As many Wisconsin farmers cling to their livelihood, hoping for some relief soon from crushing low commodity prices, some are asking what the state agriculture department will be like after Tony Evers becomes the next governor.
Evers didn’t get into much detail on farm issues during his campaign, farmers say, but they’re keenly interested in his views and whom he appoints as secretary of the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.
The department’s work touches nearly everyone in the state, not just farmers, in areas such as state-inspected meat packing plants, enforcement of weights and measures standards, and accuracy of gasoline pumps.
Evers has pledged to strengthen the University of Wisconsin Extension's support and market assistance for farmers caught in brutal commodities markets.
“Wisconsin farmers are in a crisis as prices within the farm economy have been below production costs for more than three years. Farm families are enduring bankruptcy, health issues and even suicides as rural Wisconsin loses more than one dairy farm every day,” Evers said during his campaign.
“Farm policies have encouraged overproduction, which has resulted in financial stress to dairy farm families, causing many of them to have to exit the industry.”
Read more in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.