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Rick Worthington Farm Aid 2019
by Rick Worthington, click here for bio

Program: Farm and Ranch Report
Date: September 12, 2019

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Farm Aid 2019

Farm Aid is set for next weekend to promote family farming.

The music festival backed by Neil Young, Willie Nelson and other musicians has raised $57 million for farmers since it began in 1985.

On Saturday, Sept. 21, musicians and fans will gather at the Alpine Valley Music Theatre in East Troy.

Perry Brown, executive director of the Michael Fields Agricultural Institute says farmers have struggled this year with low crop prices and a wet spring, and Farm Aid provides an opportunity to put a spotlight on their plight.

"I think the biggest thing that they do is just drawing attention to the issues out there in agriculture, especially for family farmers and for small farms across the country,” Brown said. “It's important to draw attention to those issues, and a lot of times it's something that people don't pay a lot of attention to."

The Trump administration has tried to help farmers, and even authorized two financial packages adding up to $28 billion.

Brown said the event is an opportunity to showcase agriculture in Wisconsin.

"From a field-crop standpoint and from a dairy standpoint, and also we have a huge group of family farms here in this area that are practicing sustainable and organic agriculture,” he said.

Brown said resources from Farm Aid have helped his organization with a program that advises farmers on how to apply for value-added producer grants and other federal programs.

This year's Farm Aid is sold out but can be streamed online at farmaid.org.

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