Value Added Dairy Grants Program (DBII)

— Written By

Funding Available for Southeast Dairies Looking to Build Processing Capacity
Access and Size of Dairy Business Innovation Grants to be Expanded Starting July 15 

RALEIGH, NC — Beginning July 15, 2021, dairy businesses in Tennessee, North Carolina, and Kentucky will be eligible to apply for a new round of funding to modernize and diversify their operations through the Dairy Business Innovation Initiatives (DBII) program.

The first round of funds for this program was made available to Tennessee dairy farms in 2020 as part of an ongoing grant from the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service. In this new round of DBII funding, the pool of potential recipients has expanded to include dairy businesses in Kentucky and North Carolina as well as Tennessee. The scale of projects that can be funded through this phase of funding has also grown.

Starting July 15, applicants in the three states will have the opportunity to submit project proposals for up to $500,000. The program will support projects of many sizes, but those making requests exceeding $150,000 should operate a licensed dairy farm and/or dairy plant, utilize a large portion of local milk, and their grant proposal should include a robust business plan.

DBII is working in affiliation with North Carolina State University Extension and the Kentucky Dairy Development Council (KDDC) to publicize and evaluate applications for this round of grant funding.

Anyone who has questions about the program or about allowable expenses or purchases should reach out to their state contacts.


Dr. Stephanie Ward, Department of Animal Science

Brittany Whitmire, Department of Ag Resource Economics