On Monday, June 20 USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Jenny Lester Moffitt and U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) announced that the USDA is providing $20 million in funding for the Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA).
The DBIA is a partnership between the Center for Dairy Research (CDR) and the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) that develops and administers programs providing technical assistance, as well as grants, to dairy farms and businesses in the midwest. The announcement took place at Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese in Waterloo, WI.
The additional $20 million in DBIA funding will support an expansion of the program’s service area to include Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, and Ohio. Currently, the program covers Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.
Funds will also be used to launch new dairy research projects focused on the creation of value-added products at the Center for Dairy Research and to support an innovative mentorship program engaging long-time dairy business leaders and cheesemakers.
Following the funding announcement, Under Secretary Moffitt joined WCMA and CDR for a tour of the newly-renovated CDR research facility on UW–Madison’s campus Tuesday, June 21.