Dairy Product Packaging Innovation Grant

Grant Overview

This funding opportunity is closed.

The Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NE-DBIC) announces the availability of funds through the Dairy Packaging Innovation Grant program. To remain competitive, Northeast dairy businesses need access to product packaging solutions that meet demands for sustainability as well as marketability. This program will provide grants to support modernized packaging initiatives that prioritize sustainability, scalability, and marketability. The NE-DBIC seeks industry players who are actively engaged in innovation through their business and/or organization to develop projects that support modernized, climate-forward dairy packaging initiatives which address the full life cycle of packaging from production to disposal or reuse. Projects should increase collaboration across the dairy sector to ensure the greatest number of businesses will benefit. All projects must:

  1. demonstrate sustainability, scalability, and marketability at the forefront
  2. demonstrate accessibility of packaging innovation, particularly for the scale of processors in the Northeast
  3. include an educational/knowledge sharing component for the industry. This does not exclude the ability for the grantee to acquire patent protections for technologies developed within this grant project.
  4. incorporate partnership across sectors (minimum of one dairy processor as a key partner, if applicant is not a dairy processor)

Projects may address topics such as, but are in no way limited to: packaging lifecycle analysis, costs of conversion, supply chain logistics, research and development, packaging design, processor packaging changeovers, infrastructure upgrades, and beyond. Projects focused on research, development, and analysis must contain outcomes that can be implemented or adopted, and the grantee must show commitment to resulting from research funding. Priority will go to projects that partner across the dairy and packaging manufacturing sector and those that can demonstrate how they will positively impact multiple dairy businesses and supply chain partners.

This grant round will include a two-step application process. Following the review of pre-applications, a subset of applicants will be invited to submit a full application.  

  • Pre-Application Opens: June 29, 2023
  • Pre-Application Deadline: August 24, 2023, at 2:00 PM ET

Grants will range from $75,000 to $350,000 with a 25% (cash or in-kind) match commitment required.  Total funds available: $1,000,000. 


Applicants eligible for these funds must fall into at least one of the following categories:

  1. Dairy processors that transform fluid milk, dairy components, or dairy mix sourced from the Northeast region into an edible product and are:
    • a. licensed dairy processor in compliance with all required state and/or federal standards, as required for the sales outlets reached during the timeframe of this project; and
    • b. headquartered or based in the Northeast.
  2. Dairy producer association/dairy council1 which represents and promotes dairy products and dairy businesses of the Northeast.
  3. Packaging manufacturers that partner with at least one Northeast dairy processor, as defined above.
  4. Supply chain businesses (distributors, aggregators, retailers, etc.) that partner with at least one dairy processor, as defined above. Applicant business must:
    • a. be headquartered or based in the Northeast; and
    • b. source dairy products within the Northeast; and
    • c. purchase from and sell to businesses in the Northeast.
  5. Educational/research institutions that partner with at least one Northeast dairy processor, as defined above.

How to Apply

  1. Review the full Dairy Packaging Innovation Grant RFA (request for applications) for the complete details on eligible projects/applicants and the full application process.
  2. Register in WebGrants (may take up to two business days).
  3. Complete your pre-application in WebGrants using our Application GuidePre-application period is now closed.
  4. For those applicants invited to submit a full application, the application deadline will be announced in early summer.

Have a Question about this Grant?

Contact Kathryn Donovan.

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