June 2020 Vol. 1
Brought to you by Dairy's Professional Development Organization ®
APPLY TODAY! WISCONSIN FARM SUPPORT PROGRAM will provide $50 million in relief to farmers who suffered economic damages in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Beginning June 15 applications are being accepted online, with fund disbursement to begin July 15. The Wisconsin Department of Revenue has created a website for applications and frequently asked questions. Click here for more details or call 608-266-2772 with questions.

Since the program is based on tax filings, calling the folks at the Department of Revenue (DOR) is the best way to get answers to questions and further information. Also, the DOR has a great set of FAQs on their website designed to address many common questions. Access their resources here:
LOOKING FOR TOP DAIRY INDUSTRY TALENT? An online resource from PDPW provides a great way to connect with students from universities and technical colleges who are seeking full- and part-time positions on dairies and in dairy-related occupations. Check out the  PDPW talentCONNECT™ site   to view experiences and skills of qualified individuals that may be the perfect fit for your organization.
If you are a student who would like to learn more about posting your information at talentCONNECT, contact PDPW at 800-947-7379 or email  [email protected]
The Dairy Signal
JOIN INDUSTRY EXPERTS ON THE DAIRY SIGNAL. Don’t miss your chance to hear from leaders in dairy, government, finance, marketing and education (and more!) every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Recorded versions of every Dairy Signal™ program can be accessed free at the PDPW website .

Each session features timely insights and resources to support dairy farmers and industry professionals. Click here to find archived recordings in English and Spanish via La Señal Lechera™.

Coming up this week:
Tuesday, June 16
Hear an update from Washington. Find out what we have to look forward to in agriculture and what policies are being discussed that will impact our industry.
  • Dr. Mark Stephenson of UW-Madison Director of Dairy Policy Analysis and Director of Wisconsin's Center for Dairy Profitability
  • Jim Mulhern, President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) 
Wednesday, June 17
A COVID-19 outbreak on a farm could be catastrophic by jeopardizing the health of the team members and getting essential products to market. Learn about OSHA and CDC interim guidelines for Agricultural Workers and Employers to keep essential workers safe.

  • Mary Bauer, Compliance Assistance Specialist, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) for the Eau Claire area.
  • Dr. Casper Bendixsen, Director, National Farm Medicine Center

Thursday, June 18
Experts will talk about how and what kind of impact the COVID-19 situation has had on different sectors of the food industry, specifically restaurants and grocery stores and what the future holds when it comes to vulnerability and opportunity.
  • Brandon Scholz, President and CEO of the Wisconsin Grocers Association
  • Susan Quam, Executive Vice President of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association

Recent episodes include:
Advice for selecting risk-management tools that fit each dairy operation.
  • Sam Miller, Managing Director, Head of Agriculture for BMO Harris Bank
  • Steve Schwoerer, Senior Dairy Lending Specialist at Compeer Financial

Perspective on consumers’ desires for healthy, simple foods and how dairy products fit in the mix.
  • Charlie Arnot, CEO of the Center for Food Integrity and President of Look East

Updates on dairy’s carbon footprint and the role of producers in telling dairy’s story.
  • Dr. Frank Mitloehner, PhD, Professor and Air Quality Extension Specialist with the Department of Animal Science at University of California, Davis

New information on the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) and other resources.
  • Sandy Chalmers, State Executive Director for USDA Wisconsin Farm Service Agency (FSA)
  • Beth Mueller, FSA County Executive Director

Updates on food-bank partnerships and what producers need to do to capture state dollars being offered to the agriculture industry.
  • Chad Vincent, CEO of Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin
  • Randy Romanski, Secretary Designee of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection

Current and future weather patterns; how dairy and crop markets are responding both domestically and globally.
  • Eric Snodgrass, Nutrien Ag Solutions
  • Dan Basse, AgResource Company

The Dairy Signal is a resource intended for everyone in the dairy community. If you have suggestions for future programs, email us at [email protected] . We build each episode of the Dairy Signal with input from members and industry partners.
Dairy currents
GRANTS AVAILABLE THROUGH DAIRY BUSINESS INNOVATION ALLIANCE. A new partnership between the Center for Dairy Research at UW-Madison and Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association, Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA) will provide a total of $220,000 in direct-to-business grants. DBIA’s primary goals are to increase on-farm diversification opportunities, create value-added dairy products such as specialty cheeses, and focus on export opportunities for farm-scale and processor dairy products.

Grants will be awarded for projects in increments up to $20,000; applications are available starting June 15 and due August 14. Selected applicants will be notified on September 4. Click here for examples of applications that could qualify, technical assistance, application information and more.
DAIRY INNOVATION HUB FUNDS SEVEN FACULTY RESEARCH FELLOWSHIPS at the University of Wisconsin­–Platteville to help increase dairy-related research. Known as the “DI3 faculty fellowships” (Dairy industry – impact and innovation – faculty fellowships), selected faculty members will tackle research projects in the Hub’s four priority areas: stewarding land and water resources; enriching human health and nutrition; ensuring animal health and welfare; and growing farm business and communities.

The Dairy Innovation Hub, supported by the state of Wisconsin to the tune of $1 million this year and $7.8 million per year in subsequent years, harnesses research and development at UW-Madison, UW-Platteville and UW-River Falls campuses. The goal for each fellowship – a temporary position for permanent faculty members – is to provide support for specific research projects and ancillary costs, while also ensuring each faculty member has time to conduct the research as well as continued support for their existing teaching responsibilities.

For the full announcement, including details on the seven UW–Platteville faculty fellows selected for Dairy Innovation Hub funding, click here .
PLAN AHEAD FOR SAFE TRAVELS DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC. As restrictions begin to lift around the country, some people are considering rescheduling business travel, family visits or vacations that had been postponed. The Mayo Clinic has compiled a list of recommendations and resources for safe travel, including:
  • Check local restrictions on state and local health department websites before traveling
  • Pack cloth face masks and alcohol-based hand sanitizer in easily accessible locations
  • Prepare food and water to take along to minimize stops
  • Pack disinfectant wipes and disposable gloves for use at hotels, gas pumps or other stops
  • Upon arrival at a hotel room or rental, clean and disinfect all high-touch surfaces
Learn more here .
Book review
BOOK REVIEW: THE INNOVATION STACK: BUILDING AN UNBEATABLE BUSINESS ONE CRAZY IDEA AT A TIME. The co-founder of Square, the small-merchant payment company, shares stories and strategies from the creation of the service and how it not only survived but won against a rival service introduced by Amazon. Author Jim McKelvey includes experiences from the founding of Square as well as historical examples of other companies who have delivered world-changing ideas. He shares his concept of the “Innovation Stack,” a series of problems and solutions that companies must navigate in order to bring new ideas or services to the world. Learn more here .
“Learning and innovation go hand in hand. The arrogance of success is to think that what you did yesterday will be sufficient for tomorrow.”
~William Pollard
Thank you sponsors