By Crystal Siemers-Peterman
The question “What are you most thankful for?” is frequently asked during this time of the year. Many households across Wisconsin are beginning to plan for the holidays, as the most wonderful time of the year is just around the corner. Homes are filled with love and laughter, and delicious smells waft through the air.
How could you make your holiday celebrations even more special? By giving thanks to local farmers and agribusinesses. You can make sure your dollars stay right here in America’s Dairyland.
Since 1983, the Something Special from Wisconsin program has been trademarked through the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. As you shop the aisles for your holiday ingredients and gifts this year, keep an eye out for the yellow and red Something Special from Wisconsin sticker.
It’s easy to spot: The oval logo has a bright red background and white and yellow lettering, allowing you to easily identify a Something Special from Wisconsin product. This sticker carries a very special meaning — when you see it, you can be assured that at least half of the product ingredients, production or processing has come from right here within our state. With almost 500 companies participating in this special program, there is bound to be something for everyone.
During the holidays, you’re likely to have guests visiting from near and far. Be sure to “meat” their snacking expectations with a Wisconsin cheese and meat platter. Incorporate presliced Patrick Cudahy pepperoni and hard salami snacks for an easy appetizer to pass that everyone will love.
If you’re a visiting guest, don’t forget to thank your host with a Wisconsin wine from Vetro Wine, located in Jefferson. Bill Vetrano continues his family tradition of making delicious wine and incorporating various fresh fruits into unique recipes that showcase quality and craftsmanship. The winery also has a gorgeous patio view that overlooks the woods and marshland in the heart of Jefferson County.
There is a plethora of Something Special from Wisconsin cheeses to choose from, including award-winning cheeses from Saxon Creamery. Located in Cleveland, its principles are fairly simple: Provide ethical treatment of their animals, and conscientious management of their land and the environment. Saxon Creamery’s philosophy of growing lush green pastures for cows to graze gives its milk a unique flavor. The flavors of the grasses are an essential element in developing each of the creamery’s unique cheeses — “Flavor by Nature.”
By purchasing Something Special from Wisconsin products, you are supporting not only local producers and processors, but also the Wisconsin way of life by keeping those dollars in the local economy.
To find more local flavors, visit somethingspecialwi.com, and you can give thanks to local farmers and agribusinesses all year long. Wishing you and your family a safe and happy holiday season!
Siemers-Peterman is the 70th Alice in Dairyland.