Cover photo for Minnesota Dairy Business Planning Grant

Minnesota Dairy Business Planning Grant

Minnesota Department of Agriculture

Grants cover 50 percent of the cost to hire a qualified, independent third party to create a business plan for a dairy operation and/or test for stray voltage. Dairy producers have used these grants to evaluate the feasibility of expanding a dairy, plan environmental upgrades, and create strategies to transfer the operation to a family member or other new owner.



Existing and beginning Minnesota dairy farmers are eligible for this grant.

The cost of services that are not directly related to the improvement and continuance of the dairy farm are ineligible for this grant, such as:

  • Nutrition consulting

  • Retirement and investment planning

  • Tax planning and tax return preparation

  • Intergenerational transfer planning that discontinues the dairy enterprise

  • Loan origination or documentation fees

  • Chattel real estate appraisal

  • Crop consulting

  • Nutrient management planning – except as required in the business plan

  • Veterinary/herd health consulting

  • The cost to complete a dairy business planning grant application


The grant pays 50 percent of the cost to develop a business plan, up to $5,000. Applicant must pay the other 50 percent.

Application Instructions

  1. Contact the grant administrator to find out if your project is eligible.

  2. The application asks for the following information:

    1. Farm summary

    2. Goal of business plan

    3. Professional services you will be using to develop business plan.

    4. Budget of project

  3. An MDA review committee will look over your project and decide if it should be funded.


Financial Instrument


Maximum Award Amount


Updated March 22, 2024

Image Credit: Austin Santaniello

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