Rising unemployment and school closures are putting added stress on America’s food pantries. As a result, food banks across the nation are being hit hard by complications of the coronavirus.
Two dairy farmer organizations have joined forces to get truckloads of milk to those in need. American Dairy Association North East, representing over 10,000 dairy farmers, and Dairy Farmers of America, a national cooperative owned by dairy farm families across the U.S., has teamed up with Dean Foods processing plants across the Northeast to help deliver much needed milk to communities across the region.
“Fortunately, dairy farmers have not experienced a disruption in milk production, and there is no shortage of milk,” said Rick Naczi, CEO, American Dairy Association North East. “Milk is an essential item for nutritional wellbeing and meal preparation, especially for households with children. We’re doing everything we can to make sure families have access to milk.”
This week over 50,000 gallons of milk are being delivered to food pantries served by City Harvest of Queens, New York, Rolling Harvest Food Rescue serving counties in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Share Food Program of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Fayette Food Bank of Republic, Pennsylvania, Weinberg Northeast Regional Food Bank of Pittston, Pennsylvania, Community Action Planning Council of Watertown, New York, Food Bank of Delaware in Newark, Delaware, and the Salvation Army in Syracuse, New York.
“As a dairy cooperative owned by family farmers across the country, we are dedicated to helping provide nutritious food for family tables,” said Jennifer Huson, Senior Director Marketing, Council Affairs and Industry Relations for DFA Northeast. “Knowing that millions of Americans are struggling right now to make ends meet and with food banks being a critical local resource to help feed those families, we knew that we had to figure out a solution.”
“We are so happy to be able to give such a valuable food item to our community and share with other food rescue partners,” said Jamie McKnight, Program & Development Director of Rolling Harvest Food Rescue. “This milk we be distributed by the end of the day and we will continue to schedule deliveries as long as there is a need.”