Aug 25, 201512:10 PMBlaska's Bring It!
with David Blaska
The road less traveled
(page 2 of 2)
Farm Tech Days this week
Speaking of work, just a shout-out to Wisconsin State Journal reporter Rob Schultz who did a bang-up job capturing the amazing Statz family farm started by two brothers and their spouses, now run by three cousins and into its third generation.
Talk about hard workers and risk takers! Of course, this extended family is hosting Farm Technology Days this Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday east of Sun Prairie — minus Donnie Statz who died very unexpectedly four days after their farm was announced as hosts two years ago. More here.
We grew up with the Statz family and they now farm our land. I want to see for myself the anaerobic manure digester system — unlike the one owned by the county theirs does not blow up — that makes enough electricity to run the operation, equivalent to powering 400 homes. It heats the water used to sanitize the milking parlors. The process also eliminates odors while preventing water pollution from 4,000 cows — 3,000 in the newly constructed complex you’ll see on the tour. The nutrients are still available to fertilize the cropland. Finally, the system produces 28 tons per day of clean, soft bedding for the cows.
Each cow produces 80 pounds of milk a day. You do the math. Golly, I can remember when 40 was a fair-sized herd, milked in stanchion barns. Risk? Milk prices took a recent drop. No guarantees in farming.
I’ve got to see Juno the Robot, which travels the 640-feet length of each of the three new free-style barns (meaning the cows can move around at will) to push feed where the cows can get at it. They also drink warm water — the cows are said to prefer it — recycled from cooling the milk.
This farm event should go a long way to dispel the big city bias against large farming operations. These are the norm in California, Wisconsin’s chief dairying rival.
Haven’t seen this anywhere else
• Wisconsin Watchdog finds that “Legal defense of rogue John Doe agents costs taxpayers nearly $1.2 million.”
• Bonus news: Shirley “Abrahamson’s legal temper-tantrum cost taxpayers $150,000” in lawyers bills.
Quotes of the week
• John Kasich: “So if I were, not president, but if I were king in America, I would abolish all teachers’ lounges, where they sit together and worry about, ‘Woe is us.’
• Facebook friend Pierro Wipperfurth: “U.S. Airman Spencer Stone and the other two Americans who stopped a terrorist attack on a French high-speed train are ‘heroes of the non-Bruce Jenner type.’”
• “All my life I believed that I was circumcised. How could I not have known?” — Patrick Stewart, quoted in the New York Times.
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