Center for Dairy Excellence Awards $210,000 to Help Dairy Producers Enhance Efficiency & Cow Comfort

The Dairy Excellence Grants Were Awarded to 42 Dairy Producers From 23 PA Counties

The Center for Dairy Excellence recently awarded a collective total of $210,000 to 42 Pennsylvania dairy producers through the fifth round of the Dairy Excellence Grant program. Leveraging funds provided through the PA Dairymen’s Association and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, this investment from Ag Excellence has supported a collective reinvestment of more than $3,688,639 into Pennsylvania dairy farms across all of the funded projects to date. The grants are designed to support dairy farm improvement projects that enhance efficiency and cow comfort.

“Thanks to this investment from Ag Excellence, our grant program is helping Pennsylvania dairy producers improve profitability on their operations and increase milk production per cow,” said Melissa Anderson, Dairy Programs and Operations Manager. “To date, we have been able to help more than 210 dairy farm families through this program, and we hope more producers are able to benefit from it in the future.”  

Grant recipients are planning to use the funds to install new ventilation fans, make improvements to milking parlors, implement new LED lighting, replace mattresses, and enhance feeding systems. Several producers also plan to use the grant funds to invest in cow monitoring systems, new manure spreaders, upgraded bulk tanks and more.

During this fifth round of funding, a total of more than 9,200 Pennsylvania dairy cows will be impacted by the improvement projects. Grant recipients’ herd sizes range from approximately 25 cows to 1,800 cows. The dairy producers who received the grants represent a total of 23 counties, including:

  • Bradford
  • Butler
  • Cambria
  • Centre
  • Chester
  • Cumberland
  • Erie
  • Fayette
  • Franklin
  • Fulton
  • Huntingdon
  • Jefferson
  • Juniata
  • Lancaster
  • Lawrence
  • Lebanon
  • McKean
  • Mifflin
  • Northampton
  • Potter
  • Snyder
  • Susquehanna
  • Tioga

In a recent survey of Dairy Excellence Grant recipients, 60 percent of individuals surveyed said the improvement project would not have happened without the grant. After receiving the grant and implementing their improvement project, 56 percent of individuals surveyed said they noticed moderate to major improvements in milk production per cow. A total of 60 percent noticed moderate or major improvements in the overall profitability of their dairy operation through the project.

Grant recipients were selected by a committee of industry professionals and will receive a 50 percent match, up to a maximum matching level of $5,000. The Dairy Excellence Grant is a competitive program, with another round of grants expected to open for Pennsylvania dairy producers on September 1, 2023.

For more information, visit or contact Melissa Anderson at 717-346-0849. To see how previous grant recipients have used the funds, visit