South Dakota could soon be known as a dairy powerhouse thanks to a popular snacking cheese. In February, Bel Brands USA announced it would build a US$100 million cheese plant near Brookings, described on a state website as having an ideal climate location for milking cows. The plant will be operating by the end of 2013. Just the first phase will produce about 22 million pounds of cheese annually. The company’s signature product is Mini Baby Bel snacking cheeses. It represents close to one third of Bel Brands’ U.S. sales with consistent 25 per cent plus growth per year.