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Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center

Assessment of Dairy Farms Interested in Supplying Milk to Local & Regional Specialty Cheesemakers

The Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NE-DBIC) engaged Karen Karp & Partners (KK&P)—a food systems and economic development consultancy with deep experience working throughout the Northeast and in the dairy sector—to engage small-scale dairy farmers in southern Vermont and central-western Massachusetts who might be interested supplying raw milk directly to specialty cheesemakers in order to understand the specific conditions under which they would be able to engage in these types of localized and direct business relationships, and to diversify and strengthen their array of income streams outside of commodity milk markets in the process. NE-DBIC additionally tasked KK&P with interviewing cohorts of specialty cheesemakers and interested dairy farmers within the identified study region in order to set the stage for NE-DBIC to tangibly and expeditiously connect suitable and interested dairy producers directly to specific specialty cheesemakers.

Dairy Food Safety & Certification Grants Awarded

May 6, 2022

The Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NEDBIC) was able to support 12 projects being taken on by different farmers and processors throughout the region for a total of $290,540.09. This program helps dairy farmers, processors, and/or producer associations take actionable steps to improve the safety of dairy products and improve marketabilit

Creating a Culture of Farm Safety

May 4, 2022

The University of Vermont (UVM) was awarded a $350,000 grant from the Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center to develop and deliver a dairy farmworker safety training program in conjunction with regional support organizations. The training will be responsive to needs identified by the farmworker community and offered in both English and Spanish

2022 Dairy Marketing & Branding Services RFA

The Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NE-DBIC) announces the availability of funds through the Dairy Marketing and Branding Services Grant Program, which will provide grants for established value-added dairy processors and producer associations to access professional marketing and branding services to elevate value-added dairy businesses. Projects funded by this grant will increase the exposure and promotion of regionally produced dairy products guided by marketing/branding professionals. Funded projects will increase consumer awareness of products, develop market channels and distribution opportunities to increase product placement, support innovative strategies to increase consumption, and/or increase business revenues. Additionally, up to 25% of the grant funds may be used to implement the strategy and/or content developed by the contractor. Grants are available to applicants in all Northeast states: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

Report: Distribution Capacity Study

In 2021 the Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NE-DBIC) retained the food system consultancy KK&P (Karen Karp & Partners) to identify opportunities to strengthen the region’s value-added dairy distribution network and increase value-added dairy producers’ ability to leverage it, in order to bring the region’s unique and delicious products to stores, cafeterias, restaurants, and households throughout New England and the country. The work plan for this project occurred in two phases.

Webinar: Distribution Capacity Key Findings

KK&P discusses their key findings and strategies developed through this extensive examination of the Northeast dairy supply chain. Topics of supply chain brittleness, workforce, investments in distributors, marketing as a region, and supporting distribution readiness were discussed in the webinar below.

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