Say Cheese: It Makes Wisconsin Great

A variety of cheese. Wisconsin ranks no. 1 in cheese production in the U.S. 

Holy cow!

In the land of cheeseheads, dairy is a big business. Just how big?

Well, Wisconsin is home to 9,236 dairy farms with 1.28 million cows – more than any other state in the country, according to Wisconsin Department of Agriculture. Ninety-seven percent of the farms are family-owned, with an average of 138 cows per farm.

Dairy means more to Wisconsin than citrus to Florida or potatoes to Idaho.” – Ben Brancel, Wisconsin Department of Agriculture

Dairy is the largest segment of the state’s agriculture, employing 78,900 people. Of the estimated $88.3 billion economic impact from agriculture, $43.4 billion is generated by the dairy industry.

“Dairy means more to Wisconsin than citrus to Florida or potatoes to Idaho,” said Ben Brancel, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture.

Wisconsin’s $43.4 billion economic impact, he pointed out, “compares to $9 billion of Florida citrus or $6.7 billion of Idaho potatoes.”  Long Hwa-shu

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