Wisconsin awards $200,000 in grants to improve dairy processing

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(WFRV) – Fifteen Wisconsin dairy companies will receive Dairy Processor Grants in 2021 from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP). The grants are designed to foster innovation, improve profitability, and sustain the long-term viability of Wisconsin’s dairy processing facilities.

“Dairy processors are key to bolstering Wisconsin’s position as a national and global leader in the dairy industry,” said Randy Romanski, DATCP Secretary-designee. “Our processors need to constantly innovate and adapt to changing times. These grants are designed to help processors accomplish those goals and continue contributing to Wisconsin’s thriving dairy industry.”

A total of $200,000 was available for this year’s Dairy Processor Grants, with a maximum $50,000 allowed for each project. DATCP received 18 grant requests totaling more than $630,000. As part of the 2021-2023 biennial budget, Governor Tony Evers has proposed increasing the available funding for Dairy Processor Grants to $600,000 each year to address the need for additional support to the dairy industry.

Grant recipients are required to provide a match of at least 20 percent of the grant amount. The grant recipients and their planned projects are:

Caprine Supreme – Black Creek
Installation of an additional walk-in cooler for product storage.

Carr Valley Cheese Co. – La Valle
Creation of an equipment room and tank access hallway.

Chalet Cheese – Monroe
Installation of a new separator and cream tank.

Clock Shadow Creamery – Milwaukee
Rental of a packaging machine for two years to increase capacity.

Decatur Dairy – Brodhead
Purchase of engineering involved in building a warehouse that will store product.

Foremost Farms – Baraboo
Hiring of a consultant to explore options for new cheeses and line extensions.

Henning Cheese – Kiel
Installation of an inline packaging machine.

Highfield Farm Creamery – Walworth
Placement of PVC curtain strips, purchasing cheese molds, and the installation of ceiling insulation above three aging rooms, a used COP tank, and a small brine tank.

K&K Cheese – Cashton
Hiring of a consultant to help determine the best type and configuration of LED lighting for facility and purchasing of the lights. 

Maple Leaf Cheese – Monroe
Creation of a marketing program and business framework for including a more diverse production and distribution system.

Nasonville Dairy – Marshfield
Engineering of steam systems, updating of equipment including cheese vats and finishing tables, and the addition of one cheese tower.

Rolling Hills Dairy – Monroe
Diversification to re-define role and offer quality cheese in a farm-to-table theme.

Uplands Cheese – Dodgeville
Purchase of multi-functional block molds and engineering a refurbished elevated vat.

Widmers Cheese – Theresa
Hiring of a consultant to help transition the business to the next generation and upgrade to the mail order system.

Zimmerman Cheese – South Wayne
Hiring of a consultant for a GFSI audit and providing classes for employees to obtain or further cheese making licenses. 

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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