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BAV Project Addresses Region's Dairy Farming Challenges
12:01PM / Friday, June 14, 2024
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GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Berkshire Agricultural Ventures (BAV) announced the launch of the Berkshire-Taconic Dairy Cohort, a two-year project to support and sustain dairy farming in the region.

With the aim of addressing specific challenges facing dairy farmers and improving the health of the regional dairy economy, this project will bring together a core group of dairy farmers to increase participants' technical skills, business planning, and grant readiness, as well as strengthen farmer-to-farmer dairy networks. The initiative is made possible by funding from the Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center (NE-DBIC).

Partnering with dairy farming consultants and experts, BAV will establish a cohort of five to eight dairy farmers from the nonprofit's service area within Massachusetts, New York, and Connecticut to gain and share knowledge, information, and networking opportunities. Through participation in cohort sessions and one-on-one consultations, dairy farmers will be better positioned for grant applications, will develop solid business planning skills, and will gain a stronger foundation for financial sustainability.

BAV will work with leading agricultural business planner Rose Wilson, who has been offering business planning services to the farm and food community since 2004. Wilson focuses on improving the agricultural economy through a combination of market research, business consulting, grant writing, and other services.

"Dairy farming is a critical yet vulnerable component of our regional food system," said BAV Executive Director Rebecca Busansky. "We know that dairy farms in the Northeast are under tremendous strain due to many factors. We at BAV believe that the region's historical loss of dairy farms can be stopped and reversed—helping to ensure that dairy production continues to feed our region's residents and contribute to regional self-reliance."

All dairy farmers in BAV's service area (Berkshire County, MA; Columbia and Dutchess Counties, NY; and Litchfield County, CT) are welcome to apply. Participating farmers will collaborate with other dairy farmers on issues faced within the dairy industry and gain knowledge of the business opportunities available for overcoming these challenges.

For details and to apply, please visit The deadline for applying is July 17, 2024. For questions, please contact Dan Carr at 413-258-1039 or



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