World Dairy Diary

Dairy Industry Consortium Launches Initiative

innovationcenterThe dairy industry has unveiled a major initiative to help reduce on-farm expenses while meeting a growing consumer demand for environmentally friendly products. The industry-wide effort focuses on the fluid milk value chain — from farm to table. It includes a series of projects that will reduce energy, increase efficiency and help dairy producers tap into new sources of income.

The announcement was made by the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, an organization bringing together leaders from across the dairy value chain. The industry-wide group includes producer organizations, dairy cooperatives, processors and manufacturers such as Hilmar Cheese Company, Leprino Foods, Dairylea Cooperative Inc., Anderson Erickson Dairy, Land O’Lakes and Dairy Farmers of America.

As part of the initiative, 12 project plans were unveiled that offer a range of solutions for operations large and small across all industry segments. Some of these projects take advantage of existing practices, while others are technological innovations that require longer time frames and financial commitments for research and development.

“During these difficult economic times, it is especially important to address both short- and long-term solutions that ensure the health and strength of our industry,” said Thomas P. Gallagher, chief executive officer of the Innovation Center and Dairy Management Inc.™ (DMI), which manages the national dairy checkoff program on behalf of the nation’s dairy producers. “By identifying practical and effective methods to increase business value and reduce dairy’s carbon footprint, we ensure the viability and sustainability of U.S. dairy producers and the dairy industry,” he added.

The project plans have the potential to create a conservatively estimated $238 million in business value and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 3.2 million metric tons — equivalent to taking more than half a million cars off the road every year.

Solutions include identifying and implementing energy-saving best practices across all value chain segments, removing barriers to the adoption of methane digesters, and implementing pilot programs to test alternatives to thermal pasteurization for raw milk and reduced-temperature clean-in-place technologies.


Meet Ashley Huibregtse

Ashley HuibregtseThe 2008-2009 Alice in Dairyland is Ashley Huibregtse. She serves June to June and promotes agriculture all over the state.

I met her at this year’s World Dairy Expo. She says she’s “an ambassador for everything from the dairy industry which we have here at World Dairy Expo, to cranberries, cherries and ginseng.”

Her travels take her to media interviews, school visits and events like Expo. She hopes to get a job in communications that allows her to continue to promote agriculture.

You can listen to my interview with Ashley as part of our Milking Parlor Podcast: milking-parlor-37.mp3

To subscribe to the Milking Parlor podcast, here are some instructions.

World Dairy Expo 2008 Photo Album

Sponsors of World Dairy Diary coverage of this year’s World Dairy Expo include GEA Farm Technologies and BASF Plant Science.

Yearwood Wears Milk Mustache

Country music star, Trisha Yearwood is the latest celeb to wear the popular got milk? mustache. The ad premiered on August 5 in several magazines.

A graduate of Belmont University in Nashville, Yearwood has performed at the Academy Awards, the Olympics and the Library of Congress. She sang with Luciano Pavarotti, one of world’s most famous vocal performers, in the summer of 1998 at his benefit for Liberian children. Yearwood received a 2008 Grammy nomination for Best Female Country Vocal Performance for “Heaven, Heartache And the Power of Love” and was named one of Redbook’s “Women of the Year” (2005). Yearwood was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry in 1999.

Yearwood’s songs have appeared in numerous feature films most notably “Con Air” which featured her Grammy award winning song “How Do I Live”. Yearwood also has appeared on “Doctor Quinn Medicine Woman” and has won kudos for her recurring role on the TV series “JAG.”

Along with her singing and acting career, Yearwood released her first cookbook, “Georgia Cooking in an Oklahoma Kitchen” in April 2008 which she co-wrote with her mom and sister.

Yearwood lives with her husband, fellow country singer Garth Brooks in Oklahoma.

Proud of Dairy Launches

Dairy UK, an organization that has brought together dairy processors, farming representatives, co-ops and bottle milk buyers in the UK, has launched ‘Proud of Dairy.’ The campaign’s goals include making the government, media and the public proud of the British dairy sector.

