Ag Briefs: Town of Alto barn destroyed in blaze

Wisconsin State Farmer
National briefs


Waupun FFA partners with pork producers

The Waupun Area Jr./Sr. FFA is the first FFA chapter in Wisconsin to partner with the Wisconsin Pork Association and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) to connect Wisconsin pork producers, local meat processors and consumers.

Due to the challenges of COVID-19 resulting in the disruption of the food processing chain, pork is being made available at cost to local consumers at just $51.00/bundle. The Passion for Pork Program is creating a new destination for pork that may otherwise have gone to waste due to the backlog of processors.

Pork bundles include 3 lb. or pork chops, 8 lbs. of pork roasts and 4 lbs. of pork burger.  To order visit A pickup time on June 28 will be emailed with confirmation of the order.


WI Steam & Antique Engine club announce cancellation

The Wisconsin Steam & Antique Engine Club has cancelled their annual antique power show this year.

A statement on their Facebook page said the board of directors voted to cancel the event. This follows the cancellations of other antique power shows, like the Dodge County Antique Power Show in Burnett Corners, and many county fairs.

The show was originally scheduled for August 8 and 9 in Chilton at the Calumet County Fairgrounds. President Willie Boettcher said earlier this month that the club was considering cancelling after their regular monthly meetings were cancelled several times.

"We'll be back next year with a great show," the statement read. "Thank you for your past attendance and looking forward to 2021!"


Barn lost in blaze

No one was injured in a fire that destroyed a town of Alto barn on June 15. According to the Fond du Lac Sheriff's Office, deputies and members of the Alto Fire Department were dispatched to barn located at N3062 Hwy. 49 around 1:21 p.m.

When firefighters arrived on the scene, the barn was fully engulfed. Firefighters from the Waupun, Brandon-Fairwater, North Fond du Lac and City of Fond du Lac departments provided mutual aid.

According to law enforcement, the fire spread to the structure from a nearby brush pile that had been smoldering. No animals were injured in the fire. The barn is a total loss. The owner of the property is Allen Ehlts of Waupun. 


Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center to host hands-on Farmer for a Day event

Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center will host a hands-on Farmer for a Day event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 20. The event is included with Farm Wisconsin admission and offers families a chance to get up close and personal with many aspects of Wisconsin agriculture.

The whole family will find ways to connect their curiosity and discover what it means to be a modern farmer through diverse features and activities outside.

Tickets are available for purchase at the door or online at Farm Wisconsin is at 7001 Gass Lake Road, can be reached at 920-726-6000 and is online at


National Dairy Shrine cancels awards  banquet

The Board of Directors of the National Dairy Shrine announced the cancellation of the 2020 National Dairy Shrine Awards Banquet. The awards program has been held annually in conjunction with World Dairy Expo, and the cancellation of the 2020 World Dairy Expo facilitated the decision.

The honorees who would have been recognized at the 2020 banquet will be honored in 2021. That includes the Guest of Honor, Distinguished Dairy Cattle Breeder and Pioneer award winners. Students who received scholarships in 2020 will also be formally recognized next year, however the monetary value of the scholarships will be provided this year.

The annual meeting of the National Dairy Shrine, normally held just prior to the awards banquet, has been moved to a virtual format. The 2020 meeting will be held at noon CST on Oct. 1, 2020.


More state fairs cancelled

The Illinois State Fair in Springfield and the Du Quoin State Fair have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced Friday.

In a statement, Pritzker said canceling the fairs was "the right choice based on guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health and other experts." 

The Illinois State Fair, held annually in August, was last canceled from 1942 to 1945 during World War II. This year is the first time the Du Quoin State Fair has been cancelled since the state took over the fairgrounds in 1986. 

Illinois, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Indiana and Ohio's state fairs have been cancelled for 2020 because of coronavirus concerns, joining dozens of other Midwest events that have been called off or postponed.


Federal payments may make up 36% of farm income

The government will send a record $32.8 billion in direct payments to farmers this year but the economic slowdown triggered by the coronavirus still will pull down farm income by 3 percent, said the FAPRI think tank at the University of Missouri.

According to Fern's Ag Insider, federal supports would amount to 36 percent of farm income, its largest share since 2001.

Trade war and coronavirus relief payments would account for the bulk of the payments. Both are temporary programs, ending this year. After dipping to $90.6 billion this year, farm income would fall by 21 percent in 2021, to $79.4 billion.

The think tank said current conditions indicate China will not satisfy its “phase one” agreement to buy vastly larger amounts of U.S. farm exports, according to Fern's Ag Insider report.


Coalition asks court to block use of existing dicamba stocks

The National Family Farm Coalition filed an emergency motion with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California asking the court to immediately stop farmers from using their existing stocks of dicamba.

According to Brownfield Ag News, the motion claims EPA lacks the authority to issue a dicamba registration cancellation that allows the use of existing stocks on hand.

The groups want the court to hold the EPA and Administrator Andrew Wheeler in contempt of court for defying the court’s June 3rd decision.

The EPA says it will defend its current order allowing farmers to spray existing stocks this month. The 9th Circuit Court has issued an order directing the EPA to respond by June 16 to the emergency motion, according to Brownfield News.