In early May, the state of Wisconsin called a hearing at the Capitol building in regards to a state senate bill called the Dairy Innovation Hub, where $7.9 million would be invested into dairy research. Dr. Heather White was asked to testify in front of the Senate on why this bill would be beneficial to America’s Dairyland.
In mid June, the Dairy Innovation Hub was included into the state budget by the Finance Committee. Not only will this bill help fund dairy research here at UW-Madison in the Dairy Science Department, it will also provide funds to the other UW campus locations throughout the state, such as River Falls and Platteville. With the extensive coverage of this bill, all things dairy can be explored.
For the final state budget in early-mid July, Governor Tony Evers has stressed the importance of the Dairy Innovation Hub by explaining how it will be a profitable and positive influence on the dairy industry here in Wisconsin by helping all impacted by dairy.
In early August, the Board of Regents convened to approve the Dairy Innovation Hub spending proposal. By doing so, this allows each university (UW-Madison, UW-River Falls, UW-Platteville) to understand how much money will be going to each program and how it will be spent. From research to extension, all dairy niches will be positively affected by this at the three locations and throughout the state.
The Dairy Innovation Hub budget has officially passed on October 2, 2019 and will (briefly) fund four distinct areas of Dairy Research:
1. Animal Health and Welfare
2. Human Health and Nutrition
3. Land and Water Resourses
4. Farm Business and Community Growth
This is an exciting time to be a part of dairy research!