Application Period Now Open for Dairy Business Builder Grants

Posted By: Grace Atherton WCMA News,

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA) is now accepting applications for its Dairy Business Builder Grant. Dairy farmers, entrepreneurs, and processors in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin are eligible to apply. Grants of up to $50,000 will be awarded through a competitive process.

Grant applications and more information about the program are available on the DBIA website. Applications are due March 31 at 5:00 p.m. (CT). Eligible projects will include dairy farm diversification, the creation of value-added dairy products, enhancing dairy by-products or commodities, and efforts to market dairy products for export.

“The Dairy Business Builder Grant has provided a meaningful boost to diverse dairy enterprises employing creative strategies to take their businesses to the next level. This popular grant is back for another round and we look forward to seeing a variety of strong proposals,” said John Umhoefer, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA), which partners with the Center for Dairy Research to administer the grants.

“These grants will help our small dairy businesses expand their capacity, take on new value-added products and grow stronger in these challenging times” said John Lucey, CDR Director.

Interested applicants are encouraged to view DBIA’s “Helpful Hints” Webinar, now available online at The webinar offers information on the grant program, an overview of the application process, and tips for a competitive application.

In 2020, $230,000 was distributed to 13 dairy companies and cooperatives in the inaugural round of Dairy Business Builder Grants. In 2021, DBIA awarded Dairy Business Builder Grants totaling more than $1 million to 25 dairy companies and cooperatives.

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA) is a partnership between the CDR and WCMA that develops and administers programs providing technical assistance as well as grants to dairy farms and businesses in the Upper Midwest.