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Dairy innovation research dollars to benefit several Midwestern states

An expert at the Center for Dairy Research says the recently announced additional funding for the Dairy Business Innovation Initiatives will help farmers and processors develop new products and reach new markets. 

Tom Guerin tells Brownfield the 80-million dollars from the American Rescue Plan will be divided between Wisconsin, Vermont, Tennessee, and California.  He says the roughly 20-million-dollars going through the University of Wisconsin Center for Dairy Research will impact several Midwestern states. “Our award here, we cover a five-state region between ourselves, Illinois, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Iowa so we service farms and small to medium-sized processors across that region.”

Guerin says, by and large, there are two main avenues for using the dairy initiative funding. “The first is a direct grant out to farmers, small processors who are looking to diversify or add value to their product, or even look at exports for example. The second avenue then is around technical assistance.”

The Center for Dairy Research received 6.1 million last year and in 2020 from the Farm Bill.  Additional dairy research dollars might become available later this year through the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service if Congress appropriates the money.

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