WCMA Applauds JFC Approval of Additional Ag Export Funds
The Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) applauds members of the legislature’s Joint Finance Committee, who today voted to approve more than $500,000 in funding to support the continued work of the Wisconsin Initiative for Agricultural Exports (WIAE), a program launched earlier this year at the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection with bipartisan array of supporters, led by Governor Tony Evers, State Senator Joan Ballweg (R-Markesan), and State Representative Tony Kurtz (R-Wonewoc).
“Wisconsin cheesemakers take great pride in producing some of the world’s best dairy products, and their potential for sales growth in Southeast Asia and the Middle East is boundless,” said WCMA Executive Director John Umhoefer. “We are grateful for the state’s support as we work to expand dairy processors’ customer bases and create a stronger, more stable dairy industry.”
Off to an impactful start, WIAE is supporting Wisconsin dairy processors’ participation in key trade shows and buyers’ missions, and in export education for the industry. WIAE monies are further supporting programs tailored to specific agricultural sectors, including one run by WCMA which offers free consultative services to dairy processors interested in starting or expanding their export endeavors. WCMA’s effort also features an export workshop, planned for later this year, and an online library of export resources, including template forms, guidance documents, and a database of contacts.
“The state’s return on this investment will show in increased revenues, but also in the family-supporting job opportunities and community support cheesemakers provide,” said Umhoefer. “We’re thankful for leaders like Governor Evers, Senator Ballweg and Representative Kurtz, who share our vision and a spirit of partnership in the work ahead.”