Dairy Promotions Association distributes awards, scholarships

by Verla Peichl

PLYMOUTH – The Sheboygan County Dairy Promotions Association recently held their annual meeting and appreciation dinner at the Amore, Plymouth. The event is opened with a social time and cheese tasting. There is always a variety of new flavored cheeses to taste and enjoy.

The Dairy Promotions Association awards scholarships to applicants who are interested in continuing their education in the dairy field, and they needed to explain the importance of the dairy industry and its product promotion. Each applicant receives $500. This year three students were awarded the scholarship.

Hannah Ruetten, age 17, Plymouth, is currently attending Plymouth High School and plans to attend the University of Wisconsin-River Falls where she will be studying Pre-Veterinary; Biology, Chemistry and Animal Science. She is a member of the Parnell Pals 4-H Club and volunteers her time in a variety of dairy promotion projects.

“Plymouth was once known as `the cheese capital of the world,’” Ruetten wrote, “and today hosts many of the nation’s largest cheese processing companies; the dairy industry is a critical part of Sheboygan County’s and the nation’s economy.

“Dairy products provide both nutritional benefits to the consumer and involve many people and businesses,” Ruetten continued.

“Farm owners and workers, farm supplies/machinery manufacturers or stores, transportation companies, dairy product factories or processors and businesses that sell dairy products are all involved in production and distribution,” Ruetten said.

“Dairy products are not only nutritious, but great tasting,” Ruetten added, “and their production and promotion creates many jobs that in turn stimulate our economy.”

Matthew Ramel, age 17, Random Lake, is currently attending Random Lake High School and plans to attend Fox Valley Technical College where he will study Farm Operation. He has been active in the FFA where he displayed his qualities of leadership.

“The dairy industry has impacted me throughout my whole life,” Ramel said. “While on the farm, I have learned many life lessons.

“We have a farm of about 140 cows in lactation,” Ramel explained. “It may be small, but it has granted me the great pleasure of learning and contributing my abilities to the dairy industry.

“My hopes are to contribute more to the dairy industry by expanding and improving the technology on our farm,” Ramel added, “and by achieving this, our dairy industry will be stronger and better supported.”

Erica Marten, age 17, Elkhart Lake, is currently attending Howards Grove High School. She plans to use her scholarship money to attend the Farm and Industry Short Course, Madison, where she will be studying Dairy Farm Management. She has also been active in the local FFA where she volunteered for multiple events.

“The dairy industry is an invaluable industry to our society and is an important part of my life,” Marten said.

“Growing up on a dairy farm has taught me to always work hard for what I believe in, and never give up,” Marten continued.

“The dairy industry provides consumers with quality products,” Marten added. “Today’s societies have been heavily promoting for a healthier population and the increased use of dairy products as a part of this. This campaign supports the need to continue and advance the promotion of dairy products in a healthy lifestyle.”

The Friend of the Association Award was presented to Jim Stemper. He was a director of the local Sheboygan County association and he served on the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board for 18-plus years. His dedication, time and effort have not been unnoticed in his promotion of the dairy industry.

The 2011 Sheboygan County Breakfast on the Farm will be held June 18 at Devin Acres, Elkhart Lake, owned and operated by Kevin and Debra Kirsch.

Devin Acres is located on Primrose Lane, Elkhart, and they are a fifth-generation farm. It was established in 1872 and the Kirsches are milking approximately 220 cows.

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