About the Dairy & Agriculture Foundation

The Northeast Iowa Dairy & Agriculture Foundation is a non-profit, grassroots organization formed to provide progressive outreach for youth, students, farmers, industry and consumers to strengthen and support a strong agriculture community.

The organization traces back to 2000 with the original name of the Northeast Iowa Community-Based Dairy Foundation. The organization was developed with the purpose to retain young people in rural areas while bolstering the economic impact of dairy farms in northeast Iowa. In 2020, members voted to change the name to diversify and include broader agriculture into the mission. The Dairy & Agriculture Foundation is led by a 15-member, farmer based board of directors.

The Dairy & Agriculture Foundation operates Iowa’s Dairy Center, a 220-cow dairy farm focused on providing demonstration on modern farming practices. Iowa’s Dairy Center was recognized as Iowa’s first “Center of Excellence for Value-Added Agriculture” by Governor Tom Vilsack. Additionally, the Dairy & Agriculture Foundation raises 80 market steers, 10 cow-calf pairs and farms 250 acres implementing conservation practices throughout the farm.

Education is the driver in all of the Dairy & Agriculture Foundation’s efforts and is achieved in partnership with Northeast Iowa Community College (NICC) and Iowa State University Extension & Outreach (ISU). This allows students enrolled in agriculture programs at NICC to experience hands-on learning in the barn and in the fields. Several farmer workshops, trainings and events are hosted each year in partnership with ISU Extension.

As a community outreach effort in partnership with Midwest Dairy, the Dairy & Agriculture Foundation welcomes over 10,000 annual visitors to Iowa’s Dairy Center. Visitors from all 50 states and over 30 countries have experienced Iowa agriculture through tours and events including the highly anticipated Breakfast on the Farm.

Mission Statement

Providing progressive outreach for youth, students, farmers, industry and consumers to strengthen and support a strong agriculture community.

Vision Statement

Stimulating a robust economy, thriving rural communities and engaging consumers for unified support of innovative agriculture practices to ensure a safe food supply.

Values

  • Animal Care: Showcasing best practices and commitment to animal well-being.
  • Environmental Stewardship: Demonstrating innovative practices to protect our environment for future generations.
  • Fiscal Responsibility: Supporting our local economy and making thoughtful decisions for the viability of the Foundation.
  • Farmer Focused: Providing resources and training to support the success of farmers and students.
  • Community Driven: Connecting consumers to agriculture through experiences that build trust in farm practices.