2016 Farm and Digester Tour Recap
On Tuesday, Sept. 7th, with help from our partners at Clean Lakes Alliance, we put on our 4th Annual Farm and Digester Tour hosted by Clean Fuel Partners, Yahara Pride Farms and Ripp’s Dairy Valley. This year there were roughly 65 people in attendance.
We started the tour at the digester where we were able to see the machinery that runs the plant and better understand the complex process the manure goes through upon entering the plant.
After getting a full scope of the digester, we headed over to the Ripp’s Dairy Valley where Chuck and Gary Ziegler gave us a tour of their operation. Despite the rain, attendees were able to observe the free-stall barns, the sand separator and learn about how manure that is produced on the Ripp’s Dairy Valley is pumped underground to the digester next door.
We would like to thank the Ripp family for kindly hosting the farm tour portion of the day, Clean Fuel Partners for giving us a tour of the digester, and Dane County Farm Technology Days for their generous donation. Everyone thorouroughly enjoyed each aspect of the tour, and none of it would have been possible without your support and contributions. Thank you!
A huge thank-you to all our 2016 tour attendees! It was nice to see some new faces and get to know you better. We appreciate you taking the time out of your day to learn more about agriculture. If you missed the 2016 tour keep in touch for details on the next Farm and Digester Tour. Read below for more on what you can learn during these educational tours.
About the tours:
Integrating conservation management into overall farm planning is increasing substantially within the Yahara watershed. Farm tours are a great way to view an entire farm operation, and learn about innovative land & manure management practices directly from the farm owner. Yahara Pride Farms hosts an annual educational farm tour that features the history, operations and phosphorus-reduction practices of various Yahara Pride Farmers.
The tours entail stops at farm fields to learn about conservation management practices such as buffer strips, cover crops, and other erosion-control methods, as well as manure management practices such as catch basins and lagoons. The tours also highlight the importance of an effective nutrient management plan. Tour participants will leave with a better understanding of best management practices, field and animal operations, and the phosphorus cycle of the Yahara watershed.
Attendees will also learn about Snap-Plus, nutrient management planning software, and how it is used to identify an individual field’s phosphorus index as well as how it provides crop nutrient recommendations.
The farm tours complement Yahara Pride Farms’ educational efforts by promoting awareness of agricultural conservation happening in our watershed and creating connections between the urban and agricultural communities.