox L, Colorado 2SA and Spark EV; 2016 Malibu and Traverse L models, Cruze Limited L, Spark, SS and City Express, and 2016 Chevrolet Cruze L model. This offer is not available with some other offers. Only customers who have been active members of an eligible Farm Bureau for a minimum of 30 days will be eligible to receive a certificate. Customers can obtain certificates at Farm Bureau and the FB logo are registered service marks of the American Farm Bureau Federation and are used herein under license by General Motors.












Pollack Graduates from National Leadership Program F

ond du Lac became a father in 2016. “Heidi was two months old when I County traveled to Hawaii as part of the PAL program. Timing wasn’t Farm Bureau perfect, but we dealt with it.” member Chris Pollack also traveled to Brazil as part of the PAL program. Pollack, along “In Brazil, it was interesting to learn how they grow crops with eight other that I had minimal knowledge of, for example, coffee, sugarcane outstanding or grapes and to learn how each crop is harvested,” said Pollack. young leaders, “This trip was challenging but confidence comes from having was honored by experiences that challenge you so the next time it happens you the American are more prepared and relaxed.” Farm Bureau AFBF President Zippy Duvall congratulated the members of Federation as a the class during the graduation ceremony at AFBF’s Advocacy graduate of the Conference. organization’s “I am proud of the work that PAL graduates put into eighth Partners this program,” AFBF President Zippy Duvall said. “They in Advocacy understand that farmers and ranchers need to keep telling our Leadership stories if we want to be at the heart of shaping policies that (From left) Dale Beaty, Chris and Kelly (PAL) class. affect our farms and our nation’s food security.” Pollack, holding daughter Heidi. The agricultural The other graduates of PAL Class 8 include: Jeremy Barron, leaders were recognized during AFBF’s Advocacy Conference Indiana; Jennifer Bergin, Montana; Emily Buck, Ohio; in Washington, D.C. Cameron Edwards, Kentucky; Brian Marshall, Missouri; The purpose of the PAL program is to empower motivated Terisha Driggs McKeighen, Arizona; Derek Sawyer, Kansas; younger members to become top-notch advocates for the and Julie White, Mississippi. industry they love – agriculture, explained Johnna Miller, Pollack and his wife Kelly own Pollack-Vu Dairy, LCC, Director of Advocacy and Media Training for American Farm where they grow corn, alfalfa, soybeans, wheat and canning peas Bureau Federation. in addition to caring for and milking 140 Holsteins. The couple “Chris has grown in that role in several ways,” said Miller. has a daughter Heidi, who is nine months old. “He discovered that he likes creating videos and plans to create For more information, on the PAL program visit videos that help people understand what he does on his dairy programs/pal-partners-in-advocacy-leadership. farm and why. One of his projects talked about how cows have a nutritionist and why that’s important. Chris learned how to speak to non-agricultural audiences without using farm jargon and how to make topics more relatable. For example, he refers to the devices that his cows wear to gauge their health, appetites, etc., as ‘Fitbits.'" Pollack plans on using the leadership and advocacy skills that he learned in a variety of ways at the local, state and national levels. “If another opportunity like PAL presents itself, I will jump at the opportunity to become better prepared to inform legislators about agriculture. I enjoy the challenge of going toe-to-toe with legislators.” Past PAL participants encouraged Pollack to apply because of his state and national discussion meet experience. He applied and found out he was accepted into the program while making wedding plans. “I needed a few more things to do,” laughed The 2017 graduating class is pictured with AFBF President Zippy Duvall. Pollack, who married in the fall of 2015 and


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APRIL | MAY 2017



We’re Not Crying Wolf A Message from Jim Holte


n February 15, I had the honor of testifying in front of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on modernizing the Endangered Species Act in Washington, D.C. I jumped at the chance to explain that enforcement of the ESA imposes far-reaching regulatory burdens on agriculture and fails to effectively set parameters and population goals that focus on species recovery and delisting. It’s nothing new that the large wolf population is a serious issue for farmers and rural residents in northern and central Wisconsin. This issue has been discussed for years and continues to give rural Wisconsin heartburn. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has determined that the wolf population is nearly three times the size of the state management


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recommendation of 350 wolves. It’s distressing to think of the potential these animals have if the population isn’t controlled soon. Wisconsin Farm Bureau was asked to provide some insight at this hearing because of our past engagement on the wolf issue and our members repeatedly reaching out to their lawmakers. A prime example of how speaking up for agriculture is needed and effective and we must continue to advocate for a change. In 2016, Taylor County Farm Bureau member Ryan Klussendorf provided testimony about his horrific experience with wolves at a summit held in northern Wisconsin. His story struck a chord with lawmakers and other attendees. He shared the heartbreak and frustration he felt when he found one of his dairy cows dead from a wolf attack and how that moment impacts his daily decisions for his farm and family. What a privilege it was to retell Ryan’s tale in a national spotlight and emphasize the other concerns Wisconsin Farm Bureau members have. Ryan’s personal story gave me a way to help visualize the stress that wolves cause rural landowners and the reason reform for the ESA is needed. We know that coordination with state wildlife agencies is an important step in achieving long-term conservation goals. Who better to manage a wolf population than someone located in our state? We had a good thing going for the three seasons our wolf hunting and trapping season lasted. Wisconsin

