USDA invests $6 million to expand market opportunities in rural Wisconsin

(Nati Harnik | AP Photo/Nati Harnik, File)
Published: Dec. 8, 2022 at 2:06 PM CST
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STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) - The USDA Rural Development State Director for Wisconsin Julie Lassa announced that the department is investing $6 million to help create new and better market opportunities and expand essential services for rural people, businesses, and entrepreneurs in Wisconsin.

“Rural Wisconsin plays an important role in our state and national economy,” says Lassa. “Today’s investments recognize that importance and are designed to create new economic opportunities and better markets for individuals and businesses in our rural communities.”

The funding will help keep resources and wealth made by rural people right at home through affordable financing and technical assistance. It will help rural Americans start businesses and allow small business owners to grow. It will also open the door to new economic opportunities for communities and people who historically have lacked access to critical resources and financing.

The University of Wisconsin Board of Regents will use a $199,952 Rural Cooperative Development Grant to provide technical assistance to start-up and established cooperatives, in the areas of retail grocery, manufacturing, green energy, forestry, agriculture, and veterinary services.

Cooperative Development Services Inc. will use a $200,000 Rural Cooperative Development Grant to provide technical assistance to cooperatives to foster economic development in rural areas of the upper Midwest.

Advocap Inc. will use a $11,664 Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program grant to provide technical assistance and training to rural microentrepreneurs and microenterprises. Advocap Inc. has been providing business assistance to small, rural businesses for over 25 years.

Cap Services Inc. will use a $83,556 Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program grant to provide technical assistance and training to rural microentrepreneurs and microenterprises.

Wisconsin Women’s Business Initiative Corporation will use a $56,843 Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program grant to provide technical assistance and training to rural microentrepreneurs and microenterprises.

In Waunakee, Octopi Brewing LLC will use a $1,750,000 Business and Industry Loan to purchase a variety of packaging and manufacturing equipment.

In Tomah, THD LLC will use a $4,600,000 Business and Industry Loan to purchase and operate the Tomah Best Western. This investment in rural Wisconsin will save 15 jobs and provide economic impact to the community.

To learn more about these programs and the opportunities they bring, visit rd.usda.gov under their programs and services tab.