Putting Legs Under Ag Export Support

Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) Secretary Randy Romanski and Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation Secretary and CEO Missy Hughes announced today the creation of the new Wisconsin Agricultural Export Advisory Council (WAXC). This council will help guide the initiatives created through the Wisconsin Initiative for Agricultural Exports (WIAE), a collaborative project between DATCP and WEDC to promote the export of Wisconsin’s agricultural and agribusiness products.

“DATCP recognizes the importance of ensuring that stakeholders and policymakers have a seat at the table as we work to increase the export of Wisconsin products,” said DATCP Secretary Randy Romanski. “This council will not only help provide strategic review of the WIAE plan, but also promote WIAE activities, amplify stakeholder export initiatives, and provide a platform to encourage collaboration among the industry.”

The council includes international trade experts from WEDC and DATCP, state legislators, and agriculture organizations and agribusinesses representing crop, dairy, and meat products.

The council will meet at least twice per year, and the first council meeting will take place at 9 a.m. on May 4, 2022 at the WEDC headquarters, 201 West Washington Avenue, Madison, WI 53703. These meetings are open to the public, and are expected to have virtual attendance options. 

The council members and their initial terms are:

Ex Officio:
Sen. Jeff Smith
Sen. Joan Ballweg
Rep. Dave Considine
Rep. Tony Kurtz

At Large:
Craig Briess, CEO, Briess Industries – 2022-2024
Kevin Krentz, President, Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation – 2022-2025

Crop Industry Representatives:
Brandon Bickham, Senior Export Director, Delong – 2022-2025
Brian Cummins, Director, Wisconsin Distillers Guild – 2022-2023
Jackie Fett, Executive Director, Ginseng Board of Wisconsin – 2022-2023
Larry Krueger, Owner, Krueger Lumber – 2022-2024
Charles Wachsmuth, Vice President, Chippewa Valley Bean – 2022-2023
Bob Wilson, Managing Member, The Cranberry Network – 2022-2025
Kevin Lipps, Vice President of International Sales, Seneca – 2022-2024

Dairy Industry Representatives:
Chad Vincent, CEO, Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin – 2022-2025
Ryan Wucherer, Director of Global Sales, MCT Dairies – 2022-2023
Jeff Schwager, CEO, Sartori – 2022-2024

Meat Industry Representatives:
Amy Radunz, President-elect, Wisconsin Beef Council – 2022-2025
Keith Heikes, CEO, GENEX – 2022-2023
Bob Fitzgerald, Vice President of International Sales, Johnsonville – 2022-2024

Wisconsin agricultural exports reached an all-time high of $3.96 billion in 2021. Through the WIAE, DATCP is working collaboratively with WEDC to build on that momentum by promoting Wisconsin agricultural products in the international marketplace. For more information on the WIAE, sign up for email updates and visit the DATCP website.