This bale promotion of whole milk really had its start 4 or 5 years ago. As one of the founding members of DPAC, we always searched for ways to help the dairy farmers. We met with legislators in Harrisburg, Washington and lots of other places.
Many times we asked: “Why can’t we advertise milk as 97% fat free?” Since it is standardized to 3.25% fat, it really is virtually 97% fat free, just like 2% reduced fat milk is 98% fat free. We were told not to do it.
Our advertising checkoff dollars just didn’t seem to be doing a very good job these past 10 years. They have been promoting fat free and low-fat 1% milk and the fat free yogurt -- not much whole milk.
After the listening session with the Pennsylvania Milk Marketing Board in December 2018, some of us were talking. We thought it was time to do something different, something like letting consumers know whole milk is 97% fat free. We didn’t come up with a plan that day. We were thinking about a billboard, but that was far too expensive. Then we thought about portable signs.
Then over the weekend after that December meeting, I looked around and thought to myself that I already have the perfect thing: A wrapped hay bale!
So, I painted one. I set it in the pasture at our crossroad. I also said we farmers have silos, wagons, barns and sheds we can paint signs on.
Lots of feedback has come in, and it seemed no one knew whole milk was 97% fat free. Some said “why are we drinking 2% milk, when whole milk tastes so much better?”
Young and older people never thought about how much fat or nutrition is in milk. It seems so sad how people are misled by our checkoff dollars, our doctors and medical people and our federal dietary guidelines committee.
It really is time to educate the people that whole milk is good for young and old, and it’s virtually 97% fat free!