Over 75,000 people work in the dairy industry, including farmers, milk processors, milkmen and retailers and they contribute £8 billion to the economy each year.

Director general of Dairy UK, Jim Begg, said:“An enormous effort is made at every stage of the dairy supply chain to ensure that consumers are end up with a huge choice of high quality, nutritious dairy foods.

“From farmers and processors on to distribution, the dairy industry is making big strides to reduce the environmental impact of milk, innovate and respond to consumer trends.

“It means that there are more natural, tasty dairy products on offer now than ever before. These are just some of the reasons that we’re Proud of Dairy.”

Sustainability Initiative Developed

Three national dairy organizations
Dairy Management Inc.(DMI), National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) and the International Dairy Foods Association (IFDA) have launched a new comprehensive sustainability initiative that will encourage industry innovations, improve environmental performance and position the industry for future marketplace demands.

“The dairy industry recognizes the growing number of people who care about the health and environmental impact of the products they buy,” says Tom Gallagher, chief executive officer of DMI, which manages the national dairy producer checkoff program. “We must do all we can to ensure that consumers know that the dairy industry is committed to improving their lives, both nutritionally and environmentally.”

The initiative will identify key supply-chain innovations that, as part of a comprehensive sustainability effort, can help position dairy as a preferred product among the rapidly increasing number of socially-conscious consumers. Among the focus areas of the effort will be identifying opportunities to reduce energy consumption and costs in milk production and processing, as well as boost on-farm income opportunities in emerging “green” energy markets.

This initiative will help identify opportunities for dairy farmers to generate additional revenue from emerging energy markets through methane capture and other innovations. By working together, dairy producers and processors can further demonstrate our industry’s commitment to healthy people and a healthy planet. Through this effort, DMI, NMPF and IDFA will identify best practices and opportunities for innovation in production, processing and marketing of milk and milk products.

“We are at the dawn of a new era in the food retailing industry,” Gallagher said. “This ground-breaking, checkoff-supported effort will help us tap the ingenuity of our industry and guarantee that we can continue to produce a highly nutritious and sustainable product for American consumers.”

“The dairy industry’s commitment to sustainability is a win-win-win,” according to Gallagher. “By working together, we can identify opportunities to cut energy costs, produce ‘green’ energy and develop a deeper connection with consumers and retailers.”

As part of the initiative, the three dairy organizations have begun efforts to analyze the carbon footprint of milk, from production on the farm, through processing and retail distribution, to consumption. This analysis will help identify potential innovation opportunities and possible best practices that can reduce energy use and increase sales in the dairy supply chain. After calculating milk’s carbon footprint, this life cycle analysis will be subject to a peer review process to develop a manuscript for publication in a scientific journal.

Bryant Named to Processor Board

Congratulations to Jay Bryant, newly appointed to the National Fluid Milk Processor Promotion Board. Bryant, the CEO of Maryland & Virginia Milk Producers Cooperative Inc., will be seated on the board until June 30, 2009.

The National Fluid Milk Processor Promotion Board is composed of 15 fluid milk processors from 15 geographic regions and five at-large members. At least three at-large members must be fluid milk processors and at least one must be from the general public. The Board was established by the Fluid Milk Promotion Act of 1990 to develop and administer a coordinated program of advertising and promotion to increase the demand for fluid milk products.

The national fluid milk program is financed by a mandatory 20-cent per hundredweight assessment on all fluid milk processed and marketed commercially in consumer-type packages in the contiguous 48 states and the District of Columbia. Processors who commercially process and market 3 million pounds or less per month, excluding those fluid milk products delivered to the residence of a consumer, are exempt from assessments.

Free Ice Cream for All

Free ice cream! Free ice cream!

Dippin’ Dots will celebrate its 20th birthday by giving away free cups of their famous ice cream beads on May 20th.

