Column: Representative Dallman Highlights Investments in Agriculture

With the fall season right around the corner, farmers across Wisconsin are preparing for harvest. Combines and harvesters are emerging as anticipation builds for the harvest season. In Madison, Legislative Republicans are joining in the effort by providing critical investments to fund proven programs that support our farmers and agricultural producers.

Legislative Republicans have worked this session to give our farmers much needed resources to succeed. Our state budget made targeted and strategic investments in the agriculture industry by providing funding for the new agriculture road improvement program, doubling funding to expand meat and dairy processor capacity and production, and supporting the expansion and promotion of agriculture exports from Wisconsin.

Local roads and highways are the backbone on which our agriculture industry can transport their equipment, machinery, and products. The Legislature invested $150 million for updating agricultural roads subject to posted weight limits. These funds will significantly improve the condition of rural roads and make hauling agricultural products like milk and grain easier.

Also, if you are a hunter or buyer of freezer beef or pork, you have experienced the long delays in meat processing. Our budget invested $1 million annually to increase capacity for meat processors. In addition, we also included over $1 million in new funding to help meet the demand for more meat inspectors across the state. On top of the investments made in meat processing, the legislature invested $600,000 to help expand operations at dairy processors as well.

Along with our work within Wisconsin’s borders, access to international markets is crucial to growing Wisconsin’s agriculture industry, which is why Republicans included an additional $2 million for the state’s agricultural exports program. This particular program collaborates with multiple state agencies to increase Wisconsin’s agricultural exports such as dairy, meat, crop and other products. This program has been extremely successful as it works to meet its goal to grow exports by 25% above 2021 numbers by 2026.

As the fall harvest starts up again, I want to wish all the farmers a safe and successful harvest season.