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. Complete and submit the Dairy Business Planning Grant Application (below). You can either fill out the application form on your computer or you can print it out and complete it by hand.

  3. Make sure your proposal contains these key components of a business plan (see Attachment C for an example outline):

    1. Executive Summary

    2. Short and Long Term Goals and Objectives

    3. Management Analysis

    4. Current and Historical Financial Information/Production Information

    5. Analysis of Proposed Business Changes

  4. An MDA review committee will review your project and determine if it should be funded.

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Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA)

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Austin Santaniello

Updated December 23, 2022

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