The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.
The American Dairy Coalition (ADC) has rolled out a new initiative to advocate for the proper use of federally standardized terms established for the word “milk” on product labels entitled the Protecting Milk Integrity Initiative . A branch of ADC, the Protecting Milk Integrity Initiative will work to provide clarity and consistency for consumers across the nation.
This new initiative has been rolled out as the FDA gears up for its “ Multi-Year Nutrition Innovation Strategy; Public Meeting; Request for Comments” that will take place July 26. This meeting will discuss the possibility of expanding the “standard of Identify” used to define the word milk. According to the current standard of identity, milk is defined as the lacteal secretion obtained by complete milking of one or more healthy cows. It is crucial the dairy industry speaks up to ensure the FDA understands how important it is not only for the current standard of identity for milk to be upheld, but for it to be fully enforced -- restricting the use of the word “milk” on all future plant-based alternative product labels.
Dairy farms are going out of business at an alarming rate and the price of milk continues to decline. Meanwhile, the sales of plant-based alternatives are up 61 percent over the past five years and are projected to continue to gain market share into the future. As the consumption of fluid milk continues to decrease, we simply can no longer stand by and let deceitful plant-based alternative beverage marketing tactics slide by unchallenged.
Non-dairy plant alternatives are not equivalent to milk in nutrient value, despite marketing techniques that attempt to brand them as so. These dishonest branding techniques make it extremely difficult for consumers to select products that will meet their dietary needs and the needs of their children.
The Protecting Milk Integrity Initiative has developed a petition to collect signatures, will be submitting public comments and will be taking donations to raise money towards fighting this cause. To learn more about the “Initiative” and what you can do to “protect the integrity of milk , ” please visit: