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Innovative Dairy Will Use Kentucky Cows for Lactose-Free Skim Milk

Eastern Kentucky will soon be home to one of the most innovative dairy facilities in the world.

Governor Steve Beshear on Tuesday announced Kentucky Dairy Product Innovations LLC (KYDPI) will open a dairy processing plant in Laurel County. The facility will develop a low-calorie, lactose-free skim milk, produced exclusively from Kentucky cows.

“I want to thank Kentucky Dairy Product Innovations for locating this high-tech startup in Kentucky,” Beshear said. “KYDPI promotes a healthy lifestyle, which is something we strive for here in the Commonwealth. I look forward to seeing consumers around the country enjoying this revolutionary product.”

KYDPI will join the $1.7 billion worldwide lactose-free skim milk market. Its product will be formulated by dairies and manufacturers into new recipes to attract more health-conscious consumers.

“Through the use of our patented processing technologies, our product will contain all of the nutrients found in milk, but none of the calories associated with lactose,” said KYDPI president Matthew Clark.

KYDPI’s initial customer will be FIZZA LLC, also based in London. FIZZA is a sparkling dairy nutrient beverage approved by the USDA for sale at middle and high schools across the country. This new beverage is being co-packed by the Prairie Farms Dairy of Somerset, and is being initially introduced into the retail space by Shaw’s Supermarkets of New England (80 stores), as well as into select national middle and high schools (113 schools in the U.S.) in September of this year.

KYDPI has entered into a lease-purchase agreement to acquire a 12,000-square-foot facility in the London-Laurel County Industrial Park off Route 80. The company plans to hire up to 20 employees and invest nearly $4 million into the project. KYDPI expects to be operational by year’s end. 

“Today’s announcement is an acknowledgement of our region and our Commonwealth as a continued economic leader in agriculture, thanks to the hard work of Kentucky’s farmers,” said State Rep. Tommy Turner, of Somerset. “It is my hope Kentucky Dairy Product Innovations will help lay the foundation for our future dairy farmers to lead the way in milk development, while contributing to the growth of London and Laurel County.”

“The city of London welcomes Kentucky Dairy Product Innovations,” said London Mayor Troy Rudder. “We are pleased that KYDPI is choosing to invest in our community by creating new jobs and that Kentucky dairy farmers will be a key part of this new process.” 

“I am thrilled with Kentucky Dairy Product Innovations’ decision to locate here in Laurel County,” said Laurel County Judge-Executive David Westerfield. “We are proud and excited to have this unique Kentucky Proud product manufacturing facility here in our community. We wish the company many years of prosperity and growth.”

“I applaud KYDPI for their decision to invest in southeast Kentucky,” said Roger Thomas, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Agricultural Policy. “This partnership will create additional opportunities for our dairy farm families with the new markets developed by KYDPI.”

To encourage the investment and job creation in London, the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority preliminarily approved the company for tax incentives up to $200,000 through the Kentucky Business Investment program. The performance-based incentive allows a company to keep a portion of its investment over the term of the agreement through corporate income tax credits and wage assessments by meeting job and investment targets.

KYDPI also received financing from Kentucky Highlands Investment Corporation (KHIC). KHIC provides financial support to entrepreneurs to encourage small business growth and job creation in eastern Kentucky. 

“Kentucky Highlands is here to help provide capital and business resources to any business wanting to start or grow in southeast Kentucky,” said Jerry Rickett, president of KHIC. “KYDPI is a perfect example of how multiple resources can be brought together to strengthen a business opportunity.”

From the Commonwealth of Kentucky