The dairy industry is getting an uptick in resources as the Joint Finance Committee (JFC) makes a commitment to uplift dairy producers with critical funds. Following this decision, the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) has issued a statement applauding the action to grow the state’s $46 billion industry.
“Innovation and export engagement are critical to the long-term stability and success of Wisconsin's dairy farming and processing community,” said John Umhoefer, WCMA Executive Director. "Our thanks go to lawmakers who have championed targeted investments in Wisconsin’s signature industry.”
As a recent release outlined, a proposal approved by JFC members increases annual funding for the Dairy Processor Grant Program at the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP), to a total of $1 million over the biennium; it also includes $2 million over the biennium for the impactful Wisconsin Initiative on Agricultural Exports, which in its first year supported dairy export growth of over 37 percent.
WCMA recognizes the work of JFC members Rep. Tony Kurtz (R-Wonewoc) and Sen. Joan Ballweg (R-Markesan), as well as the leadership of JFC co-chairs Sen. Howard Marklein (R-Spring Green) and Rep. Mark Born (R-Beaver Dam). Members also thank Gov. Tony Evers for advocating for increases in funding for the Dairy Processor Grant Program and support for the Wisconsin Initiative on Agricultural Exports.
“As Wisconsin dairy processors expand their capacity and modernize facilities, create new value-added products, and launch new endeavors, they are creating family-supporting job opportunities, strengthening the market for farmers’ milk, and boosting the largely rural communities in which they operate,” Rebekah Sweeney, WCMA Senior Director of Programs and Policy, commented in an earlier release. “It’s a win-win for Wisconsin, and we appreciate the support of lawmakers now considering a funding increase.”
Cheers to a well-deserved boost for dairy processors! For more industry news, keep reading DMN.