The keynote speaker during the closing session of the Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin annual business conference on Thursday had a lot in common with his audience. That’s because Green Bay Packer Wide Receiver Jordy Nelson is a farm kid himself, growing up on his father’s crop and livestock operation in Kansas.
“Farming gives you a lot of responsibilities and teaches you hard work. As a farm kid, you did what you were told to do on the farm and you did things the right way,” Nelson told a room full of 1,500 producers and industry officials. “I can honestly say the long days prepared me for training camp.”
He shared how attending a small rural school in Kansas didn’t generate a lot of attention from universities and college scouting for football players who would be awarded scholarships. When Kansas State University, located about 30 minutes of his hometown, showed an interest, he accepted the fact that he would be a walk-on as a safety, but found little playing time until his senior year. Moved to being a wide receiver, Nelson exploded as a player and earned All-American status.
While he said he didn’t plan to watch the NFL draft that year, he said he did watch the draft, sitting with family and friends at the back of the room in his mom’s restaurant in his hometown.
“I can remember that clearly,” he stated. “I was asked if I wanted to play for the Green Bay Packers. It was a dream come true.”
Producers from 21 states and four countries attended this year’s annual meeting. Ag Economist Dan Basse noting that milk prices are projected to be up between 6-8% over last year as the dairy export market is very strong right now and feed costs are going down.
“Fluid milk consumption in other countries is trending up as people are beginning to make more money in industrial nations like China,” Basse said. “And with red meat prices being so high, dairy products have become the cheapest source of protein on the table.”
Meanwhile, members elected one new individual and chose two incumbents to the PDPW board of directors. Jeremy Natzke of Greenleaf will begin serving a three-year term, while Charlie Crave, Waterloo, and Kay Zwald, Hammond were re-elected. Other board members include Mitch Breunig, Sauk City; Brian Forrest, Stratford; Marty Hallock, Mondovi; Walter Meinholz, DeForest; Linda White, Reedsburg; and Keith York, Lake Geneva.
PDPW also welcomed two newly appointed advisors to the board. They include Steve Kelm, professor, University of Wisconsin-River Falls; and Steve Schwoerer, dairy specialist with Badgerland Financial Services.
Source: Wisconsin Ag Connection