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An old farm neighbor and friend passed this week, too soon, well before any of us who loved him were ready to let him go. Like my brother Alan, who walked on a couple of years ago, Dennis Fuller was only 67 years old. We were farm boys together in the 1960s. We played softball during Vacation Bible School behind the church in Loyd, Wisconsin. We hunted mushrooms, fished and swam in Willow Creek, picked black berries and apples, wrestled and played football for Ithaca.

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A new disease-resistant potato called “CIP-Matilde” has been released by the International Potato Center and the Crop Trust. It was developed by farmers, breeders and scientists in Peru who identified wild potatoes with resistance to disease. Breeders then incorporated the resistance into cultivated varieties. The new potato withstands late blight, a disease that can destroy a potato crop in a matter of weeks.

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While much is still unknown about what tax changes may or may not be included in any Congressional tax legislation this year, it appears most of the scary stuff for farmers is off the table as the country heads toward Halloween.

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Making Midwestern agriculture more resilient by diversifying farms, marketing and the agricultural landscape is the aim of a new $10 million project that’s being funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture. The project is led by Purdue University with several partner institutions involved.

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OPINION  The American Farmland Trust is proud to stand alongside 164 other organizations and corporations in calling for Congress to maintain the $28 billion proposed for conservation programs in the reconciliation package. This funding recognizes the critical role that our nation’s farmers and ranchers can play in combatting climate change. It represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to provide producers with the tools they need to protect their land, increase resilience to extreme weather, sequester carbon and reduce emissions – all while improving their soils and profitability.

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Suddenly, there is an incentive to store grain. Just a few weeks ago the market was telling farmers to sell their grain now. There was little carry in that market. That has changed.

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OPINION  National Farmers Day, celebrated Oct. 12, is an opportunity for all of us to recognize and celebrate the impacts and contributions of Wisconsin farmers. Our state is fortunate to be home to more than 64,000 farms on about 14.3 million acres that produce a wide variety of excellent-quality products. Those products include dairy, ginseng, cranberries and other specialty crops.

When it comes to farm policy, nothing is bigger than the farm bill. But the farm bill is so big it can be difficult for farmers and consumers alike to really understand. And that has led to more than a few debates about government subsidies.