authorized a wolf hunting and trapping season in April 2012, after the gray wolf was delisted. Six zones were created within the state, each with individual harvest quotas based on various factors. However, the wolf was relisted as endangered in December 2014 because of aggressive animal activists winning a decision reversal in a Washington, D.C. court. The current laws don’t allow farmers to protect their livestock if they are being harmed by wolves. The delisting criteria is so vague that animal rights groups can sue to prevent delisting from happening or reverse other court decisions. As I said in my testimony, reform of the ESA should include a focus on species recovery and habitat conservation that incentivizes landowners to participate. Why not put a vigilant effort into managing and rebuilding these species to get them off the endangered species list? Isn’t that the intended purpose? Wisconsin Farm Bureau will continue to support the decision to delist the gray wolf and allow state wildlife officials to manage wolf populations. Please continue to share your wolf concerns with your lawmakers. Together, we can help resolve this dangerous concern. At some point, they’ll realize we aren’t crying wolf and we need action now. President of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation

since 2012, Holte is a grain and beef farmer from Elk Mound.


How to Win in a Low-Trust World A Message from Zippy Duvall


mericans’ confidence and trust in key institutions is at a historical low, according to a 2016 Gallup poll. Even institutions that have enjoyed high levels of trust in the past, such as churches and schools, have dropped in Americans’ respect and regard over the past 10 years. Others, such as banks, big business and Congress, have struggled for decades to earn the public’s confidence. Their ratings haven’t gotten any better. Against this backdrop of skepticism and lack of trust, there’s at least one group that most Americans still respect and admire. I’m talking about farmers, of course. The Center for Food Integrity tracks public opinion about food. CFI has asked similar questions for years now, and— year after year—consumers rate farmers highly as people they most trust on food issues. On a scale of 0-10, 53 percent of consumers rate farmers 8-10. Forty-two percent give us a grade of 4-7. That’s a lot of faith in the work we do. But we can do better. We tend to think of growing, processing, selling and eating as different businesses, but the average person does not. It’s the 'system,' they are told, that has left too many Americans fat or malnourished or food insecure, and it’s the system that has to be fixed. Farmers and ranchers tend to get lumped in with all of it. Here are other numbers from the CFI survey that should make us take notice. • Even though food has never been as affordable as it is now, two-thirds of Americans say they are very concerned about food prices. • Sixty-eight percent of people surveyed say they are very concerned about food safety. • Just over half of those polled are very concerned about the sustainability of

U.S. farming. •F  ifty-eight percent are very concerned that animals may not always be treated humanely on farms and ranches. •F  orty-two percent of Americans say they are concerned about the number of immigrant workers here in violation of U.S. law. •E  ighty percent of Americans want to know more about farming. •A  n amazing 95 percent of 'foodies'— the 15 percent of the population who have a deep interest in the food they eat and how it is produced—say they want to know more about what we do. I hope those numbers got your attention, because they show us where we have opportunities to build trust. You might think more facts will convince people who don’t trust farmers. But farming is as emotionally charged as anything else people talk about. What the average American wants to know is that we care —for our land, our animals, our workers—and for them. You and I know that is already the case. We just have to show it more. I know some farmers and ranchers don’t necessarily want to let 'outsiders' in. Critical 'news' stories on television or misleading comments from the Dr. Ozes out there don’t help our cause or give us farmers much trust in the media. But we cannot hide our light under a bushel. We must use all communication channels available to help consumers understand that we care about our land, water and air, and that today’s agriculture is more sustainable than ever. There are so many ways to engage. Talk with editors and reporters with your local newspapers. Send letters to media outlets, both when they get the story wrong and when they get it right. Give tours of your farm or ranch. Participate in fairs and community events.

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Farm Bureau programs can help. The Women’s Leadership and Promotion and Education committees provide training and opportunities to advocate for farming and ranching. The Young Farmers & Ranchers program, where I got my start in Farm Bureau years ago, gives young agriculturalists the tools they need to be advocates and ag leaders. Our 'engage' action center makes it easy to weigh in with members of Congress on important legislation. Whatever you can do, it will make a big difference. The important thing is to decide to do it—to get outside our fencerows and spread the word that farmers and ranchers value the same things the rest of America cares about. We have to let our commitment and love for what we do shine through. That’s how we maintain trust in farmers and ranchers, even as trust in other parts of our society seems to be in short supply. President of the American Farm Bureau Federation, Duvall raises beef cattle, hay and poultry in Greshamville, Georgia.



Speaking Up Together Draws Attention A Message from Paul Zimmerman


arch proved to be a great month for agricultural representation at the state Capitol. Ag Day at the Capitol and a hearing on high capacity well legislation brought farmers and agriculturists far and wide to Madison to have their voices heard. On March 8, Ag Day at the Capitol brought 400 ‘aggies’ together. A few observations about the event were prominent. Ag Day at the Capitol is not just a Farm Bureau event, but rather a joint effort and truly a showcase of the agricultural community coming together as one voice. Together with major sponsors Rural Mutual Insurance Company and FS GROWMARK, the event is hosted by 11 Wisconsin organizations: Cattlemen’s Association, Pork Association, Soybean Association, Corn Growers Association, Cranberry Growers Association, Potato and Vegetable Growers Association, Horse Council, Women in Agriculture, Dairy Business Association, Professional


