What does Producers First offer?
Producers First provides one-on-one technical assistance for Wisconsin food producers from a consultant of their choosing.
The goal of Producers First is to expand Wisconsin’s local foods markets by building producer capacity. To learn more about the impact of Producers First, download the Buy Local, Buy Wisconsin 2011 Annual Impact Report (PDF) and see page 16.
Could I apply?
Any Wisconsin farmer or producer may apply for Producers First. Producers for local markets are encouraged to apply.
What kind of assistance is available?
Examples of technical assistance provided by Producers First include but are not limited to: accounting and financial organization, business planning, food safety, grant writing assistance, legal services, market development, packaging and label development, whole farm planning, etc.
Producers First will pay up to $3,000 to a consultant for providing this assistance. A matching payment of at least 10% is required from producers.
Who will provide this assistance?
Producers First allows you to identify a consultant with the experience and expertise you need. We encourage you to seek referrals or search the following database of consultants that have expressed interest in working with producers to provide technical assistance.
DATCP provides the following database of consultants that have expressed interest in working with producers to provide technical assistance. DATCP in no way endorses any individual on the list, nor does DATCP provide any guarantee that consultants listed are qualified to provide the services listed. Full responsibility rests with the producer to verify that a consultant is capable of providing the technical assistance he or she seeks. Consultants wishing to be included on the list should contact Keefe Keeley at firstname.lastname@example.org
Consultant Database - Excel spreadsheet
If you are in need of assistance but are not producing for local markets, please contact the the Wisconsin Farm Center here or use other DATCP resources here.
How can I apply for Producers First?
We strongly encourage you to complete the Producers First Web Questionnaire about a month before the deadline to ensure time to complete the process. If your questionaire shows you meet the eligibility requirements, we will invite you to submit a three-page full application. We accept questionaires at all times, and we accept full applications for review according to the following deadline: