If you have been past or into Darlington’s industrial park, located on State Highways 81 and 23, you may have noticed as recently as last week that four new tall silos have been erected at the Wisconsin Whey Protein Plant.
Wisconsin Whey Protein Company’s construction is a multi-purpose project that involves using all the components of milk, not only in traditional ways such as the making of white cheddar cheese, but using whey for its protein to supplement foods and drinks when people’s diets are low in protein. The plant will also be extracting lactose, which will be used in many unique ways.
Research is discovering the importance of lactose and protein components not only in daily diets but also in early development, immune systems as well as the prevention and treatment of diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s and other physical ailments.
The project is in phase three of an at least five-phase process, which utilizes, revitalizes and recycles most everything used in the construction and production processes, from the equipment to the water. It is truly a “green” project.
Community and state leaders have been visiting as building progresses. They are being versed in the hows and whys of not only construction, but future agricultural and production practices, to be carried out at this facility.
Representatives Dan Smith and Norm Monson of the Department of Agriculture’s Department of Development and Lisa Stout, their international trade specialist, have toured the facility.
The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation’s regional representative, Jennifer Kuderer and Ed White, Southwest Regional Planning Economic Development specialist, along with Jack Sauer, Lafayette County Board chair and Darlington mayor, Dave Bruenig, recognizing the great opportunity and investment being made here, have worked with the company through utilization of low-interest loans, TIF, and revolving loan fund programs.
State Senator Howard Marklein, after touring the facility, said, “I am pleased to see new job growth and the exciting opportunities presented by Wisconsin Whey Protein. I appreciate having been invited by the company and local economic development persons.”
Todd Novak, after touring the facility, stated, “Wisconsin Whey Protein presents incredible opportunities for Darlington and Southwest Wisconsin, offering good jobs and the possibility for many spin-off businesses.”
When the project is completed it is hoped there will be opportunities for public tours so everyone can realize what an exceptional opportunity is being given to Darlington, Lafayette County and Southwest Wisconsin.
Historically, Lafayette County has been noted as the most agriculturally dependent county in Wisconsin, and its neighboring counties are the epitome of diversified agricultural industries. UW Platteville’s Farm, located in Lafayette County, is recognized both nationally and internationally as a state-of-the-art agricultural learning center.
“We truly are being given a tremendous opportunity having Wisconsin Whey Protein locating here,” said Bev Anderson, former city council member. “It will bring jobs at all levels, as well as possible spin-off businesses capable of attracting young families into our community.”