Wisconsin Breakfast Tradition Continues In Spite Of On-Going Farming Woes
Wisconsin farmers have been dealing with one hardship after another in the last few years. One state wide tradition- ‘The Breakfast On The Farm’ has managed to continue. Despite the constant financial pressures Wisconsin farmers must deal with. There has been an on-going decrease in the sales of milk and other diary products across the country. Plant based diets continue to rise in popularity, traditional farmers that don’t conform to the latest dietary trends, are feeling it in the pocketbook. The yearly summer breakfast gathering that takes place across the state of Wisconsin is a cherished tradition, that very few outside of the state are aware of. On a recent gathering, there was a constant stream of cars hitting the rural roadways all across the state before dawn, to get to a home grown, cooked from scratch, hearty breakfast.
Last year was an especially difficult one for Wisconsin farmers
Last year was an especially difficult one for Wisconsin farmers. In La Crosse County there were 96 dairy farms five years ago, now there are only 60. The county is home to ‘Creamery Creek Holsteins, known as a ‘mega farm’, it spans across 2,200 acres. The farm was named after the creek that runs through the middle of it. During a ‘Breakfast’ planning session earlier this year in the county, committee members came to a difficult decision. No farmer in the county wanted to take on the hosting duties of the breakfast. The committee posted a message on it’s Facebook page, alerting residents that the event may be canceled this year.
We have to do this
Megan Hansen,21, a senior at the University of Wisconsin, read the post on Facebook. Hansen’s family owns the ‘Creamery Creek Holsteins’ farm. Hansen said when she read the post, she sent a text to her father, saying “we have to do this”. Her father, Mark Hansen said when he read the text from his daughter, he was overcome with emotion. He gathered the family and Louisa Peterson, whose family is a co-owner of the farm. They pulled their forces together, did the math, and announced that ‘The Breakfast On The Farm‘ tradition will continue in 2019. The Creamery Farm hosted the event in 2018. Due to ongoing losses of revenue, they felt it would be too much of burden to do it again this year.
That sentiment changed
That sentiment changed at the thought of the event being canceled all together. The overall takeaway from the ’emergency meetings’ the Hansen family had was, with all of the blows the farmers were defending against, to have the event canceled was a step in the wrong direction. After agreeing to host the event at the last minute, put the farm ‘in a serious time crunch’. They were expecting at least 3000 people to show up. The farm employees had to work around the clock to get the farm ready for event. Louisa Peterson was happily doing her part at the breakfast said, ‘if people come and this is the only farm they visit, and the only farmers they meet, it has to be the best on every level.’ Visitors assured the hosts ‘it was the best.”