The Dairy Business Innovation Center (DBIC), Delavan, Wis., is shutting down operations, effective Sept. 30.

That that time, funding from USDA-Rural Development will officially cease and DBIC activities must be complete. A thorough evaluation of new funding sources did not yield a compatible source of support, and the board of directors agreed that operations under the current model are no longer possible.

Nine years ago, when the vision for the Dairy Business Innovation center was developed, a three-year program was proposed. The fact that the DBIC continued for an additional five years is a testament to the success of the program created by Senator Herb Kohl’s staff, WDATCP and the DBIC leadership, the willingness of the dairy industry to embrace this service organization, and the innovation of the clients it has served.

The center has served as a valuable member of a wide network of dairy industry resources in Wisconsin. DBIC efforts played a role in the introduction of an array of new dairy products in addition to the start-up, expansion or remodeling of more than100 dairy plants and, most importantly, the continuation of a cooperative culture of innovation and creativity for Wisconsin dairy.

As the state’s dairy industry moves forward, individuals and agencies are examining options to continue some of the services that were created and made available as a result of DBIC.