MADISON, WIS. – The Center for Dairy Research (CDR) and Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA), operating partners for the Dairy Business Innovation Alliance (DBIA), announced the application process for the next round of Dairy Business Builder grants will open on Feb. 5.

The upcoming DBIA grants provide reimbursements of as much as $100,000 to support diversifying on-farm activity, creating value-added products, enhancing dairy byproducts and creating or enhancing dairy export programs.

Small to medium sized dairy farms, manufacturers and processors that operate in DBIA’s 11-state region of Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin may apply for the business grants.

CDR director John Lucey said previous rounds of grants have helped small businesses grow and diversify.

“This program helps strengthen our cheese and dairy industry by supporting more value-added products and diversification,” Lucey said.

Added WCMA executive director John Umhoefer: “These grants are ideal for any dairy business owner looking to expand and improve their business. We look forward to seeing more innovative funding proposals this spring.”

More information on the grants will be available online at the DBIA website. What’s more, interested dairy companies have the option to attend a “helpful hints” webinar on Feb. 7. Organizers from DBIA said the webinar will be recorded and accessible throughout the application period, which closes at 5 pm CT on April 4.