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Farm Industry Needs Support as Pandemic Lingers

WAOW Television

The agriculture industry is a 24/7 operation, so when the pandemic began, there was no halting business for farmers.

At the Wednesday kickoff of the annual Farm Show in Marshfield, that was the common sentiment among vendors seeking to drum up support for the agriculture industry.

"We need to respect our farmers and promote our farmers," said Geno Brueggen, district sales manager at Alforex Seeds.

Promotion has been especially needed in the past year, as the industry experienced the same ebb and flow as others due to the pandemic.

"We've had milk prices that have plummeted 8 dollars. And dairy farmers just have to take that, there's nothing they can do about it," said Mark Kerstner, project manager at Gypsoil.

The difficulties extend beyond just farmers themselves, but to all aspects of the industry.

John Lobner with Marawood Construction Services says business has changed since the pandemic began.

"The supply chain is really broken. Material prices have gone up exponentially since the start of this, so that's been a challenge," he said.

Like all industries, farmers have had to adapt to changes in how they do business.

"The business has changed. We're a little more hands off instead of being face to face with a lot of other people," Brueggen said.

As we move further into 2021, farmers and those in the agriculture industry are hoping for better. They're hoping to drum up support throughout the nation.

"The country needs to take care of their dairy farmers. Whether they will or not we don't know," Kerstner said.

They hope the pandemic helps the community to see just how important the farming industry is at a time when everyone is struggling.

"Even the people in town who were never on a farm, you're part of the farming industry by supporting farmers through the food you eat," Brueggen said.

The farm show continues Thursday from 10 a.m. through 4 p.m.