Ag Briefs: Organic zucchini recalled, sold at almost 90 WI Walmarts

Wisconsin State Farmer
Wisconsin briefs


Tillage continues to fall behind

Wet and cool temperatures continue to delay the planting season across most of the state of Wisconsin. According to the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, temperatures averaged 3.5 degrees below normal for the week.

The weekend, however, provided a glimpse of warm weather, and windy conditions helped to start drying out fields. Manure hauling and spring tillage continued where fields were able to support machinery.

Spring tillage was reported as 8 percent complete, almost 3 weeks behind last year and 11 days behind the 5- year average. 


Burgers & Buns Fun Run set for May 14

The Wisconsin Beef Council is partnering with the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation and the Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center to host both virtual and in-person options for the annual Burgers & Buns Fun Run/Walk on May 14 to celebrate May Beef Month.

Proceeds will benefit Feeding Wisconsin, a state association of the six regional Feeding America affiliated food banks that provide food to all 72 Wisconsin counties.

Register by noon on March 28 to guarantee your beefy race T-shirt and box of swag. Virtual participants will have their items shipped directly to their homes. Those participating in person can pick up their race materials Sat., May 14 at the Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center in Manitowoc, Wis.

Check-in begins at 9 a.m. The race kicks off at 10:00 a.m. followed by free burgers and a brief awards ceremony. All race participants will receive free admission to the Farm Wisconsin Discover Center for the day.

Can’t make it on May 14? You can take part in our virtual race May 15-31. Register at


Organic zucchini recalled, sold at almost 90 WI Walmarts

World Variety Produce Inc. has voluntarily recalled organic zucchini that tested positive for salmonella and was sold at Walmarts across Wisconsin, according to an announcement Tuesday through the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The organic zucchini, which was sold under the Organic Marketside brand, was carried by some Walmart stores in 18 states, including Wisconsin, where it was sold at nearly 90 stores, including ones in Appleton, Chilton, De Pere, Fond du Lac, Green Bay, Manitowoc, Marinette, Marshfield, Merrill, Minocqua, Oshkosh, Plover, Shawano, Sheboygan, Sturgeon Bay, Wausau and Wisconsin Rapids.

The recalled zucchini was sold in a two-pack tray with the UPC code 6-81131-22105-4 and the case lot number 38706503.


Small ruminant webinar series to focus on sheep

Join Todd Taylor, the University of Wisconsin - Madison Sheep Research Program Manager at the Arlington Agricultural Research Station Sheep Unit, and Extension Educators for an in-depth look into sheep research, teaching, and extension activities and events at the Arlington Agricultural Research Station.

The free webinar starts at 7:30 p.m. Tues., March 10. To register visit


ABS Global recognized for climate smart infrastructure

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development State Director in Wisconsin Julie Lassa, alongside other federal and local officials, visited ABS Global in the Town of Dekorra to recognize critical infrastructure improvements to strengthen energy independence.

Thanks in-part to a $250,000 grant through USDA’s Rural Energy for America Program (REAP), ABS Global was able to purchase and install a 657 kilowatt solar array. Not only will this climate-smart infrastructure help the business save on their bottom line – nearly $61,000 in annual electrical cost savings – but also reduce their carbon footprint by replacing nearly 867,000 kilowatt hours of electricity – enough energy to power 80 homes.


Dairyland Laboratories Inc. purchases services from DHIA Laboratories

Dairyland Laboratories has purchased feed and forage testing services from DHIA Laboratories in Sauk Centre, Minn. DHIA Laboratories will continue to provide milk and testing independent of Dairyland Laboratories.

As of  April 25, 2022, samples are now being tested at Dairyland’s Sauk Rapids, Minn., laboratory location. 

Dairyland Laboratories provides extensive analysis of feed, forage, water, molds and mycotoxins across the United States as well as internationally.


