Ag Briefs: WCGA announces WI Corn Yield Contest winners

Wisconsin State Farmer
Wisconsin briefs


National Mastitis Council members gather for annual meeting

Five of the six National Dairy Quality Awards handed out by the National Mastitis Council (NMC) went to Wisconsin dairy farms during the NMC's 2021 annual meeting. More than 370 attendees, representing milk quality, mastitis and udder health researchers, dairy producers and dairy industry partners, gathered for the virtual event.

Wisconsin operations recognized as Platinum winners were: Blue Star Dairy Middleton LLC (Art and Lori Meinholz), Middleton, Wis.; Christop Dairy (Neil Christianson), Shiocton, Wis.; Country Aire Farms (Tom, Mike, Nick, Matt, Craig and Jonathan Gerrits), Kaukauna, Wis.; Riverside Dairy LLC (Andy Fisher and Tom and Jean Tienor), Reedsville, Wis.; University of Wisconsin Marshfield Agricultural Research Station, Stratford, Wis.

Judges selected outstanding dairies to receive this honor based on quality milk production indicators, such as somatic cell count and bacteria count, along with milking routine, systems of monitoring udder health, treatment protocols and strategies for overall herd health and welfare.


WCGA announces Wisconsin Corn Yield Contest winners

The Wisconsin Corn Growers Association has awarded several of its members for their achievements in improving corn yield this year.

The award recognizes corn growers for innovation in agronomic practices and management. The contest awarded winners based on the highest corn yield (measured by bushels per acre) for the 2020 growing season depending on geographical location. Cash prizes went to each winner: $500 for first place, $250 for second and $100 for third.

Winners from Columbia County Corn Growers were Allan Schroeder, Rio (255.7947 bu/acre) and Zachary Mickelson, DeForest (243.4133 bu/acre). The winner from Rock County Corn Growers was Nick Venable, Janesville (279.1467 bu/acre). The winners from Northern Wisconsin were Jeff Laskowski, Plover (302.4913 bu/acre); Eric Weber, Barron (272.7541 bu/acre); and Barb Laskowski, Plover (271.7817 bu/acre). The winners from Southern Wisconsin were Jerry Kreuziger, Juneau (266.5071 bu/acre); Dan Duthie, Theresa (248.226 bu/acre); and Richard Lucas, Hancock (244.6635 bu/acre).


DNR accepting entries for '22 stamp design contests

The DNR is inviting residents 18 years and older to enter the agency's 2022 Wisconsin wild turkey, pheasant and waterfowl stamp design contests. Artists must submit their entries by July 15, 2021 for the 2022 contests.

Turkey, pheasant and waterfowl hunters are required to purchase a species-specific stamp to legally harvest game birds in Wisconsin. The stamp programs provide opportunities for wildlife and habitat management, with efforts directed toward key species.

Funds derived from the stamps’ sale support species management throughout the state, including habitat management, restoration, education and research projects.

Artwork must meet technical requirements to be eligible, and applicants should review contest rules carefully to ensure their entries' eligibility. Read full contest rules and reproduction rights agreements on the DNR’s website.


NC id's first case of Denmark "Cluster Five" variant

MAKO Medical Labs have identified North Carolina’s first case of the Denmark “Cluster Five” variant, which has been largely linked to minks.

Researchers are concerned because early data shows that strain appears to be stronger against antibody treatments.

According to the World Health Organization, initial observations of the variant suggest the severity and transmission are similar to that of other circulating SARS-CoV-2 viruses.

Health officials said this variant, however, had a combination of mutations that had not been previously seen and are not as well understood.

The lab also identified additional cases of the variant that originally emerged in the United Kingdom, bringing the total number of cases in North Carolina to five.


DBIA to award $1M in next round of grants

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA), a partnership between the Center for Dairy Research (CDR) and Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA), will be distributing $1 million this spring in its next grant cycle.

Dairy enterprises (farmers, entrepreneurs, processors, etc.) in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin are eligible to apply.

Eligible projects include dairy farm diversification, the creation of “value added” dairy products and starting/increasing exports of dairy products. Grants of up to $50,000 will be awarded through a competitive process.

Grant applications will be available for download on the DBIA website starting March 1, 2021 and are due April 30, 2021. The grant application will be posted on this page:

Last year, in its first phase, DBIA provided $230,000 to 13 dairy farms and businesses in all five of the participating states.


Compeer Financial awards $217K in grants

Compeer Financial’s Fund for Rural America, the Farm Credit cooperative’s giving program, has awarded 40 General Use Grants, totaling $217,113. General Use Grants fund initiatives and organizations whose work enriches agriculture and rural America, aligning with Compeer Financial’s mission.

These grants will directly impact the lives of 1.2 million people and will touch 6.2 million lives. Eighteen grants, totaling $91,293 went directly to coronavirus-related efforts including pop-up food pantries and rent assistance and more.

Wisconsin groups receiving grants include: Catholic Charities, Inc., Diocese of Madison; Community Connections Free Clinic; Dairy Girl Network, Inc; Envision Greater Fond du Lac Agri-Business Council; Feed My People; Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin; Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association; Junior Achievement of Wisconsin, Inc.; Living Hope Food Pantry; Marshfield Medical Center - Beaver Dam; Mutual Community Mission Group; Rice Lake Area Free Clinic; Southwestern Wisconsin Community Action Program; Stepping Stones of Dunn County Inc.; Turtle Lake Area Food Pantry; UW-Platteville Pioneer Farm and Wisconsin Rural Women's Initiative.


Century and Sesquicentennial Farm Apps due March 1

Applications are now available for the 2021 Century and Sesquicentennial Farm and Home Award, an award given to families who have dedicated their life to Wisconsin farming for 100 or 150 years. The 2021 Wisconsin State Fair is slated for Aug. 5-15, 2021 at Wisconsin State Fair Park in West Allis.

To qualify for the award, families are required to provide proof of continuous family ownership of a property in the state of Wisconsin for either the last 100 or 150 years. All property owners will be honored at a special Century and Sesquicentennial Farm and Home Award Program.

Applications are now available and must be postmarked by the application deadline, Monday, March 1, 2021. Applications are not available online and only one certificate may be issued per property.

To request a copy of either application, contact jill Albanese, Director of Competitive Exhibits by calling 414-777-0580 or by email at


2021 Midwest Manure Summit to go virtual

The 2021 Midwest Manure Summit, hosted by the UW-Madison College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, will be a free, virtual event this year.

It will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 24 from 9 am to 4:30 pm via Zoom. Leading researchers and industry professionals will be featured speakers during the conference, discussing strategy and technology regarding manure management on the farm.

You must register by 5 pm Monday, Feb. 22 on the conference website, The first 100 people to register will receive a free goodie bag that includes resources and other information to accompany your virtual conference experience. Any questions may be directed to Heather Schlesser, Marathon County Extension office, at or 715-261-1230, extension 2.