Gov. Tony Evers kicked off June Dairy Month in America’s Dairyland, sharing a video message celebrating Wisconsin’s strong dairy tradition and proclaiming June 2023 as “June Dairy Month” across the state.
Throughout the month of June, the governor will be visiting with dairy farmers, processors, and producers, as well as local community and agricultural industry leaders across the state, to celebrate the strength of Wisconsin’s dairy industry and to highlight the state’s investments in the dairy and agricultural industries.
As America’s Dairyland, Wisconsin’s dairy industry is a significant part of the state’s cultural heritage and a central driver of the state’s economic future. According to the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, Wisconsin is home to nearly 6,000 dairy farms—more than any other state—and the dairy industry contributes $45.6 billion annually to Wisconsin’s economy.
This month, Evers highlights investments he’s had a hand in to strengthen Wisconsin’s dairy industry. These include: investing $100 million to support Wisconsin farmers in all 72 counties through the Wisconsin Farm Support Program; giving 21 recipients a 2023 Dairy Processor Grant to foster innovation, improve profitability, and sustain the long-term viability of Wisconsin’s dairy processing facilities; increasing the annual funding for dairy processor grants from $200,000 to $400,000 to provide additional support to Wisconsin’s dairy industry; signing legislation that advance the state’s agricultural export program, including funding specifically targeted at promoting dairy exports, and worked to help bolster the long-term viability of the dairy industry by investing in programs and projects like the Dairy Innovation Hub and the brand-new Center for Dairy Research at the UW-Madison.
Building upon that work, Evers’ 2023-25 biennial budget proposed an additional $1.6 million in funding for the Dairy Processor Grant Program and significant investments in other areas that impact daily life for dairy and other agricultural producers.
Last week, the Joint Finance Committee voted to adopt several budget proposals based on recommendations made by the governor, including providing $1.5 million annually on a one-time basis to support food insecure Tribal elders, an additional $300,000 annually for the Dairy Processor Grant Program on a one-time basis, bringing funding for the program to $500,000 each year, as well as investing $1 million annually for the Wisconsin Initiative for Agricultural Exports and providing additional funding to support farmer mental health assistance programming at DATCP.
See the guv’s video message: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJzz9_EJpbE