One out of two kids ages 9 and up fall short on calcium, vitamin D and potassium – essential nutrients they need to grow strong.1 And when school lets out for summer, that risk may be even greater for over 22 million kids who are served by free or reduced-price meal programs during the school year. For many kids in need, even basic staples like milk and the critical nutrients it provides are missing.
Milk is the top food source for calcium, vitamin D and potassium.2 That’s why Feeding America®, the nation’s largest domestic hunger relief organization – alongside America’s dairy farmers and milk companies – is working to pour more milk for kids in need this June for National Dairy Month. The Great American Milk Drive makes it easy for consumers to donate nutrient-rich milk to local children and families who face hunger.
With eight grams of protein per serving and three of the top nutrients most likely to be missing in kids’ diet—calcium, vitamin D and potassium— milk is an efficient and affordable way for America’s feeding programs to get critical nourishment to kids and families who need it.
Although some programs like the USDA’s Summer Food Service Program help to provide meals when school is not in session, the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program do not reach children during the summer months.
“At Feeding America, we know that fresh milk is a challenging item to donate. But we also know milk is one of the most requested items among families and individuals served in our network,” said Andy Wilson, Chief Development Officer at Feeding America. “Thanks to our work with The Great American Milk Drive, we have a way to help families in need pour more milk for their children, helping to ensure they have the nutrients they need to thrive.”
Deliver Nutrient-Rich Milk Right in Your Own Community
Since 2014, Feeding America has partnered with The Great American Milk Drive to help deliver milk to its nationwide network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs. Through this first-of-its kind program, more than 1.5 million gallons – that’s more than 24 million servings – of milk have been delivered to food banks. Yet, there’s still more to do.
While consumers are generous with canned foods and dry goods, food banks are only able to provide the equivalent of less than one gallon of milk per person, per year.
“Milk can be harder to donate because it’s perishable, which is why this program is so critical in helping to ensure that all kids have the nutrients they need to grow and develop,” said Victor Zaborsky, Vice President of Marketing for MilkPEP. “America’s milk brands and dairy families are committed to solving hunger in our communities, and together, with The Great American Milk Drive, have set a goal of providing 50 million servings of fresh nutrient-rich milk to kids and families served by Feeding America by 2020.”
This Dairy Month – and all summer long – The Great American Milk Drive makes it easy to deliver fresh milk, including its nine essential nutrients, to help power the simple joys of summer for kids and families. For as little as $5 at milklife.com/give, you can deliver a gallon of fresh milk to a family in need right in your own community.
Learn more about The Great American Milk Drive at milklife.com/give.
 U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Scientific Report of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee. