No wonder South Dakota is recruiting dairies from other states

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With a major cheese plant about to come in, South Dakota’s status as a place to dairy has been greatly enhanced.

And South Dakota officials, including the governor, aren’t hesitating to make that known. This week, they were at the World Ag Expo in Tulare, Calif., on a recruiting mission.

“We’re on a cattle roundup,” says Gov. Dennis Daugaard. “So, if you’re out there in the world of dairying and you’re looking for a place to plant your dairy, South Dakota is open for business.”

Earlier this month, it was announced that Bel Brands USA would build a $100 million cheese plant near Brookings in the eastern part of the state. Ground-breaking will take place this summer, and the company expects to have the cheese plant in operation by the end of 2013. The plant will eventually employ 400 people.

“We expect it will have an impact of about half a billion dollars annually in the Brookings region,” Daugaard told Dairy Herd Network.

Daugaard, who grew up on a dairy farm, says South Dakota is an attractive place to dairy because it has a number of cheese plants along the Interstate 29 corridor where Bel Brands also plans to operate.  And, feed costs in South Dakota are relatively low compared to other states.

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