RDP project database
Survey of small-dairy sector to enhance development programmes
The Small Dairies Development Programme is a national project funded from the RDP for Finland. It involved a survey of the small-dairy sector which was used to create a tailored development programme for the sector.
The project involved a survey of the state of the small-dairy sector. The results are used to form the basis for a national development programme. The survey was carried out in co-operation with two research institutions and the Association of Farmhouse Cheese Makers in Finland.
Designed for the small-dairy sector, the development programme aimed at safeguarding the continuity of small dairy operations by increasing collaboration among enterprises and by preparing their staff for the requirements of a new Finnish food act.
The project included telephone interviews, postal surveys, and visits to enterprises. The questionnaire was sent to 59 enterprises. Eleven enterprises responded by post, and representatives of 17 enterprises were interviewed over the telephone. Ten visits to enterprises were made. Representatives of relevant training and development organisations were also interviewed. A final report was drafted.
Results & Benefits
The survey revealed the need for enhanced communication. The entrepreneurs indicated that they were not satisfied with the current supply of training and development measures and that there is a need for individual consultations, given their limited time resources. Many dairy entrepreneurs considered the retail position of small milk-processing enterprises to be good as demand is growing.
The positive results in terms of participation and the interest in the final results stimulated the implementation of further research projects to better understand the dairy sector. The work undertaken by this project was continued by the Association of Farmhouse Cheese Makers, which in 2011 joined the European Network of Farmhouse Cheese Makers, thus allowing Finnish entrepreneurs to exchange knowledge with cheese makers in other EU countries.
Project location and other information
Total project cost (€)
EAFRD contribution (€)
National contribution (€)
Languages for contact
English, Finnish, Swedish
At a glance
Final beneficiary type
Individual farmers, Producer groups
€20 000 - €99 999
Theme / Measure:
Rural Quality of Life & Economic Diversification
Rural economic diversification
312. Support for business creation and development
Food quality , Cooperation, Dairy sector, Development planning