Farm succession planning workshop set for Doniphan

DONIPHAN — Aurora Cooperative and Nebraska Extension are teaming up to provide succession and estate planning workshops tailored to address the specific issues facing farmers, ranchers, and ag landowners.

This 3-part workshop series is designed to equip owners with information and resources to plan for the successful transition of their farms and ranches to the next generation.

Speakers for this workshop will include:

- Allan Vyhnalek, Extension educator working in farm succession/transfer (Workshop 1-3)

- Kara Ronnau, executive general counsel with Aurora Cooperative (Workshop 1)

- Keith Napolitano, Attorney with the University of Nebraska Foundation (Workshop 2)

- Brandon Dirkschneider, certified financial planner and certified farm and ranch transition coordinator (Workshop 3)

Workshop topics include:

- Estate planning basics.

- State, federal, and real property tax issues.

- Farm family dynamics and communication.

- Incorporating the right estate planning tools—including documents and insurance—to meet your goals.

The Doniphan workshop series will be held July 17, August 7 and August 16 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Doniphan Area Event Center. Lunch will be provided. The program will be free, but registration is requested to ensure proper food, supplies and handouts for participants. Register by contacting Traci Menke at 402-694-7682 or online at or

For more information or assistance about the program, please contact Allan Vyhnalek, Extension educator, Nebraska Extension at (402) 472-1771 or e-mail or Traci Menke, member services representative, Aurora Cooperative at (402) 694-7682 or email

Ricketts proclaims June as Dairy Month in Nebraska

Gov. Pete Ricketts has proclaimed June as Dairy Month in Nebraska. Dairy Month is celebrated in Nebraska each June to highlight the importance of Nebraska’s dairy farmers to agriculture and the state’s economy.

“Dairy farmers in Nebraska make significant contributions to our state’s economic growth as well as high-quality milk for our families. Thanks to their good work, Nebraska is a top-10 state in both production and revenue per dairy cow,” said Ricketts. “Our state’s plentiful feed supplies and abundant water resources, along with our pro-agriculture policies, make Nebraska an ideal home for dairies.”

Nebraska is a net exporter of milk, sending 2 million pounds out of state each day. Thanks to the state’s central location, milk produced locally can reach almost every corner of the continental United States within two days. Nebraska’s cow numbers are up 7% since 2014, and dairy farmers anticipate additional growth in the coming years.

Kris Bousquet of the Nebraska State Dairy Association (NSDA) touted the state as a great place for dairy processors to do business.

“A processor who comes to Nebraska will have immediate access to milk produced right here, and dairy farmers will be thrilled to reduce their transportation costs in the process,” he said. “The next dairy processor to stake a claim in Nebraska is going to have the pick of the litter in terms of location and the opportunity to connect with dairy farmers.”

A team of organizations have joined forces to lead the state’s Grow Nebraska Dairy initiative. These include the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA), Nebraska Department of Economic Development, Nebraska Public Power District, the University of Nebraska, the NSDA, and the Alliance for the Future of Agriculture in Nebraska.

“Nebraska is a great place to milk cows,” said NDA Director Steve Wellman. “We have abundant, high-quality feed and water resources that lead to a top-ten level of milk production per cow. Nebraska is ready to grow and add value to our agricultural products through the dairy sector.”

To learn more about the potential for dairy production and processing in Nebraska, visit or contact Kris Bousquet at or 531-207-4291.

Farm Service Agency County Committee nominations open June 14

USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will begin accepting nominations for county committee members on Friday, June 14. Agricultural producers who participate or cooperate in an FSA program may be nominated for candidacy for the county committee. Individuals may nominate themselves or others as a candidate.

“I encourage America’s farmers, ranchers and forest stewards to nominate candidates to lead, serve and represent their community on their county committee,” FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce said. “There’s an increasing need for diverse representation including underserved producers, which includes beginning, women and minority farmers and ranchers.”

Committees make important decisions about how federal farm programs are administered locally. Their input is vital on how FSA carries out disaster programs, as well as conservation, commodity and price support programs, county office employment and other agricultural issues.

Nationwide, more than 7,700 dedicated members of the agricultural community are serving on FSA county committees. The committees are made up of three to 11 members and typically meet once a month. Members serve three-year terms.

Producers should visit their local FSA office to find out how to get involved in their county’s election. Check with your local USDA service center to see if your local administrative area is up for election this year. Organizations, including those representing beginning, women and minority producers, also may nominate candidates.

To be considered, a producer must sign an FSA-669A nomination form. The form and other information about FSA county committee elections are available at All nomination forms for the 2019 election must be postmarked or received in the local FSA office by Aug. 1, 2019.

Election ballots will be mailed to eligible voters beginning Nov. 4, 2019. An election timeline and other information can be found at this link.

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