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Dairy Producers of Wisconsin and Farm Bureau. When these groups come together it draws attention from lawmakers and makes them lean in with a listening ear. If you want even more proof that this event is special, Governor Scott Walker was at this event to address the crowd. Spending more than 30 minutes with us, he emphasized the importance of agriculture to Wisconsin’s economy. He highlighted numerous items in the state budget important to agriculture and rural Wisconsin that include increased funding for local roads, greater broadband access, K-12 education and the University of Wisconsin. He also addressed cost sharing to install best management practices, reform of the fee structure for the agrichemical management fund and the agricultural chemical cleanup program and increased staffing for the concentrated animal feeding operation permitting program at the Department of Natural Resources. What a powerful image it was as members from 11 organizations walked to the Capitol that afternoon. Together they walked to meet with their state senators and state representatives to talk about legislative issues affecting their farms and businesses. I cannot stress enough what this unity shows to our elected officials and their staff. With Ag Day at the Capitol in the books, a similar joint-effort was repeated during a public hearing on March 15 held by the Senate Committee on Regulatory Reform and Labor and the Assembly Agriculture Committee. The hearing was about high capacity well legislation. Senate Bill 76 and Assembly Bill 105 would allow owners of current high

capacity wells to repair, replace or transfer ownership without additional approval from the DNR. This legislation has been a priority of the agricultural organizations since 2011 when the State Supreme Court ruled in the Lake Beulah case. More than 300 attended the hearing. Usually with a large attendance agriculture is easily outnumbered, but that was not the case. About 150 people registered support for the bills and 20 also testified in support of the legislation, including WFBF President Jim Holte. While approximately 100 peopled registered in opposition to the bills and 40 people testified against the legislation. In total, more than 170 farmers and agriculturists were included in the hearing record supporting the legislation while about 140 people were recorded on the opposing side. Talk about a job well done. While legislators debate the state budget, high capacity well legislation and other bills impacting agriculture, they know you care because you showed up in droves at the state Capitol twice within a week’s time. If you couldn’t attend those events, no problem. You can still help. If you visit the Wisconsin Legislature’s website ( you can find your state senator and state representative by entering your address. Please contact them about legislative issues important to your farm because you too can make a difference. When we speak up together, we are heard loud and clear. Zimmerman is WFBF’s Executive Director of Governmental Relations.


Renewable Fuels Talk Floats Grains Guest Column by AgriVisor’s Joe Camp


arch is usually a month that gives little fresh news for grain traders to talk about. This past March was different with the winter doldrums interrupted by a juicy piece of rumor about changes being made to Renewable Fuel Standards (RFS). Billionaire activist-investor and Trump-advisor Carl Icahn submitted a proposal that along with input from other key industry players foreshadowed three policy adjustments possibly forthcoming: a change of parties obligated to comply with RFS, removal of the ban on E-15 ethanol sales during the summer and the implementation of a revised biodiesel blend credit. Icahn is the leading champion on the request to change the point of obligation for compliance from the refiner to the blender. One of the proponent arguments is that some oil refineries, like the one Icahn has controlling interest in, are not involved in the downstream blending and therefore complying with RFS regulation is an undue cost. Opponents complain that there is yet little guidance on which entities would be a newly-obligated party and how changes would be implemented. Needless to say, the proposal to shift compliance obligations is contentious; however, this piece of the rumored threeprong adjustment to RFS is likely to have the smallest long-term impact on our ag markets. Whoever the regulatory burdens

of compliance are with officially, the associated costs will be passed onto the consumer as they are now. A waiver for emission regulations that prohibit the sale of E-15 blend ethanol during the summer months is a potential game changer for markets. Year-round offering of E-15 is thought likely to improve consumer acceptance of the higher blends over time, eventually paving way for a potential upward revision to the blending mandate and the use of more corn. Implementation of a U.S.-only biodiesel credit could be friendly to the soy market. Biodiesel blenders have used a $1 per gallon tax incentive in the past, but the credit was also applied to production using imported inputs, the bulk coming from Argentina. The U.S.-only blend requirement would be expected to curb imports and support demand for U.S. soyoil. The other shoe is yet to drop as far as confirmation that the above changes to RFS will be made. In March, markets rallied when these rumors began swirling, but grain futures fell quickly from their highs after it was reported that the White House was denying that it had the intention of issuing an executive order to make the point of obligation switch. One thing for sure, the RFS news was not just run of the mill market news. With industry leaders in regular talks on

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the subject with White House officials, action will probably be taken toward at least some minor changes to RFS implantation in the coming months. The RFS talk is another example in a long line of instances when the market has been impacted by talk of policy change coming from the White House. With it being a handful of months since the new administration has started, we are pressed to think that the next four to eight years will feature some excitement for market participants.

Camp is the Risk Management Specialist for AgriVisor, one of WFBF’s member benefits.



