Dairy Innovation Program

The Dairy Innovation Program builds a pipeline for dairy farmers and food entrepreneurs to ideate, pilot, and scale up value-added dairy products, positioning them as startups able to successfully progress in capitalization, commercialization, and competitions such as Grow-NY.

The program supports dairy entrepreneurs from ideation through to growth by teaching customer discovery, business planning and development, and prototyping. This is executed through the Dairy Runway initiative and the Northeastern Dairy Product Innovation Competition. Graduates of Dairy Runway are positioned to participate in the dairy innovation competition and winners of the dairy competition are prepared to enter other competitive funding opportunities, including Grow-NY, resulting in new, high-growth dairy companies and an increase in utilization of dairy ingredients produced in New York and the entire Northeast.

Northeastern Dairy Product
Innovation Competition

The Northeastern Dairy Product Innovation Competition builds on the Northeast’s tradition of producing exceptional quality milk and products and is open to innovators working to develop new value-added dairy products using milk and/or dairy ingredients produced in the Northeast.

In this competition, up to 10 innovators receive $20,000 in participant support and of those 10, up to three will be selected to receive an additional $55,000 and the opportunity to present at the 2023 Grow-NY Summit.

Dairy Runway Program

The Dairy Runway program welcomes food entrepreneurs and dairy innovators with early-stage ideas for value-added dairy products to participate in a virtual Cornell-hosted entrepreneurship course that focuses on initial product concept and customer discovery.

Up to 10 teams will be selected to the cohort and participate in a FREE, multi-week virtual course that combines self-directed online learnings and one-on-one instructor check-ins. Participants who successfully complete the course will advance to the program’s Kitchen Incubator stage to test their product’s technical feasibility.