The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.

The Wisconsin Dairy Alliance and Venture Dairy Cooperative submitted comments to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources highlighting major concerns with a proposed rule that could have serious consequences for farmers.

The proposed rule requires that pesticide applicators obtain a DNR-approved lake management plan prior to applying pesticide to treat invasive plants on lakes. This new requirement applies even if only EPA-approved pesticides are used and the applicator follows all label requirements.

“Our organizations are deeply concerned by the precedent set by this rulemaking. If this rule is successful, it seems plausible (if not likely) that the next step for DNR is to require DNR-approved plans before applying pesticide on crops. This would be devastating to Wisconsin’s farmers,” said Kim Bremmer, Executive Director of Venture Dairy Cooperative.

“The EPA has already investigated and approved the application of these pesticides. Farmers don’t need any more unnecessary regulatory hoops to jump through from the DNR,” said Cindy Leitner, President of Wisconsin Dairy Alliance.

The organizations have requested that the rule be sent back to staff for further work to ensure farmers will not be impacted.