Compeer donates 1M for new UW Platteville pilot dairy plant

6/12/23 Compeer donates to UW Platteville dairy pilot plant – Photo by Paul-Erickson/UW Platteville

The University of Wisconsin Platteville received a major contribution for its planned dairy pilot plant and training center.  The one-million-dollar gift is the largest grant ever given by the Compeer Financial Fund for Rural America.

Doctor Tera Montgomery is a Professor of Dairy and Animal Science and the incoming UW-Platteville School of Agriculture Director. She says, “It’s going to be the maker space. It’s going to be about nineteen hundred square feet. We’re also going to have a store and we’re going to have a couple of cheese caves.”

Montgomery says Compeer’s donation is just the beginning. “It’s really hard to know, you know, what our timeline is going to look like. The sooner we can get the funds in place, the sooner we can put the shovels in the ground, and once that happens, things start to roll pretty quickly.”

Montgomery says the 10-million-dollar facility will help bring in researchers and students to develop new value-added dairy products. “I think especially in Southwest Wisconsin this is needed because there’s a lot of small farms that are trying to make a decision of what the next step is going to be and this is a possibility that they can explore, and I think that’s really critical.”

Montgomery says when built, the pilot plant and training center will be located on campus at the Pioneer Farm.  She says the college has wanted to build the facility for a decade, but recently ramped up the fundraising campaign.

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