“We want to thank our customers for their continued support of Dippin’ Dots by offering them a free cup of their favorite flavor,” said Dippin’ Dots inventor Curt Jones.

Wal-Mart Supercenter
s will kick-off summer by hosting what could be the largest ice cream social event on ‘Sundae’, May 18th. Visit from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. to get your free sundae!

Wal-Mart will have on hand more than 5,000 ice cream scoopers to build an estimated 1 million free ice cream sundaes, complete with whipped cream and other toppings while supplies last.

Kraft Singles Celebrates Mother’s Day

kraftMother’s Day is this weekend, and what’s a better gift for mom than a grilled cheese sandwich? Kraft Singles and American Greetings is teaming up to help husbands and kids make mom the perfect grilled cheese and free e-cards as a thank you.

Kraft Singles is teaching kids and husbands how to make the sandwiches by offering in-store cooking demonstrations topped off with samples of the finished product. Reps will visit select grocery stores through May 11. During the demos, in-store TV will feature Kraft Singles’ “Have a Happy Sandwich” ad. More than 675,000 samples will be distributed. In addition, Kraft reps are also handing out 250,000 Singles Savers, special square tubs used to store Kraft Singles Cheese.

“For many people, the first grilled cheese sandwich they ever had was one prepared by mom,” said Kraft spokesman Basil Maglaris. “Kraft Singles is providing fun ways to help children, fathers and husbands celebrate moms and all they do.”

The firm is also teaming up with American Greetings. In-store, the greeting card company is giving out free Happy Mother’s Day “Grilled Cheese Sandwich” gift certificates, which kids (and husbands) can give to mom on her special day. Each comes with cooking instructions. It’s also supporting the promotion with in-store signage in its greeting card section.

Online at, kids can send free Kraft Singles-branded e-cards to mom with customizable coupons. The coupons can be redeemed for everything from a grilled cheese sandwich and a kitchen clean up to a hand-drawn picture or a week of bed making. Husbands, too, can send e-cards with their own coupons for countless compliments, a romantic rendezvous, or trash takeout. Banner ads support the effort.

MilkPEP Promotes Chocolate Milk

chocomilkThere’s been a lot of news lately about low-fat chocolate milk being a great choice for athletes post work-out. The nutritious drink has been shown to re-hydrate and re-fuel the body.

The US Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP) has drawn on a number of studies to show that the unique mix of key nutrients in chocolate low fat milk make it “an ideal post-exercise choice.”

In a statement the MilkPEP said that scientists have evaluated chocolate milk as a post-exercise drink and have highlighted several reasons why it might help the body recover.

According to MilkPEP, chocolate milk contains carbohydrates and protein to help replenish exhausted muscles and it provides fluids and electrolytes such as potassium to help with re-hydration. Also, chocolate milk has protein that builds lean muscle when combined with exercise.

The MilkPEP draws on research published in the study Chocolate milk as a post exercise recovery aid published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism in February 2006.

Another relevant study was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in August 2007. The researchers concluded that “chronic post-exercise consumption of milk promotes greater hypertrophy during the early stages of resistance training in novice weightlifters when compared with isoenergetic soy or carbohydrate consumption “

Build-A-Bear Rocks with Milk

milkrocksBuild-A Bear Workshop is teaming up with Milk Rocks, a division of Milk Media, to feature its virtual world, on 120 million milk cartons in 95,000 elementary schools. In addition to the milk cartons, messaging on 12,500 posters and 15,000 book covers will help promote the campaign.

The campaign is designed to be a fun way to promote health and nutrition and to encourage kids to drink milk, Build-A-Bear Workshop said. Each milk carton will include facts about the site and a code for a free virtual milk carton. Online, visitors can create their own unique character, participate in games to earn Bear Bills, buy clothing and furniture for their Cub Condo home and trade items they have created or acquired with other citizens in the world.

