2010 was a good year for the state’s farmers and 2011 should be interesting. Casey Langan, a spokesperson for the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation, says 2010’s top stories for farmers were the November elections, the animal welfare debate and an amazing growing season. “It was a great year all across the state,” says Langan. “We had a great spring, we had a summer with hot weather and timely rains, a great harvest season. Just one for the record books.”
Langan says the top ag stories of 2011 will be the political changes in both Wisconsin and Washington, which will come as the state works on their next budget and the U.S. Farm Bill is reworked. “We are going to see changes to the Farm Bill. If you can’t cut nutrition programs, and you don’t want to cut conservation programs, there’s not much left there but to cut some of those subsidy programs,” Langan predicts.
Both the state and the feds will have to work around huge deficits, Langan notes. Dairy farmers can expect low prices for the first half of the new year, but they’re expected to rebound.
Paul Knoff, WCCN