News Release
Release No.STELPRD4021093
ContactKelly Edwards(715) 340.1264
Stevens Point, WI, Jun 27, 2013 --

    @@USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service Acting

    Administrator Lillian Salerno today toured several Wisconsin businesses that received USDA assistance to create jobs and expand economic opportunity for rural residents.

    “These projects are great examples of the Obama Administration's ongoing efforts to create economic and job opportunities in rural areas by ensuring that strategic investments are made in our small towns and cities,” Salerno said. “Rural businesses drive community revitalization by providing products and services to local residents as well as throughout the country and world. Projects like these spur economic development and strengthen communities across the nation.”

    Administrator Salerno toured Intevation Food Group, LLC in Plover and ended the visit at Cow Poo, LLC at Heller Farms in Alma Center. Together, the projects have helped save or create hundreds of area jobs.

    Intevation Food Group produces appetizers and potato products. In 2010, the company partnered with CAP Services – a local community action agency – to obtain financing that would enable Intevation to grow its business. CAP Services was able to secure a $5.9 million USDA Rural Development Business & Industry program loan guarantee through United Farm Credit Services to finance the construction of a plant under a lease-purchase agreement. The partnerships of CAP Services, United Farm Credit Services, and USDA Rural Development enabled Intevation to lease a new 100,000 square foot food processing plant and headquarters in Plover. The funding helped create 48 jobs. The company now employs nearly 200 full-time and seasonal workers.

    The final stop of the tour included a demonstration of an anaerobic digester at Heller Farms. In 2012, Cow Poo, LLC was awarded $1.8 million through USDA’s Rural Energy for America Program to purchase and install an anaerobic digester for Heller Farms. Today, the anaerobic digester processes 50,000 gallons of manure daily, generating approximately 3 million kilowatt hours annually. It enabled Heller Farms to begin selling excess electricity in May 2013.

    Anaerobic digester technology is a proven method of converting waste products, such as manure, into electricity. Anaerobic digesters are in concert with an agreement Secretary Vilsack signed with U.S. dairy producers in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2009 to accelerate the adoption of innovative manure-to-energy projects on American dairy farms.

    President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the President’s leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities. USDA’s investments in rural communities support the rural way of life that stands as the backbone of our American values. President Obama and Agriculture Secretary Vilsack are committed to a smarter use of Federal resources to foster sustainable economic prosperity and ensure the government is a strong partner for businesses, entrepreneurs and working families in rural communities.

    USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, has a portfolio of programs designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America. USDA has made a concerted effort to deliver results for the American people, even as the Department implements sequestration – the across-the-board budget reductions mandated under terms of the Budget Control Act.

    USDA has already undertaken historic efforts since 2009 to save more than $828 million in taxpayer funds through targeted, common-sense budget reductions. These reductions have put USDA in a better position to carry out its mission, while implementing sequester budget reductions in a fair manner that causes as little disruption as possible.


    USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

    If you wish to file a Civil Rights program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form (PDF), found online at, or at any USDA office, or call (866) 632-9992 to request the form. You may also write a letter containing all of the information requested in the form. Send your completed complaint form or letter to us by mail at U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410, by fax (202) 690-7442 or email at