Together We Are Strong A Message from Amy Eckelberg


specifically remember an afternoon during my childhood where neighbors, including my family, came together. A neighbor had been hurt on the farm and could not harvest his crops. While most of the men took to the fields, the women gathered in the kitchen to make food for the crew. My job was to baby-sit the miscellaneous children for the afternoon. Even though I was a small piece of the helping puzzle, I remember feeling proud to be there and to be a part of the efforts. We left knowing we had helped a neighbor in need and that moment of aid

was engraved in my memory forever. I never realized this until much later, but this type of helping hand is common in the agricultural world. Farmers, neighbors and agriculturists show up with arms open and hands ready when injuries or, heaven forbid, a death happen. Most recently we have seen horrid photos and stories from Oklahoma, Texas, Kansas and Colorado. Graphic images of cattle charred on the ground. Those stick with you, especially if you have ever cared for livestock of your own. Out of this deep despair however, once again the ag community has come together to provide relief and support. Trailer-loads of hay and other supplies have made their way to the farmers who have lost livestock, plenty from right here in Wisconsin. We don’t know these people from Adam, but we are willing to help and provide relief with no questions asked. Within hours there were ways to donate or provide monetary support to these farmers and ranchers in need. I’ve lost count of how many loads of hay and other supplies that I’ve heard leaving Wisconsin. Helping hands and caring hearts are something the ag community specializes in, but why is it so much more so when a

problem or tragedy happens? Call me cynical, but what would our industry look like if we always had that much respect and love for one another? There’s been times when a small farmer bashed a large farmer, a conventional farmer attacked an organic farmer or even one commodity criticized another commodity (and vice versa). I’ve heard it all. I understand there’s going to be times when opinions differ, but does that mean that we can’t at the end of the day still respect one another for the hard work we put in feeding our communities? I don’t mean to call attention away from the heartwarming efforts making their way to the states and farmers in need. I just know that at some point we have all had something to say about someone else in the ag community. All I ask is that we think twice before putting another farmer or organization down. Think about the momentum we would have if we kept the support for each other in good times and bad. Together we are strong but I fear that our strength only shows when a tragedy strikes. Eckelberg is WFBF’s Executive Director of Public Relations.

Want to donate to wildfire relief efforts? Visit to see a full list of organizations taking donations.


Up the Creek A column by Ken M. Blomberg

as I can remember. In the late 1950s, our parents brought home a black Labrador Retriever puppy named Raven. In the 1960s, Ginger, an Irish Terrier rescue from the local dog pound graced our home. In the 1970s, I left the nest and began raising German Shorthaired Pointers on my own. To this day, that breed of gun dog still resides in our home and kennels. To round out our canine history, we added field-bred English Cocker Spaniels to the mix six years ago. The boss and I, our two sons and now, three grandchildren carry on the “Whoever said you can’t tradition. Raven introduced me to the buy happiness forgot mystery of woods and fields and as a young lad, BB gun in hand, little puppies.” I followed her along the edge of cornfields and woodlots. Rabbits hose words–from the late, great and pheasants were in little outdoor writer Gene Hill–ring true danger, but we were hunting. once again these days along the creek. Ginger was not much of a hunter, This past week we placed another fine but she enjoyed litter of field bred accompanying English Cocker her teenage Spaniels with master in the families in-state squirrel woods and out-of-state. just the same. Gene Hill wrote The German about many things pointers, too outdoors, but was numerous to most insightful mention, made when he discussed me the bird puppies and gun hunter I am dogs. “I like them today. My first all–pointers, setters, puppy, named retrievers, spaniels– Buck, resided what have you. with me in a I’ve had good ones dormitory hall and bad of several named Knutzen kinds. Most of the in 1974. As I bad ones were my recall with a smile, he was a big fault and most of the good ones would have been good under any circumstances.” hit with the college girls. He was however, not so welcome by the And he knew the thrill of puppies. dorm director. He and I received Our family has known the delight of puppies for several generations. They have an early discharge from campus living. Fast forward to 2017 and been a large part of our lives for as long


meet Finn. A ninth-generation product of Buck, he lives with our family in the house. In 2010, we purchased English Cocker Buster, who is my current constant sidekick. When I joined the Farm Bureau years ago, it was longtime friend and county Farm Bureau officer Leonard Wiza who convinced me that our rural kennel operation more than qualified me for membership. He said, “I raise cows, you raise dogs. My animals are just bigger and eat more.” I’ve been a member ever since. Our kennel business includes the sale of puppies. This year’s spring litter were cocker spaniels– thanks to proud father Buster and one of his wives, Belle. Neighbors Trenton and Peyton–my kennel boys–cleaned out the whelping box for the last time this time around. Five, eight-week-old pups had traveled to their new families–two, all the way to Kansas. Sharing our puppies with other like-minded folks brings us great satisfaction. I cannot imagine life without owning a dog or two. I’ll leave you with more Gene Hill words of wisdom on dog ownership. “No one can fully understand the meaning of love unless he’s owned a dog. A dog can show you more honest affection with a flick of his tail than a man can gather through a lifetime of handshakes.” Blomberg is a freelance writer and a member of the Portage County Farm Bureau.



Farm Bureau


Recipes and photos courtesy of Wisconsin Farm Bureau staff

Wisconsin Cheesy Chicken from Katie Mattison Ingredients Instructions • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves • 1 Tbsp. olive oil • ¼ tsp. white pepper • ¼ tsp. kosher salt • 4 oz. grated or crumbled cheese (I like blue or Roquefort) • 1 clove garlic, minced • 8 oz. sour cream • ¼ c. parsley, chopped

1. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. 2. In a large skillet, over medium-high heat, sauté the chicken in olive oil until browned on all sides, set aside. Reduce heat to medium, add garlic, cheese and sour cream to the pan. 3. Stir constantly to incorporate the drippings to the sauce. 4. W hen the cheese is melted, return the chicken to the sauce, reduce heat to low. Continue cooking for 5 minutes, until the chicken is cooked throughout. 5. Serve over a bed of cooked linguini or angel hair pasta, cooked according to package instructions, and lightly tossed with basil infused olive oil (if desired). 6. Garnish the chicken and pasta with chopped parsley.

