On January 23, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers presented a three-phase plan at the Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center, in hopes to help Wisconsin farmers. With the milk prices at an all-time low and suffocating tariffs, farmers are struggling to make ends meet.
The first bill that has been proposed by Evers is The Wisconsin Initiative For Dairy Exports. Evers said, “We have to start maximizing efficiency in our small and middle-sized farms. We need to build Wisconsin’s dairy brand in international markets and increase dairy exports.”
Additionally, Evers hopes to bolster the Wisconsin Center and boost UW Extension staffing so farmers and other ag industry players can more easily access support and UW Extension partners locally. This bill will help connect Wisconsin farmers and rural consumers more closely. For example, local purchases help the local economy.
Lastly, Evers is going to create a program that will mainly focus on getting Wisconsin farmers immediate access to mental health services. Agricultural families and communities continue to struggle, leading to increasing rates of suicide among farmers.
Recently Evers contacted the Legislature regarding the passing of each bill. Although these bills have not been addressed, farmers across the state remain optimistic.
I was able to attend Gov. Evers’ presentation of the three-phase plan. It is clear that he is confident with this plan and wants to help Wisconsin farmers create a brighter future for everyone involved in the agricultural community. At the end of his presentation, he said, “the time is now,” and he couldn’t be more right!
Written by Emma Klessig
Sources: NBC26 article, Wisconsin Ag Connection article