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About DBIA

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (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 Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. To learn more about applying for a DBIA grant, click here.

DBIA Goals

The overall DBIA goal is to find ways to improve the profitability of dairy farmers and processors. This goal is in alignment with the stated objectives of the initiative.

  • Increase on-farm diversification opportunities
  • Create value-added dairy products such as specialty cheeses
  • Focus on export opportunities for farm-scale and processor dairy products

DBIA History

The 2018 U.S. Farm Bill created the Dairy Business Innovation Initiative to assist dairy farmers and dairy processors in creating new revenue streams through farm diversification and the creation of “higher value” food and beverage products containing a dairy ingredient. In 2019, the USDA requested applications that resulted in the selection of three locations as regional hosts for this initiative:

The 2018 Farm Bill lasts for five years.

For each year an award is made, the three regional centers of excellence will receive an equal amount of funding.

The terms of the award require a minimum of 50% of the funds to be distributed as grants to dairy based farms and processors.

DBIA News

WCMA, CDR Cheer USDA Announcement of $20M in Supplemental Funding for Dairy Business Innovation Alliance to Expand Services

The Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) and the Center for Dairy Research (CDR) today applauded the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) direction of $20 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) monies to supplement the work of the Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA). 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. Dairy businesses in broadened service area will also see a boost in direct-to-business grant funding available through DBIA.

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DBIA Announces Upcoming Dairy Industry Impact Grant Coming July 2022

Dairy product manufacturers in five Midwestern states can prepare now to apply for a new, $1 million round of grants to be administered by the Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA), a partnership between the Center for Dairy Research (CDR) and the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA).

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DBIA Announces Dairy Business Builder Grant Recipients

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA) announced the thirty eight companies and cooperatives which, via a competitive review process, have been selected to receive grants totaling over $1.7 million to support dairy farmers and processors. (5/19/2022)


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Historic USDA Investment of $80 Million in Dairy Business Innovation Initiatives

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance cheered U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack’s direction of $80 million in American Rescue Plan funds to Dairy Business Innovation Initiatives (DBII) first championed by U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) in the 2018 Farm Bill. Four regional DBII programs, including the Dairy Business Innovation Alliance led by WCMA and the Center for Dairy Research (CDR) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, will be eligible to apply for up to $20 million in 2022.

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Application Period Now Open for Dairy Business Builder Grants

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.

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DBIA Announces Dairy Business Builder Grant Opens February 2022

Small- to medium-sized dairy farmers, entrepreneurs, and processors in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin can prepare now to apply for a new, $1 million round of grants administered by the Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA). This advance notice allows applicants to develop business plans, secure vendor quotes, and take advantage of webinars and other resources available on the DBIA website.

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Dairy Business Innovation Alliance Announces 2021 Dairy Industry Impact Grant Recipients

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA) announced the four companies and cooperatives which, via a competitive review process, have been selected to receive grants totaling over $600,000 to develop an innovative idea or tackle a challenge with the potential to advance the dairy industry. (11/8/2021)

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Dairy Business Innovation Alliance Announces 2021 Dairy Business Builder Grant Recipients

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA) announced the 26 companies and cooperatives which, via a competitive review process, have been selected to receive grants totaling $1.19 million. (7/1/2021)

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DBIA is Supporting Big Ideas in Dairy with New “Industry Impact” Grant Program

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA) is seeking to support dairy product manufacturers that want help developing an innovative idea or tackling a challenge with the potential to advance the dairy industry.

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DBIA to Award $1M in Next Round of Grants

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA), a partnership between the Center for Dairy Research (CDR) and Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA), will be distributing $1 million in its next grant cycle.

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Baldwin, Congress Allocate $22 Million for Dairy Business Innovation Initiatives

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) helped pass a spending package in Congress that allocates $22 million in funding for the Dairy Business Innovation Initiatives in 2021.

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DBIA Awards $230K to Midwest Dairy Farms and Businesses

The Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA), a partnership between the Center for Dairy Research (CDR) and Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) announced the 13 companies and cooperatives which, via a competitive review process, have been selected to receive grants totaling $230,000. (9/14/20)

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USDA Awards DBIA $6.13M

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that the Center for Dairy Research and Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) have been awarded $6.13 million to support continuation of the Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA), serving Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota and Wisconsin. (8/20/20)

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