Dairy Processor Innovation Grant

Grant Overview

The Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NE-DBIC) announces the availability of funds through the Dairy Processor Innovation Grant program, which will provide grants for dairy processors to better position their businesses long-term. Key dairy consumers are shifting their purchasing choices to those that support small businesses, rural communities, and have direct, positive impacts to the climate. Leading reasons consumers are switching brands include a desire to support local businesses and companies that share their values as well as a perception that products are better quality, natural/organic, and more environmentally sustainable. Projects funded through this program will support longterm business investments that increase dairy processor business consumer appeal and marketability of value-added dairy products. 

This grant will fund a wide range of projects. Projects may address improvements in topics such as: sourcing, product development, transportation/distribution, marketing/supply chain, operations, employee welfare, consumer experience, utilization of materials or systems that reduce carbon footprintand, and beyond.  

Grants are available to applicants in all Northeast states: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Grants will range from $75,000 to $250,000 with a 25% (cash or in-kind) match commitment required. Total funds available: $1,000,000. 

This grant round will include a two-step application process. Following the review of pre-applications, a subset of applicants will be invited to submit a full application.  

**Applications for this program will open in June 2022**


Applicants eligible for these funds must fall into at least one of the following categories:

  1. Dairy processors that transform raw milk into an edible product with milk sourced from the Northeast region. Processors must be licensed in a way that their product can be sold across state lines. 
  2. Dairy producer association/dairy council which represents and promotes dairy products/dairy businesses of the Northeast.
  3. Supply chain business (e.g. distributor or retail operation) based/headquartered in the Northeast that partners with at least one dairy processor, as defined above. Supply chain businesses must source dairy products and purchases from and sell to businesses primarily in the Northeast.

How to Apply

  1. Review the full Dairy Processor Innovation Grant (request for applications) for the complete details on eligible projects/applicants and the full application process when it becomes available in June 2022.
  2. Register in WebGrants (may take up to two business days).
  3. Complete your pre-application in WebGrants using our Application Guide. Estimated pre-application deadline is August 2022. 
  4. For those applicants invited to submit a full application, the estimated full application deadline is October 2022. 

Have a Question about this Grant?

Have a question? Contact Kathryn Donovan.

Northeast DBIC Staff

Laura Ginsburg, Center Lead
(802) 522-2252 

Kathryn Donovan, Center Coordinator 
(802) 585-4571

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Contact Information

Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets

116 State Street
Montpelier, Vt 05620-2901


Program Contacts

  • Media Inquiries                      802.622.4662
  • Licensing & Registration        802.828.2436
  • Business Development          802.828.1619
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