Slow Cooker Chicken Chili

from Becky Hibicki Ingredients


• 2 (14 oz.) cans petite diced tomatoes, drained 1. Put everything, except the • 2 (7-8 oz.) cans tomato sauce cream cheese in a crock • 2 lb. skinless chicken breasts pot and cook for 6 hours • 1 c. chicken broth on low or 3 hours on high. • ½ c. yellow onion, diced 2. Take out chicken, cut up • 1 (14 oz.) can corn or 1 package of frozen corn into bit-size pieces and put • 1 (14 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed back into crock pot. • 1 tsp. salt 3. Add cream cheese until • 1 tsp. dried oregano fully melted. • 1 tsp. chili powder • 1 Tbsp. ground cumin • 1 Tbsp. minced garlic • 4 oz. cream cheese

Creamy Tuscan Garlic Chicken from Melissa Doyle Ingredients Instructions • 1½ lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts, thinly sliced • 2 tbsp. olive oil • 2 c. heavy cream • 1 c. chicken broth • 2 tsp. garlic powder • 2 tsp. Italian seasoning • 1 c. Parmesan cheese • 2 c. spinach, chopped • ½ c. sun-dried tomatoes


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1. In a large skillet add olive oil and cook the chicken on medium high heat for 3-5 minutes on each side or until brown on each side and cooked until no longer pink in center. Remove chicken and set aside on a plate. 2. Add the heavy cream, chicken broth, garlic powder, Italian seasoning and Parmesan cheese. Whisk over medium-high heat until it starts to thicken. 3. Add the spinach and sun-dried tomatoes and let it simmer until the spinach starts to wilt. 4. Place the chicken back in the pan and serve over your favorite pasta.


ggie nswers


Grant County

“My favorite Farm Bureau activity is the Youth Tent at the Grant County Fair. It is a great way for families to have fun and learn about agriculture!”


Monroe County

“My favorite activity is helping at dairy breakfasts because they provide an opportunity to hang out with other members who are helping. It’s also a chance to meet and greet a lot of people who you don’t see often.”

We asked members of the Leadership Institute Class XI: What is your favorite Farm Bureau activity and why?


Calumet County

“My favorite part of Farm Bureau has always been the WFBF Annual Meetings. I’ve always enjoyed spending time learning more about agriculture in the sessions and interacting with other agriculturists. It makes us , our operations and our overall industry stronger.”


Trempealeau County

“My favorite activity is sponsoring showmanship winners at our county fair. It is rewarding to walk through the barns and see our plaques proudly displayed above their animals they worked so hard to train.”

Be a part of the 2018 Institute Class

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Jackson County

“My favorite Farm Bureau activity is our dedication to promotion and education. Through projects in our communities and classrooms, our members help build an awareness of agriculture and appreciation for how food is grown and raised.”


Waushara County

“I like Ag Day at the Capitol. I like being able to talk to our representatives about farm issues.”

Apply Today! /programsevents/ leadership-training-institute Applications due August 15

Discover more about Farm Bureau

Connect with Legislators

Network with other Farm Bureau members

Women’s Summit Grows Leaders, Blossoms Friendships

Above: A panel consisting of Lynn Dickman, runner; Devan Klopfenstein, weight lifter; and Tolea Kamm-Peissig, yoga instructor discussed ways busy women can find time for personal strength.

Above: Wisconsin Farm Bureau Vice President Don Radtke shared with attendees the important role he believes women have in agriculture.

Left: Jane Jenkins Herlong was this year’s keynote speaker. She had attendees laughing and singing along during her opening session 'Bare Feet to High Heels and the Flip Flops in Between' and her closing address 'Don’t Throw Tomatoes at My Field of Dreams.'


Peter Fritsch of Rushing Waters Fisheries led a session on how to prepare and serve Rainbow Trout.


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Casino night had the ladies laughing and meeting other women from across the state.


Mess named 2017 AgVocate of the Year at the Wisconsin Ag Women’s Summit C

arrie Mess of Milford was named the 2017 AgVocate of the Year at the Wisconsin Ag Women’s Summit held March 10 and 11 in Madison. More than 250 women were in attendance to celebrate their role in agriculture at the event, hosted by Badgerland Financial, Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation and UW-Extension. Mess is passionate about showing consumers what dairy farming is like in a fun and engaging manner. Her Facebook page has nearly 40,000 followers with many of her posts reaching more than a million impressions. While her online impact is expansive, she also takes time advocating in person by speaking at conferences, facilitating workshops and participating in a variety of other events. She encourages fellow agriculturists to share their stories and make connections with their customers. “I am absolutely honored to join the strong leaders who have received this award before me,” said Mess. “I am even more honored to be one of the many threads that make up our state’s diverse agricultural tapestry.”

Since 2013, the Wisconsin Ag Women’s Summit has recognized an AgVocate of the Year. This award is given to a woman who actively and positively represents agriculture to both her peers and those outside of the agricultural community. She works to tell agriculture’s story in a professional manner and is seen as a leader and voice for local and state issues and events. Previous AgVocate award winners include: Deb Reinhart (New Holstein), Daphne Holterman (Watertown), Laura Daniels (Cobb), Karyn Schauf (Barron) and Nodji VanWychen (Warrens).

