June Dairy Month Celebrates Midwest Dairy Farm Families and the Nutritious Dairy Foods They Produce

May 31, 2013, 09:00 ET from Midwest Dairy Association

OVERLAND PARK, Kan., May 31, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- June Dairy Month is an annual celebration that began in 1937 and serves as a time to reflect on dairy foods and the industry that makes it possible.  First created as a way to help distribute extra milk when cows started on pasture in the summer months, June Dairy Month's rich history continues today, with communities, companies and people from all over the country recognizing it in a variety of ways.  In 2013, Midwest Dairy is celebrating the many health and taste benefits dairy foods deliver as well as the farmers who produce them.  In particular, special attention is being paid to dairy's real, fresh and natural qualities.

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Dairy is real nutrition 
Together, milk, cheese and yogurt deliver nine essential nutrients in a variety of tasty, affordable and convenient options.  Three of the nutrients dairy foods provide - calcium, potassium and vitamin D - have been coined as "nutrients of concern" by the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans because the population falls short on their intake.  It's because of dairy's contribution to the diet that the Guidelines recommend three servings of low-fat or fat-free dairy foods every day for people ages nine and older.

Dairy is fresh 
It takes less than 48 hours for milk to travel from the farm to the grocery store. This means families are guaranteed a fresh, nutritious product every time they shop the dairy aisle.  To learn more about dairy's local journey from farm to store, visit: http://www.dairymakessense.com/farming/farm-to-store/.

Dairy is natural
Milk is a natural source of high-quality protein for healthy muscles and calcium for strong bones (8 grams protein and about 300 mg calcium per 8 ounces).  This isn't the case for most imitation dairy beverages, which are often fortified and/or fall short on these important nutrients. 

"Dairy foods and beverages deliver on nutrition, value and taste," says Stephanie Cundith, a registered dietitian with Midwest Dairy Council. "June Dairy Month is a great time to highlight dairy's benefits, and to help connect families to the farm so they can learn more about where dairy foods come from and the people who produce them."  

To celebrate June Dairy Month, families can:

Additional dairy recipes, including a "Dairy Farm Mom" collection, as well as nutrition information can be found at DairyMakesSense.com.  For more about dairy farm families, visit MidwestDairy.com.

Midwest Dairy Association® is a non-profit organization funded by dairy farmers to build demand for dairy products through integrated marketing, nutrition education and research. Midwest Dairy is funded by checkoff dollars from dairy farmers in a 10-state region, including Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas and eastern Oklahoma. For more information, visit www.midwestdairy.com. Follow us on Twitter and find us on Facebook at Midwest Dairy.

SOURCE Midwest Dairy Association