Have you ever made a late-night milk run, because it’s a family staple and you were out? How often do you drink milk, put it on your cereal, or use it for cooking or in your morning coffee? As kids head back for the new school year, do those last-minute milk runs increase in number?
Many families in the South can’t afford to make that late-night run to the store to grab a gallon of milk. The South has some of the highest rates of food insecurity in the country and some families face hunger daily. More than 42 million Americans struggle with hunger and many rely on food banks for nutrition assistance.
To help close this nutrition gap, Southeast dairy farmers, along with dairy farmers and milk companies from across the country, established The Great American Milk Drive. It is the first nationwide program to deliver wholesome milk to hungry families who need it most. This year’s drive is kicking off in the Southeast with Great American Milk Drive events scheduled at supermarkets in Virginia, Kentucky, and Georgia.
Food banks receive ample donations of canned and dry goods, but fresh milk is rarely donated because it is perishable. Currently, food bank families receive less than one gallon of milk per person per year. This means hungry families miss out on the health benefits of dairy that milk provides, including eight grams of high-quality protein, calcium, vitamin D, and potassium per serving.
As families send their children back to school, we encourage you to send them with sustaining nourishment in the form of nutrient-rich milk. Donate milk to a Feeding America food bank in your community. You can also ask your participating Kroger, Farm Fresh, or Houchens grocery store to accept a Great American Milk Drive donation at the register.
Please join us in giving the goodness of milk!