More than 60,000 people are expected to attend this year’s Wisconsin Farm Technology Days hosted by the Statz Bros. Inc. farm in the Town of Sun Prairie Aug. 25-27.
The agricultural event will highlight how today’s farm is evolving to keep up with food production in the state.
There will be 30 minute farm tours offered continuously each day, field demonstrations, more than 600 commercial exhibitors, technology information offered in the new Innovation Square, educational sessions, food, children’s activities and musical entertainment.
The University of Wisconsin-Extension staff will be on hand to discuss the latest research on cover crops, specialty crops, precision ag, animal care, field crops, vegetables, and horticulture.
Dane County is the state’s most productive agricultural county. It ranks first in both corn grain and corn silage production, second in soybean production and third in wheat production. Ag-related sales amount to $3.45 billion. Ag-related employment accounts for 16,767 jobs.
Wisconsin Farm Technology Days is one of the largest farm shows in the nation. And unlike other shows, it is one of the few that is run almost entirely by volunteers.
This year’s theme is “Capitalizing on Agriculture.”
The last time Wisconsin Farm Technology Days was held in Dane County was 1986. In 2009, the agricultural show was held on the Crave Brothers Farm, located outside of Waterloo in Dodge County.
This year’s show is being held on the third generation Statz family farm with a 4,000-head milking herd and 6,000 acres in crops. The farm employs more than 100 workers.
People will have the opportunity to see the inner workings of the farm, including a new double-50 parallel parlor, freestall barns and the farm’s recently constructed second manure digester.
Statz Bros Inc. installed their first manure digester in 2009. They practice sustainability through anaerobic digestion and solids separation along with producing electricity. The digester produces about twice as much electricity as the farm needs.
The farm has a 750,000-gallon manure pit and distributes the slurry within a three-mile radius of their buildings by hoses. The separated manure solid is used for bedding.
Animals on the Statz farm are producing an average of 80 pounds of milk per day. Their milk is marketed through Dairy Farmers of America and sold by Dean Foods.
Richard and Veronica Statz, and Donnie and Shirley Statz purchased the first 80 acres of their farm in 1966. The farm was incorporated in 1971 and has grown over the years. The farm is currently operated by three generations of Statz family members, Richard and Veronia Statz, and their sons, Troy and Wes with their wives Renee and Andrea; Shirley Statz and her son, Joe with is wife Lisa and their children, Zach, Austin and Tia.
Members of the Ixonia Vintage Tractor Club are planning a tractor parade to the site, starting at Waterloo Firemen’s Park. More than 50 tractors are expected to make the trip from Waterloo to the Farm Technology Days site at 5875 County Highway VV, Marshall on Sunday, Aug. 23.
The show will feature a heritage equipment display that will allow show attendants to travel back in time and view farm tractors, implements, and steam engines.
Show hours will be Tuesday, Aug. 25 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 26 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Thursday, Aug. 27 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Admission is $6, with those under the age of 12 admitted free. Parking is also free.