PA Dairymen’s Association’s New Campaign Focuses on Buying Local and Supporting Family Farmers

Milk, which is the official beverage of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, is a crucial cornerstone of our state’s agricultural economy. PA is home to more than 6,200 dairy farm families, and, as an industry, dairy contributes $12.6 billion in annual revenue for Pennsylvania. During COVID-19, milk has been in high demand at markets and grocery stores, but the supply chain has nevertheless been disrupted and challenged due to business, school and government shutdowns.

As PA’s dairy farming families struggle to cope with these tough times, the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association recently launched a brand-new dairy campaign titled, “We Are Your Dairy Farmers: Stronger Together, Buy Local, Choose PA Dairy.This initiative encourages Pennsylvanians to support the local farm families who work hard daily to produce fresh, local milk and dairy products to feed us.

“During tough times, we are all in this together and will get through this together, but it takes a team. People ask what they can do to support us right now, given that the supply chain has drastically shifted away from restaurants, schools, colleges and businesses,” says Dave Smith, executive director, PA Dairymen’s Association. “Our goal is to educate everyone about the importance of our farmers to their local communities and economies, and when we buy local, and choose PA dairy or PA Preferred products, we are getting 100%-guaranteed Pennsylvania-produced milk.”

Over the past weeks, the government’s “Stay At Home” abruptly shuttered universities, restaurants, businesses, schools, cafeterias. As these public eateries closed their doors, more families have shifted to eating all their meals at home; to meet consumer demand during this time, Pennsylvania’s farmers are continuing to milk their cows and process high-quality dairy products to be able to supply grocery store shelves and farm markets with in-demand dairy.

Smith also states, “Now more than ever, we appreciate all who are working diligently in the agricultural industry across the country, along with all our critical workers who are helping to navigate us through this pandemic. We salute our healthcare professionals, emergency responders, government leaders, and law enforcement for their noble efforts.  And we commend everyone, from our delivery services and postal workers to our veterinarians, our farmers, grocery store workers, truck drivers, take-out restaurants, processors, and others who are essential to the production, delivery and access to fresh foods for our families. People everywhere are hurting, so we must also offer our vital support to our charitable food system during these challenging times through ‘Fill A Glass With Hope‘ and through Feeding Pennsylvania and Feeding America food banks and beyond.”

PA Dairy

The Copenhaver Family owns Talview Dairy in Lebanon County, Pa. and is featured in the new Choose PA Dairy campaign

Lebanon County dairy farmer and mother, Stacey Copenhaver of Talview Dairy, who is featured with her family in the video, notes, “We encourage Pennsylvania families and businesses to add dairy to their grocery store list or farm market trips and favorite recipes. We’re hopeful consumers recognize that it takes farmers working with our dairy processors, truck drivers, our farm employees, grocery store workers and retailers to deliver our delicious, power-packed beverage and dairy products to their homes during this critical time in our nation’s history.”

The Risser Family owns Meadow Vista Dairy in Bainbridge, PA, and is also featured in the Choose PA Dairy campaign

“Our hope is that as Pennsylvanians hear our message, they appreciate how deeply we care about our animals, as a family, and how proud we are of the wonderful, nutritious product we produce every single day. Together, we can support small businesses like ours and bolster our local economies by buying and consuming Pennsylvania milk, especially during these challenging and unprecedented times,” adds Justin Risser, father of three and a and farmer at Meadow Vista Dairy in Bainbridge, PA.

To learn more, check out the new Family Resources tab on the PA Dairymen’s website, which includes fun family dairy activities such as:

  • Discover Dairy: Brings the farm to you through this interactive cross-curricular, multi-level lesson series.
  • Virtual Learning Library for elementary and middle school students.
  • Farm Life: A virtual experience where visitors can explore a dairy farm or meet a dairy farmer to learn more about farm life.
  • Free educational games, children’s books and songs, arts, crafts, experiments, family- and kids-friendly recipes, and more.
  • The Calving Corner: Highlights the live dairy cow birthing center at the PA Farm Show, where dairy farm families share life on the farm videos.

Please support our hardworking dairy farmers by buying local dairy!

  • Photos and videos: PA Dairymen's Association