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New Mexico Department of Agriculture The letters NMDA with the D internaly shapped as the state of New Mexico. Logo

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Dairy Facility Permit

“Every facility that produces dairy products in the State of New Mexico must hold a current Grade A Permit.”
(Dairy Establishment Sanitation Act)

Please follow the steps below to obtain permit for a Grade A Dairy Farm or Dairy Plant:

  • Contact the New Mexico Environment Department to obtain a discharge permit – this process may take a while so start early
  • Contact the NMDA Dairy Bureau office at 505-383-9299 to be put into contact with the Dairy Inspector in your area

Dairy Farms

Submit a detailed plan drawn to scale of the building with the following information:

  • Location and size of rooms, doors, and windows
  • Location and type of lighting
  • Location of drain pipes, grade of floors to drains
  • Materials to be used for floors, walls, and ceilings
  • Ventilation system types and locations
  • Location and size of water heater, wash vat, and water well
  • Location of toilet facilities and waste disposal systems
  • Location and size of milk cooling equipment and details, including slope, of milk pipeline systems
  • Location of hand sink with hot and cold running water
  • Fill out a dairy application and mail to the Dairy Bureau office for processing


Dairy Plants

Submit a detailed plan drawn to scale of the building with the information from above (for dairy farms) and also include the following:

  • Separate rooms for a) pasteurization, processing, cooling and bottling, and b) washing of return items
  • Location of sanitary storage of containers, equipment, caps, and parchment paper etc.
  • Location and type of bottling, packaging, and capping equipment
  • Location and type of pasteurization equipment
  • Location of three-compartment wash vat
  • Location of floor-sink drains
  • Processing room cannot be directly connected to a domestic dwelling
  • Must have a two door separation between parlor and processing room and restroom and processing room
  • Cleaning facilities for bulk transport tanks (if applicable)

Additional Resources

Building Inspectors can find resources for permits with the New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Construction Industries Division.
Learn about memberships and events for the State Producer's Association through the New Mexico Dairy Producers Association.
Dairy Specialists can learn about technology and science regarding the dairy industry in New Mexico through the New Mexico State University ACES Dairy Extension.
Regulations and guidelines governing Grade A dairies can be found in the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (2019 revision).
Water rights can be found at the New Mexico Office of the State Engineer.
Learn how local dairies provide for our communities through the Dairy Farmers of America
Learn about the quality, traceability and sustainability of milk and the dairies it comes from through Select Milk Producers.
Learn about the one of the nation's largest organic milk suppliers through Horizon Organic.
Learn how milk plants must register with the FDA and meet Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) requirements once a Grade A permit is issued through the FDA Food Facility Registration webpage.
Find a list of FDA Milk Guidance Documents here.


Dustin Cox, Division Director