Dairy Improvement Grants

Julie Wolcott of Green Wind Farm in Fairfield was a 2014 Dairy Improvement Grantee.

With grant funds donated by Ehrmann Commonwealth Dairy, the Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program provides grants of up to $40,000 on a competitive basis to Vermont dairy farmer members of the St. Albans Co-op and Dairy Farmers of America to make on-farm improvements.

This grant program is a partnership between the Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program, Commonwealth Dairy, the St. Albans Cooperative Creamery, Dairy Farmers of AmericaHousing Vermont, and the Massachusetts Housing Investment Corporation.

Eligible Applicants

Dairy farm members of:

  • Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), or
  • St. Albans Co-operative Creamery

Eligible Projects

Projects that make on-farm capital improvements in the following areas are eligible for funding:

  • Construction, renovation, or upgrades to farm infrastructure
  • Purchase of equipment that will be used frequently; is essential to the business; cannot be rented; and leads to innovative farm practices

Previous Grantees

The Viability Program has awarded almost 50 Dairy Improvement Grants since 2014. The full list of grantees and their project descriptions can be found here. Each year the Viability Program compiles a report on the impacts of these grants. The most recent Dairy Improvement Grant Progress Report can be found here.

Application

To ensure that applications are complete and properly submitted, it is highly recommended that all applicants read the Application Instructions prior to working on the application.

The preferred submission method is through our online application portal: www.surveymonkey.com/r/DIGappNov17 (IMPORTANT: Remember to include a complete Budget Sheet with your online submission.)

A print version of the Dairy Improvement Grant application is available here.

Deadlines

Round 1: Wed., November 15, 2017
Round 2: Wed., February 21, 2018

Dairy Improvement vs. Water Quality Grants?

If you are unsure which grant program to apply for, this information sheet gives a side-by-side comparison of the two grant programs, their dates, eligibility requirements and application requirements.

Questions & Assistance With Your Application

There will be three information sessions open to the public where Viability Program staff will discuss both the grant programs and field questions:

• September 20, 2017. 10a-12p, St. Albans: St. Albans Free Library, 11 Maiden Lane.
• September 21, 2017. 10a-12p, Rutland: Neighborworks of Western Vermont, 110 Marble St.
• September 22, 2017. 10a-12p, Hartland: Hartland Public Library, 153 US-5.

If you have further questions about this grant, please contact Katie Michels at katie@vhcb.org or 828-5587. If you need help putting together an application or business plan, contact Katie as soon as possible – we may be able to set you up with a farm business advisor to help you with the process.