(From Left) Amy Eckelberg, Carrie Mess, Pam Jahnke and Rochelle Schnadt. Pam Jahnke, otherwise known as the Fabulous Farm Babe, sponsored this year's award.

Below Left: Kim Bremmer of Ag Inspirations shared how farming practices, sustainability and advancements in agriculture have captured the public’s attention. Bremmer explained how to talk with consumers about these topics.

Above Right: Sarah Brown Dirkes led a discussion about what American Farm Bureau is doing to get a seat at the tables of food companies, restaurants and retailers to combat the damage being done by anti-agriculture groups. APRIL | MAY 2017


LEADERSHIP The American Farm Bureau Federation FUSION (Farmers United: Skills, Inspiration, Outreach and Networking) Conference was held in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, February 10-13. The event brought together volunteer leaders from the Promotion and Education, Women's Leadership and Young Farmers & Ranchers programs. Participants networked with other Farm Bureau members from around the nation, engaged in breakout sessions related to advocacy, business, communication, leadership and technology and heard from a plethora of keynote speakers who provided inspiration for members to take back to their home states.

Members of the Young Farmer and Agriculturist Committee, Promotion and Education Committee and Collegiate Farm Bureau represented Wisconsin at the FUSION conference. Pictured (from left) Charisse Orth (with Zeeva), Derek Orth, George Mroch, Tammy Wiedenbeck, Katelin Haglund, Julie Wadzinski, Rosalie Geiger, Derek Husmoen, Lauren McCann, Bryce Krull, Katie Roth, Sally Albers and Kelly Wilfert. Not pictured are Tim and Danielle Clark who were members of the AFBF YF&R Committee and Chris Pollack, a graduate of the AFBF Partners in Advocacy Leadership program.

WFBF YFA Chair Derek Husmoen tested his luck with a couple of future Farm Bureau members during the grand finale held at Heinz Field.


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Sally Albers, a member of the UW-River Falls Collegiate Farm Bureau, represented Wisconsin in the AFBF Collegiate Discussion Meet. More than 50 collegiate Farm Bureau members from around the nation competed and discussed topics relating to taxes, natural resources and food labels.

Promotion and Education Committee member Katie Roth was interviewed by AFBF staff about the importance of engaging Farm Bureau members and discussed why she is Farm Bureau Proud.


Because no food should go to waste...

APRIL | MAY 2017


Through our social media channels we asked members to send in farm animal photos and you delivered! Thanks to everyone who sent a photo! Laura Giamattei, Menomonie

Dustin Williams,South Wayne

Krista Dolan, Dodgeville

Terri Hamm, Waupaca

Shannon Boschma, Athens

Send us YOUR Photos

Wisconsin Farm Bureau members live and work with beautiful landscapes and livestock. On this page we highlight those sights and special moments. Please email your best photos (high resolution jpgs, 4x6 inches at 300 dpi) to Due to the high volume of photos we receive, we are unable to publish every photo. Photos sent in may be used in other WFBF publications.


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APRIL | MAY 2017


Choose Our Centennial l C e n Logo ten nia Can you believe it? Wisconsin Farm Bureau will be celebrating its centennial in 2019. As the centennial committee prepares for the celebration, an official logo is needed and we want your help! How do you participate? It’s easy as one, two, three. First, review the three logo options (all options are printed in color AND black and white for your reference since both versions will be used for different projects). Second, fill out the far-left side by writing your name, membership county and the letter of your favorite logo option. Then, cut this page out of the magazine and mail it to the address listed at the bottom of the page. Not wanting to use snail-mail? That’s okay! You can vote online at



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County Kernels YFA Edition YFA Curling – Barron County

YFA Tubing – Taylor County

On February 11, Barron County Farm Bureau Young Farmer and Agriculturist members gathered at the Rice Lake Curling Club for a fun afternoon of curling, pizza and socializing. About 10 members attended.

On February 12, Taylor County Farm Bureau YFA members gathered at Perkinstown Winter Sports area for an afternoon of family-friendly tubing. This annual event has grown as more farmers and agriculturists join their parents on the hill.

YFA Gamblers Game - District 6 and 7

YFA Go-Karting – District 1

A YFA Gamblers Game outing took place on February 18. About 120 YFA members had a blast at the game and enjoyed pizza after at the Green Bay Distillery. The Green Bay Gamblers became the Green Bay Cheese complete with a cheese eating contest between periods.

On January 20, members from District 1 gathered for a night of pizza and go-karting at Veloce Indoor Speedway in Waukesha. About 40 YFA members attended and everyone had a great time.

YFA Distillery Tour – Sauk County

On January 21, eight Sauk County Farm Bureau YFA members attended the Driftless Glen Distillery tour, tasting and lunch event. Before starting the tour attendees were educated on the Renee Olive Oil line the distillery carries (named after one of the co-owners, Renee). The owners chose the Driftless region for their Distillery for its unique combination of temperature, water, soil and weather. The process of distilling corn into a quality spirit takes about four to five days and is complex. The process for each spirit is slightly different. After the tour ended, everyone got five tastings of spirits, ranging from gin, moonshine, vodka, brandy and the young rye. The event ended with lunch overlooking the Baraboo River.