Final Badger Crop Connect Spring Sessions set

UW Extension and Nutrient & Pest Management Program announced upcoming Spring 2022 series of the Badger Crop Connect. The spring series includes: May 11, 12:30 p.m.: Joe Lauer & Shawn Conley, early season corn and soybean updates; and 

May 25, 12:30 p.m., Late corn and soybean updates.

You must register for these free webinars. Once registered, you need not register for upcoming summer and fall Badger Crop Connect presentations. To register visit:


Texas moves into No. 3 slot in milk production

The latest USDA March 2022 Milk Production report shows the Lone Star State has climbed 6.7%, which helped them Texas past Idaho, to now rank No. 3 for milk production. 

According to Juan Piñeiro, Assistant Professor and Extension Dairy Specialist with Texas A&M, Texas’s milk production has increased an impressive 190%, going from 5.1 billion lb. to 14.8 billion lb. from 2001 to 2020, Dairy Herd Management reported. 

The expansion of milk processing capacity and new plant construction in the Panhandle has spurred the increase in both cow numbers and production that Texas has seen. 


CVTC student among top six finalists in veal competition

Jasmine Bylander of the Chippewa Valley Technical College was Wisconsin's top finisher with her Sticks and Dip recipe. Bylander's finish put her among the top six finalists in this year’s National Veal Collegiate Competition.

While Leslie Lecomte from Arizona took the title as the 2022 winner of the State and National Veal Collegiate Competition, Bylander tied with Andrea Lazos of Ohio as the People’s Choice winner of the competition.

Beef Checkoff-funded Veal – Discover Delicious and State Beef Councils partnered to host this competition for culinary students in six states.


ASF vaccine passes tests required for regulatory approval

Scientists with the USDA's Agriculture Research Service (ARS) announced that a vaccine candidate for African Swine Fever (ASF) passed an important safety test required for regulatory approval, moving the vaccine one step closer to commercial availability.

These safety studies are necessary to gain approval for use in Vietnam and eventually in other countries around the world. Future commercial use, however, will depend on approval from the department of animal health within each requesting country.

Although the virus is causing profound economic losses to the swine industry, there have not been any outbreaks in the United States. 


Gov. Evers creates the state’s first office of environmental justice

Last week, Gov. Tony Evers used his powers of executive order to create an office of environmental justice to promote environmentally fair policies, Wisconsin State Journal reported.

The Office of Environmental Justice will be housed within the Department of Administration and will facilitate collaboration across state agencies in an effort to help under-resourced communities adapt to climate change, Evers said.

The new office will work with farmers and rural communities, communities of color, tribal nations, state and local partners, and low-income populations, among other key stakeholders, the governor’s office said.


Corn expected to be more profitable than soybeans for 2022

Corn is projected to be more profitable than soybeans this year according to an analysis by ag economics professors at the University of Illinois.

Gary Schnitkey tells Brownfield Ag News strong corn prices still outweigh high fertilizer costs giving corn a $108 to $227 dollar per acre return advantage over soybeans when planted between April 1st and June 10th.

He says they used maximum yields of 235 bushels per acre for corn and 75 bpa for soybeans and factored in yield declines for later planting dates. Fertilizer prices included $621/ton for 33% nitrogen solution, $987 for DAP and $865 for potash. The calculation was based on $7 corn and $14.80 soybeans.


USDA allows line speeds to increase in some packing plants

USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced it approved the Clemens Food Group pork packing plant in Coldwater, Mich., to run faster line speeds under a one-year trial program.

The agency now has let four plants operate with faster harvesting line speeds, which could increase packing capacity and alleviate supply issues in the face of strong pork demand.

FSIS established the line speeds program last November, after a provision in USDA’s 2019 New Swine Inspection System (NSIS) was struck down by a U.S. District Court in March 2021. 

According to Iowa State University economist Dermot Hayes, if six plants are in the program, the aggregate impact on U.S. pork harvest capacity will be a 3.6% expansion. After one year, that would translate into an increase in live hog prices of 6%.