Rascal Flatts – Milk Rocks!

flattsThe Milk Rocks! campaign now has power group Rascal Flatts on-board, and one lucky winner will have their dream come true – the chance to sing live onstage with the band! The contest, “Be a Milk Rock Star” starts on March 1 and will include advertisements on milk carton sides and lunchroom posters in more than 95,000 elementary, middle and high schools across the country.

The “Be a milk rock star” push, part of the broader Milk Rocks! public service effort, promotes health and nutrition and was created by MilkMedia. The band will pre-record messages to fans explaining contest rules as well as nutritional facts about milk, which can be seen on milk cartons, school lunchroom posters and a Web site prior to the live concert.

Launching on March 1, 2008, Rascal Flatts fans can register on the Milk Rocks! Web site to select their favorite song (among five) and upload a karaoke-style video of the tune. The top 10 participants voted by the Milk Rocks! online community will win signed Gibson guitars, Rascal Flatts CDs and posters signed by the band. The winner will appear in concert with Rascal Flatts. The grand prize also includes hosting a concert Webcast from the customized Gibson guitar tour bus and meeting a rep of Lyric Street Records, Rascal Flatts’ label.

“We have the greatest fans in the world,” said Rascal Flatts band member Gary LeVox. “So giving our songs back to them, with the opportunity to join the band for a night, is the least we can do to say thanks. And since drinking milk is a big part of keeping our fans energized for our show, we’re happy to help Milk Rocks! get their message out there,” he said.

Promoting Wisconsin Cheese for WMMB

Kay ZwaldKay Zwald is a Wisconsin dairy producer doing some promotional work here at Expo. She’s been on the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board for about a year.

This morning she’s here promoting Wisconsin dairy and cheese to consumers and talking with producers. Kay says that producers are most often asking what’s being done with their funds to promote the industry.

She says that everyone seems to be happy. That’s a theme of almost every conversation I’ve had here this week.

Listen to our “Milking Parlor” podcast with Kay here: Listen To MP3 Interview with Kay Zwald (MP3)

To subscribe to the Milking Parlor podcast, here are some instructions.

2007 World Dairy Expo Photo Album
World Dairy Diary coverage of World Dairy Expo is sponsored by:
NutriDense Silage Charleston Orwig

Bring Milk Back to the Dinner Table

MilkPEP, funded by the nation’s milk processors, is challenging American families to make milk their beverage of choice – and awarding 25 of those families with great prizes! Families can enter by taking a photo of their family choosing milk or donning the famous Milk Mustache and upload it to the website before August 31, 2007.

As families gather back around the dinner table, what was once a staple of the meal — milk — might be hard to find. Over the past decade, milk at dinner has steadily declined and today nearly 60 percent of children’s dinners do not include milk, according to new findings from The NPD Group. Conversely, nearly one-third of all kids’ meals are served with a soft drink or fruit drink — beverages that are often loaded with sugar and missing important nutrients.

The percentage of overweight American children and teens has tripled in the last two decades and a recent report called What America Drinks suggests that beverage choice may impact weight and the overall quality of the diet. Because of these findings, health experts like registered dietitian Jodie Shield are joining the nationwide Think About Your Drink campaign to urge parents to think about what’s filling their children’s glasses and make milk the “official drink of the family.”

“As parents, it’s important for us to realize that beverage choice may play a part in the fight against raising overweight, yet undernourished kids,” said Shield. “And, family dinner is a great place to start. By swapping your child’s soft drink for milk, you boost vital nutrients many kids are missing.”

Choosing milk at your next family dinner can have a real nutrition impact. Choosing lowfat or fat free milk may help keep your family at a healthy weight. Research shows drinking the recommended three servings of lowfat or fat free milk everyday is an important part of a healthy diet for parents and their kids, and may also contribute toward maintaining a healthy weight.

With Americans currently consuming two to three times the amount of sweetened beverages as they do milk, dinner is an important meal for parents to help control what their kids are drinking. Research shows that the more often a family eats together, the more likely their kids will choose calcium-rich drinks such as milk and shy away from nutrient-void sodas.