APRIL | MAY 2017


Nearly 200 Attend FFA Farm Forum N

early 200 high school juniors from across Wisconsin attended the Wisconsin Farm Bureau’s FFA Farm Forum in Wisconsin Rapids, February 17-18. “Wisconsin Farm Bureau takes pride in hosting this special event with the FFA to help develop our next generation of agriculture leaders,” said Jim Holte, Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation President. During the two-day event at Hotel Mead in Wisconsin Rapids, FFA members attended workshops on post-high school agricultural opportunities, social media, agricultural advocacy and leadership. Joining Holte as keynote speakers at the event were Mark Holley, Sunrise 7 Meteorologist and Chris and Amy Blakeney, owners of Amazing Grace Family Farm. The Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation sponsors the FFA Farm Forum in cooperation with the Wisconsin Association of FFA. This year’s FFA Farm Forum marks the 45th year the Farm Bureau family of affiliates has sponsored the event for Wisconsin youth.

The FFA Farm Forum is sponsored by 40

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for Farming’s Future (WFB Foundation)


APRIL | MAY 2017



Ag Day

Coloring Contest


Thank you to everyone who participated in the 2017 Wisconsin Ag in the Classroom National Ag Day Coloring contest. We received more than 115 entries this year. You can see the runners-up on the Ag in the Classroom Facebook page (

Maitlyn Mikl from St. Croix County (6 and under winner)

Kelly Maier

from St. Croix County (7-9 winner)

Check Your Toolbox Are you using the tools available to you? Spring is a busy time. Not only is it planting season but it’s also an eventful time for Ag in the Classroom volunteers and educators. As you offer your spring classroom programs, ag days, farm tours and prepare for dairy month and county fairs, make sure that you checked your list of needed resources and supplies.

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Newly-updated 2017 Wisconsin Farm Facts brochure

An Agricultural Career for You (middle and high school), student booklets and educator guides

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Newly-updated 2017 Wisconsin Farm Fact bookmarks This Business Called Agriculture (for third through fifth grade), student booklets and educator guides

2016 World of Corn activity books Soybean Science Kit activities

Ag Mags (colorful agricultural magazines) - There are 20 different issues offered by American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture (AFBFA) and many in Spanish. Large quantities can be ordered directly from AFBFA at

 

My American Farm bookmarks ‘Ag in the Classroom Snapshot’ sheet - You can print county program information on the backside.

Riley Engum

Hands-on activities, for example, circles of the earth bracelet, corn baby, dyeing wool with Kool-Aid and plastic bag ice cream (a complete list of activities is available at

(10-12 winner)

You can order these resources from wisagclassroom. org by using the resource order form, book order form or directly from the AFBFA.

from Eau Claire County


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with Wisconsin Ag in the Classroom Make plans to join Wisconsin Ag in the Classroom for a fun and exciting two-day adventure visiting Wisconsin farms, processors and agricultural businesses.

Who should attend? Educators at all levels Administrators and curriculum directors Career and guidance counselors Ag in the Classroom volunteers 4-H and UW-Extension staff and volunteers Home school parents


Tuesday, July 18, and Wednesday, July 19 The bus will depart from the Comfort Suites (725 Paradise Lane, Johnson Creek) at 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday and 8 a.m. on Wednesday.

I  WIAITC America's Dairyland

See, smell, hear, taste and touch Wisconsin agriculture. Identify and acquire free agricultural-focused education resources from a wide variety of sources. Experience cutting-edge technology and interact with some of the faces of today’s agricultural, food and natural resources industries. Develop activities that apply authentic agricultural examples to teach core curricular concepts in science, social studies, language arts, math and nutrition. Learn about careers available in the agriculture industry, green industry and natural resources.

When and where?


Why attend?

A $50 registration fee includes meals, bus cost, entry fees and snacks. Hotel expense and additional purchases at venues are on your own. A block of rooms is reserved through Wisconsin Ag in the Classroom at the Comfort Suites in Johnson Creek. To make a reservation (ask for the group rate), contact 920.699.2800. Rooms will be held until July 1.

Know a teacher who might be interested? Please share this information with them.

Scholarships Offered for National Conference T he National Ag in the Classroom Conference is an annual conference organized by the National Ag in the Classroom Consortium Leadership and Central Region Planning Committee. This year, the conference will be held June 20-23 at the at the Sheraton Kansas City Crown Center in Kansas City, Missouri. A pre-conference tour is on Tuesday, while the rest of the conference is held Wednesday through Friday. A postconference tour is available on Saturday. Thanks to the generous support of the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation’s Jeanette Poulson Fund, three $500 scholarships are being offered to non-traditional educators and volunteers to help offset the cost of attending the conference. Applications are due May 1 and can be downloaded at under the ‘What’s New’ section. Teachers, volunteers, home school parents, 4-H and UWExtension staff and others interested in agricultural literacy are encouraged to attend. Registration materials, hotel information and other details can be found at

The conference includes a great line-up of speakers, presenters and tours. Wednesday’s keynote speaker is Ag Day’s National Reporter Tyne Morgan. Greg Peterson, who is oldest of the Peterson Farm Bros. will also be speaking. The Peterson Farm Bros. are siblings who farm together with their parents near Assaria, Kansas, and produce entertaining and educational videos on their YouTube channel. The tour options include Union Station, Bayer Animal Health Inc., Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), The Roasterie, American Royal, Kansas Speedway, K-State Research and Extension Horticulture Research Farm, National Agriculture Center and Hall of Fame, Ingredion Incorporated, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City The Money Museum and others.

