On Jan. 26, nearly 200 farmers and agriculturists attended Ag Day at the Capitol. This annual event is for Wisconsin farmers and agriculturists to learn more about state issues affecting agriculture and meet with their state legislators.
Attendees were welcomed by WFBF President Kevin Krentz who then introduced Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection Secretary Randy Romanski.
Romanski encouraged farmers to build relationships with their legislators so they have a direct connection to the farm.
“Go out there and tell your story today,” Romanski said. “It’s an important one.”
Gov. Tony Evers joined the event in the afternoon and shared his appreciation for Wisconsin farmers and agribusinesses.
The governor touted his support for agriculture in the 2021-2023 budget and the investments that were made to benefit farmers now and into the future. He emphasized his investment for farmers with federal ARPA funds.
Funding for dairy processor grants and meat processing grants were also a highlight shared by the governor who said these are beneficial tools to help Wisconsin work through supply chain issues.
The governor reiterated his comments and commitment from his state of the state address regarding agricultural exports and praised the bill that was passed in December 2021.
Throughout the day attendees listened to issue briefings on farmer-led nitrate reduction initiatives, farmland preservation, truth in labeling bills, the Wildlife Damage Abatement and Claims Program, a hunting season for sandhill cranes, aboveground fuel storage tank update and wild parsnip.
Another focus of the program was a panel by industry professionals. The panelists talked about the importance of relationships with agricultural groups, legislators and state agencies and having a unified voice as an agricultural community.
WFBF President Krentz encouraged farmers to share their stories with legislators in their meetings and throughout the year.
“It’s important that they hear directly from you and how an issue is impacting you, your farm and your community,” said Krentz.
Rural Mutual Insurance Company and FS GROWMARK, Inc., were major sponsors of the event. Co-sponsors of the event, with Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation, included the Dairy Business Association, Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Cattlemen’s Association, Wisconsin Corn Growers Association, Wisconsin Pork Association, Wisconsin Potato & Vegetable Growers Association, Wisconsin Soybean Association and the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association.
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