Author Kristy Athens speaks with Lake Effect's Mitch Teich.
Many people who live in the city or suburbs have had the somewhat romantic notion of giving up the rat race and buying a place in the country... maybe getting some chickens, growing some of your own food. It's tempting, especially after you've sat in rush hour traffic for a while.
Visitors flocked to State Fair Park Thursday, where the annual fair began its 11-day run. Farmers from every county in Wisconsin are showing their livestock, in hopes of winning the Blue Ribbon. WUWM’s Marti Mikkelson found that one subject weighing heavily on many cattle owners’ minds is water.
Farmers in southeastern Wisconsin are wondering just how bad this growing season will be – or what might be salvageable. The drought in southern Wisconsin last week intensified from moderate to severe. WUWM’s LaToya Dennis visited Rob -N-Cin’s Farm in West Bend.The family-owned farm tends around 400 dairy cows and raises crops - alfalfa, corn, soybeans and winter wheat. Son Rick Roden fears this season could be devastating.
Wisconsin has long been known as the ‘dairy’ state, but it actually grows the biggest variety of crops in the nation. Farmers here are tops in cranberries, while soy is also huge, so is corn. Wisconsin is also near the top when it comes to growing and processing vegetables and meats. In this segment of our series, “Project Milwaukee: What’s On Our Plate,” we touch upon just a few of the products and related operations that link farm to market.
In 2009, milk prices dropped so low that dairy farmers lost up to half their income. Some had to slaughter their cows because they couldn’t afford to feed them anymore. Others decided enough was enough, and sold their animals and their land.WUWM’s Erin Toner visits a family near Slinger who made it through last year, but just barely.
2009 was a make or break year for dairy farmers in Wisconsin. Milk prices dropped so low that most farmers had to go deeper into debt just to survive. Some lost so much money they had to sell their farms. Today, we begin a series profiling two dairy farming families in Wisconsin. Both managed to weather the worst year they can remember, and hope to stay in the business they love as long as they can.