Insurance-premium rebates available
The application period for crop-insurance premium rebates will be open from Dec. 5 to Jan. 31. Recipients will receive a $5 per-acre rebate on their summer 2023 crop-insurance premium for acres planted with cover crops in 2022 in Wisconsin.
There’s $800,000 or 160,000 acres of coverage to be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis, according to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.
Producers who received state or federal cost-sharing to plant cover crops in 2022 are ineligible for the 2023 program. Applicants must use their Farm Service Agency-578 form to complete the application. There’s no limit on acres for which an applicant can apply.
Applicants will be notified of selection in spring 2023. Applicants should keep seed receipts and planting records. The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection will conduct audits to ensure cover crops were planted.
Visit datcp.wi.gov and search for “crop insurance rebates” or contact DATCPCC@wisconsin.gov for more information.
Meat processors awarded grants
Ninety-one Wisconsin meat processors recently were selected to receive a total of $10 million through the Meat and Poultry Supply Chain Resiliency Grant program. The program was created in May 2022 to continue to support the growth of Wisconsin’s meat-processing industry and improve the long-term viability of the state’s livestock industry.
Funded through the American Rescue Plan Act, Wisconsin meat processors will receive funding for grant projects of as much as $150,000. Grants are awarded through a competitive selection process. Selected processors must provide a match of 100 percent of the grant amount.
The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection received 99 grant applications requesting more than $11 million in funding. A list of the 91 selected recipients that span 48 Wisconsin counties is available. Projects have been selected to receive grants pending contract finalization. Visit datcp.wi.gov – and search for “meat and livestock development” for more information.
USDA invests in disease response
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is providing $9.4 million to 26 states and six Tribes or Tribal organizations. The aim is to further develop and implement chronic-wasting-disease-management and response activities in wild and farmed deer.
State departments of agriculture, state animal-health agencies, state departments of wildlife or natural resources, and federally recognized Native American Tribal governments and organizations were eligible to submit proposals that further develop and implement chronic-wasting disease-management, response, and research activities, including surveillance and testing.
The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service also enabled those governments and organizations to support the use of education and outreach activities to increase awareness about the disease and how it spreads. The agency based funding allocations on priorities that were collaboratively established with state agricultural and wildlife representatives, Tribal officials and the deer industry.
The agency received 56 proposals. It conducted scientific and program-panel reviews of the proposals. It also worked with submitting entities where needed to refine the scope of the most promising projects.
Visit aphis.usda.gov – and search for “farmed cervid spending” – and aphis.usda.gov – and search for “wild cervid spending” – and aphis.usda.gov – and search for “tribal wild cervid spending” – for more information.
Comments on funding sought
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service seeks public input on implementation of more than $19 billion provided by the Inflation Reduction Act. The agency will use the investments provided through Inflation Reduction Act-funded conservation programs.
The agency seeks comments on how to target program benefits, quantify impact and improve program delivery and outreach, especially for underserved producers. Comments are due Dec. 21. The agency will identify immediate changes that can be made in fiscal year 2023 and will continue to identify and adopt additional changes in future years.
The Inflation Reduction Act provided unprecedented funding levels for several of the existing programs that the Natural Resources Conservation Service implements. The increased funding levels begin in fiscal year 2023 and will build in four years, totaling additional amounts:
• $8.45 billion – Environmental Quality Incentives Program
People are also reading…
• $3.25 billion – Conservation Stewardship Program
• $4.95 billion – Regional Conservation Partnership Program
• $1.4 billion – Agricultural Conservation Easement Program
• $1 billion – Conservation Technical Assistance
The agency seeks input on to how to best maximize benefits for climate mitigation, including targeting practices and programs that provide quantifiable reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions. It also is requesting feedback to help identify strategies and provide recommendations on how to maximize, target, monitor and quantify improvements to soil carbon, reductions in nitrogen losses, and the reduction, capture, avoidance or sequestration of carbon dioxide, methane or nitrous-oxide emissions associated with agricultural production.
Public comments should be submitted by Dec. 21. Visit federalregister.gov and search for “implementation of Inflation Reduction Act funding” or contact NRCS.IRA.Input@usda.gov for more information.
Virtual-fencing company acquired
Merck Animal Health recently signed an agreement to acquire Vence, a developer of virtual fencing for rotational grazing and livestock management.
The technology is designed to help producers and ranchers monitor and manage movement of cattle through a platform of virtual-fencing solutions. Using a computer or smartphone, customers have the capability to manage cattle movement. Visit merck-animal-health-usa.com and vence.io for more information.
Meat-cutting certificate offered
A new pathway into a career as a butcher or in retail meat sales is now available through a nine-credit meat-cutting and butchery certificate from Mid-State Technical College. The part-time certificate can be completed in six months. It will be available in spring 2023 with evening classes held at Auburndale High School in Auburndale, Wisconsin.
The certificate is designed for individuals who want to explore or expand their knowledge of meat cutting and butchery in their current roles. It’s also designed for individuals looking to sell retail meats directly from their own production-agriculture operation or open their own meat-processing operation.
The grant funding for the new program is provided by a collaboration from Gov. Tony Evers and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection to address the future of meat processing in Wisconsin. The grant will invest as much as $5 million in American Rescue Plan Act funding to develop meat-talent development assistance. Mid-State will receive $196,384 to provide short-term training aimed to build the workforce in central Wisconsin.
Program participants will experience hands-on training with meat cutting and butchering, including knife skills and selection. They’ll also learn processes such as portioning for retail, smoking, grinding, curing and brining. Also covered will be training in identifying meats for quality and value-added products. The program includes sanitation regulations and standards.
Visit mstc.edu/meat and search for “meat cutting” or contact email@example.com or 715-422-5356 for more information.
Loan-assistance tool offered
The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently launched an online tool to help farmers and ranchers better navigate the farm-loan application process. The tool is available 24/7. It provides customers a guide that supplements the support they receive when working in person with a USDA employee, providing materials that may help an applicant prepare a loan application.
The new tool is the first of multiple farm-loan process improvements that will be available on farmers.gov in the future, the agency stated. Expected to launch in 2023 is an interactive direct-loan application that gives customers a paperless and electronic signature option, along with the ability to attach supporting documents such as tax returns. Visit lat.fpac.usda.gov for more information.
Chronic wasting disease affects farm
A deer farm in Wisconsin’s Lincoln County recently tested positive for chronic wasting disease. Samples were confirmed by the National Veterinary Services Laboratories in Ames, Iowa.
The positive result came from a 5-year-old white-tailed buck. The farm has been placed in quarantine, where it will remain while the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection and the U.S. Department of Agriculture veterinarians and staff conduct the epidemiological investigation.
Chronic wasting disease is a fatal neurological disease of deer, elk and moose. It’s caused by an infectious protein called a prion that affects the animal’s brain. Testing for the disease is typically performed only after the animal’s death. The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection regulates deer farms for registration, recordkeeping, disease testing, movement and permit requirements. Visit datcp.wi.gov and search for “chronic wasting disease” for more information.