Letter from Leadership - February 2019
Friday, February 8, 2019
Posted by: Tim Trotter, executive director
I would like to thank all of you who attended the annual Dairy Strong conference. The attendance, speakers, venue and atmosphere were great. Despite the challenges we face within dairy, the mood was upbeat and positive. Farmers never disappoint as they always build enthusiasm and look to their fellow farmers and industry partners for inspiration.
A great example of this was our members’ quick reaction to a study released at the conference about customer perceptions of plant-based foods that mimic dairy cheese. This was a collaborative effort between Edge, Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association and Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin.
The results of the study proved that many customers believe plant-based foods that mimic cheese have the same nutritional value as real dairy cheeses, and some customers think the imitations are actually cheese. You can read more about the study on page 3.
Let’s face it, customers know dairy is “best in class” as a source of calcium and protein, and non-dairy products are using the dairy name to build confidence in their products. You, our members, responded by sending letters to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to reinforce the facts and to protect true dairy products and their labels. Edge also submitted comments on your behalf demanding the FDA take immediate action to enforce existing regulations that define dairy foods as originating from cow’s milk. As we all know, the enforcement is long overdue and increasingly important.
This issue is far from resolved, but rest assured Edge will continue to amplify your voice — the voice of milk — and continue to fight to preserve the reputation of dairy products and the farmers who produce them.