In fact, studies on mothers and daughters show that moms’ own food choices may be more influential than any other attempt to control their daughters’ food intake. A mother’s decision to drink milk more frequently and to eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains is likely to influence her daughter’s choices.

Real Ice Cream MilkQuakes From Krystal

Krystal MilkshakeIt’s nice to know that Krystal is using real ice cream in their MilkQuakes. If you visit their MySpace page you can get a free one. It’s called the Krystal Lover’s Lounge. You can download a print a coupon for one of their MilkQuakes from the site.

Since it’s MySpace it’s a blog and they’ve got posts. It looks like they’ve got 630 friends so far.

It’s hot outside. And summer doesn’t “officially” begin for 3 more days. But never fear, because we here at Krystal have made it our mission to keep you cool all summer long. In fact, we’re going to start today by offering all Krystal Lovers a coupon for a FREE MilkQuake – our new line of premium milkshakes made only from real ice-cream.

And because we just couldn’t stop there, we’re going to help you “Chill Out” all summer by providing you with earth-friendly tips that you can use to keep your home cool without having to crank the AC (see, we care about the earth’s well-being as much as we do yours – plus, by saving $$ on your energy bill, you’ll have more $$ for MilkQuakes). One tip will be included in our Krystal Lover VIP emails (if you don’t receive these, you’re missing out – so sign up at – and of course, they’ll be posted here on our MySpace page.

So here goes, our first “Chill Out” tip of the summer:

· Turn off the hot stuff. Switch off your computer (only after you’ve finished downloading the free coupon of course) and any lights not in use. In fact, try to avoid incandescent and halogen lamps all together if you can. Go around your home and conduct a “touch test” – if it feels hot, turn it off – that simple.

And, if you have any earth-friendly summer survival advice, do tell by posting your tip in our comments section.

Now, click here for your coupon – good for one free MilkQuake. Oh, and feel free to share this post with your Krystal-lovin’ friends so they can download their own coupon.

Intern Needed in Illinois

Looking for a great summer position? How about working for the Midwest Dairy Association Chicago and St. Louis Divisions? This sounds like a great opportunity for a young person interested in the dairy industry, but hurry, applicaitons are due by April 7th!

The position is designed to assist Midwest Dairy Association staff with marketing communication objectives on behalf of the dairy checkoff. Duties will include news release development and involvement with activities conducted by the organization in conjunction with the Illinois State Fair and June Dairy Month.

To be eligible, applicants must be at least 18 years of age and be a student in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, Oklahoma or Arkansas, or be a permanent resident of those states. The candidate need not be from a dairy farm, but those with knowledge of the dairy industry are preferred. Students possessing strong communication and organizational skills are preferred. The position, which is salaried, requires the intern to locate within commuting distance of Carlock and Springfield, Illinois, where most duties will be based.

North Dakota Girls Sought

North Dakota girls…start honing your dairy promotion skills and get ready to enter the North Dakota Dairy Princess contest. The pageant beings on July 25 at the North Dakota State Fair. The winning girl will receive $900 in scholarships and the first runner-up will receive $500 in scholarships. Entry deadline is June 1st, so visit Midwest Dairy today to get your application!

The North Dakota Dairy Princess serves as an ambassador for the state’s dairy industry, helping the dairy checkoff program communicate with consumers regarding dairy farmers’ stewardship for animals and natural resources, the safety and wholesomeness of dairy products and the economic importance of dairy to North Dakota’s economy.

Candidates must be 17 to 23 years old, be a high school graduate and unmarried, and have parents or guardians who are actively engaged in the production of milk for sale to a licensed plant. A candidate also qualifies if she, her parents or guardian is employed on a dairy farm. At the state contest, candidates will be judged on their communication skills, personality, general knowledge of the dairy industry and enthusiasm for dairy promotion.

