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The Wisconsin School for Beginning Dairy and Livestock Farmers: Keeping the Dream of Farming Alive

As older farmers retire, fewer young farmers are stepping in to take their place. The number of beginning farmers dropped 20 percent in the last five-year census period, and the average US farmer now tops 58 years of age. more

CIAS Mini-Grants Support Graduate Student Research in Sustainable Agriculture

CIAS supports innovative graduate student research addressing the challenges faced by small- and medium-sized farms and food businesses. Awarded annually, our competitive mini-grants aid students as they initiate their research in sustainable agriculture and food systems. more


Announcing the 2019 Market Farm Madness Champion!

Hoophouse is your 2019 Market Farm Madness champion! They withstood high winds, late snow storms and controversy over cost share payments to win the tournament. more

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Organic Agriculture in Wisconsin: 2017 Status Report

Posted February 2017

Wisconsin is a national leader in organic agriculture. Wisconsin excels in both the number of farms involved in organic agriculture and the breadth of organic products raised and sold.

According to data from the USDA National Organic Program (NOP), Wisconsin had 1,334 organic farms in 2015, nearly doubling over the last 10 years. This puts our state in a good position to participate in the growing market for organic food, both in the U.S. and across the globe.

Wisconsin remains the second state in the nation in total number of organic farms, second only to California. Wisconsin ranks third behind California and Montana in the number of organic acres, and experienced a 16.9 percent increase in organic acreage from 2008 to 2014. Wisconsin ranked fifth in dollar value of organic sales in 2014.

Despite these encouraging production and sales figures, organic processing is a bottleneck for growth in this industry, particularly for small-and mid-scale farms and businesses. While organic dairy processing in the state is generally well established, processing in other sectors, including grain, livestock and vegetables, hasn’t kept pace with production.

Read the full report (PDF)