APRIL | MAY 2017




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Responding to Farm Emergencies: What You Need to Know About First Aid W

hen an emergency occurs, one of the first things you will need is a first aid kit. Are there first aid kits available around your farm? How would you care for a worker that was seriously injured if you did not have a first aid kit available? Even if there are first aid kits available, when is the last time someone inspected them and restocked them? Well stocked first aid kits should be placed in major buildings, trucks, tractors or other vehicles, and they should be checked and restocked periodically. Any missing items should be replaced so the kit is ready in case of emergencies. A properly equipped first aid kit will give you the supplies that you need to care for injuries. First aid kits should be readily accessible, and all employees should know where to find them, and how to use them. You can purchase pre-assembled first aid kits or put them together yourself. A small, home sized first aid kit may not be adequate for use on a farm where the potential for very traumatic injuries is always possible. A properly equipped first aid kit for a farm should include the following: • Latex or vinyl gloves, in varying sizes • Large triangular bandages (36” sides): used to make slings for broken limbs • Sterile compresses in assorted sizes • One large (12” x 30”) dressing in case of very large wounds • Stretch bandage material • Antiseptic, antiseptic swabs and alcohol swabs • Cold packs • Band aids • Adhesive or medical tape • Small packets of sugar for diabetic emergencies • Tongue depressors (to make finger splints) • SAM Splint

• Amputation preservation kit (plastic bags: one large garbage bag and four kitchen sized bags) • Pocket mask for performing CPR • Stainless steel bandage scissors that can cut through heavy material • A basic first aid manual

First aid kits will not make any difference if you do not know how to use them. Being trained in first aid could make the difference and save the victim’s life. In an emergency situation, try to stay calm and not panic; you can

help the victim greatly by doing this. Additionally, being trained in first aid and CPR will help you with this by preparing you for emergencies before they occur. In an emergency, call 911 quickly; if there are other people with you, one person should notify 911 and another should begin helping the victim. If you are alone with the victim, call 911 right away and then tend to the victim while help is on the way. Before you rush in to assist the victim, make sure the scene is safe first and assess what might have caused the incident. Never move an injured person unless they are in an immediately life threatening situation such as a fire or a possible explosion, as it could cause further damage. If the scene is safe, bring the first aid kit and check the victim to see if they are breathing. If the victim is not breathing, the most important thing to do is to open the airway. First, check their mouth and throat for blockages. If they are still not breathing, you must start CPR as soon as possible. If they are breathing, your next step is to look for and control any bleeding that is present. Plan and prepare for emergencies before they happen! By Pam Tinc, The New York Center for Agricultural Medicine & Health

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APRIL | MAY 2017

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Time to Purchase 2017 Crop Hail Coverage C

rop input costs will probably remain at high levels with seed, herbicides, insecticides, fuel, land, rent and labor leading the way. You may have already contracted the sale of some of your 2017 crops. This means that when contracts come due you must either deliver the commodity or the money to buy out your contract. If you plan to feed your crops and they are lost, you will need to purchase quality replacement feed. If you have never considered crop hail insurance as a risk management tool in the past, consider purchasing it in 2017. Crop hail insurance has been proven useful to many Wisconsin Farm Bureau members. Their loss experience proved that crop hail insurance was the best insurance product to indemnify them for their loss when a hailstorm damaged all or a portion of their crops. Crop hail coverage also isn’t just for crops like corn, soybeans and wheat. It’s available for many types of crops ranging from forage and row crops to fruit and vegetable crops. Crop hail insurance allows flexibility in your risk management insurance program. You can insure both profit and

the cost of production in the event that you lose your crop. Rural Mutual crop hail insurance covers your crops in units of one acre so that when a hailstorm crosses your property and damages a portion of your crops, you have coverage. Crop hail insurance covers your growing crops for direct loss of yield due to hail, fire, lightning, vandalism, malicious mischief, vehicle damage, fodder for silage corn, replanting allowance for covered perils, transportation coverage and fire department service charges. Rural Mutual offers no deductible and deductible policies that allow you to select what amount of your risk you wish to transfer and how much you will self-insure. Rural Mutual also has a wide array of discounts available, including new business and loyalty discounts. Farmers are in business today simply because they made the good business decision to purchase crop hail insurance. Rural Mutual crop hail insurance has protected Wisconsin farmers for more than 69 years. Contact your local Rural Mutual Insurance agent today to get more information before purchasing your 2017 crop hail insurance. Premiums paid here stay here to keep Wisconsin strong!

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


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wausau | eau claire visit our blogs at


On average, people estimate that life insurance costs three times more than it actually does2. See how affordable it can be to protect those most important in your world with life insurance. Contact your Rural Mutual Insurance agent today.

Rural Mutual Insurance Company Individual eligibility for all product promotions is subject to underwriting and approval. Estimated premium payment is for 20-year Choice Term Guaranteed Premium Plan; Standard; 35-year-old male or female; non-smoker. Amount is for demonstrative purposes only. Contact your Rural Mutual Insurance agent for a quote on your actual monthly premium payment. 2LIMRA Life Insurance Consumer Studies, Facts about Life 2016. Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company/West Des Moines, IA. LI173 (3-17) 1


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

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April-May 2017