Wisconsin Comfort Food

WisMilkMarketingBoardLogoWisconsin is still known for cheese, a fact that the restaurant, The Old Fashioned is taking to heart. The menu at the restaurant features many fantastic dishes made with Wisconsin cheese, including an old favorite, Macaroni and Wisconsin Cheese. Now you can try your hand at Chef Patrick O’Halloran’s recipe, thanks to the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board.

Chef O’Halloran shared his recipe for Macaroni and Wisconsin Cheese with Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board to be part of the recipe collection in its Specialty Cheese program, which is designed to introduce Wisconsin residents to a diverse selection of the state’s specialty cheeses.

For our lucky readers – here’s the recipe. Enjoy!

3 cups heavy cream
3 cups Wisconsin Sharp (aged) Cheddar, shredded
1/4 cup premium Wisconsin Parmesan,* grated
Pinch of ground white pepper
1/4 tsp. nutmeg, freshly ground
1 pound cellentani** pasta, cooked al dente according to package directions
and well drained
2 Tbsp. butter
8 4-oz pieces Wisconsin ring bologna, optional

Breadcrumb Topping
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs, toasted***
1/4 cup parsley, chopped
1/4 cup premium Wisconsin Parmesan,* grated
Toss all ingredients together.

Preheat oven to 400F. In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, bring cream to low boil, stirring to prevent scorching. Add Wisconsin Cheddar and Parmesan cheeses, white pepper and nutmeg. Briefly stir over low heat just until cheese is melted. Add the pasta and butter. Stir to combine until the butter is melted. Pour into an 8×11 inch baking dish and sprinkle breadcrumb topping evenly over all. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until slightly browned and bubbly. Serve with the ring bologna, if desired.

*The chef uses Wisantigo™ Stravecchio Parmesan by Sartori Foods.
**Cellentani is short tubular corkscrew pasta. You may substitute another short tubular pasta cut, such as elbows or penne, if you can’t find cellentani.
***To toast the breadcrumbs: place crumbs on metal sheet. Toast in 400F oven 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly browned. Check often and stir once or twice to prevent over browning.

Super Dairy Bowl

Super BowlIt’s Super Bowl time and the dairy industry is ready for it.

Regardless of whether the Colts or the Bears win Super Bowl 41 in Miami, dairy producers have already scored big thanks to another successful year teaming up with the National Football League to increase milk, cheese and yogurt sales. Brian Baxter has more in this report.

Download and listen to Brian’s report here: Dairy Checkoff Super Bowl News (2 min. MP3 File)

Cow Umbrellas

Cow UmbrellaRob McAlister at Umbrella Heaven sent me an email with this just in case any of you are looking for an out-of-the-ordinary promotional item for your dairy or just want to carry one with you. They’re cow umbrellas.

Here’s his contact information:

+44 1525 219794 (Telephone and also Fax)
+44 7881 677929 (Mobile Telephone)

Rob McAlister Ltd
117 Plantation Rd
Leighton Buzzard
United Kingdom

No charge Rob. Cool looking product. Wish I’d had one in Berlin last week.

Vince Carter Got Milk

Vince Carter Got MilkThose Got Milk people keep cranking out the star power to promote milk. This time it’s Vince Carter, basketball star.

Vince Carter, a seven-time NBA All-Star, is one of the best finishers in the NBA. His vertical leap and astounding moves on the court make him one of the most-talented professional basketball players. Carter is the latest celeb to join the Body By Milk campaign, created to encourage teens to drink milk to help maintain a strong, fit and healthy body.

Teens can log on to check out behind-the-scenes footage from Vince’s ad shoot and can enter the “Think About Your Drink” photo contest that might just put them in a Body By Milk starring role. The ad copy reads, “Vinsanity by Carter. Body by milk. Slam it. The protein in milk helps build muscle and drinking it regularly along with exercise will help keep your body toned. Staying active, eating right and drinking 3 glasses a day of lowfat or fat free milk helps you look great and stay in shape. So grab a glass and go crazy.” The ad hits newsstands on January 3rd in Sports Illustrated.

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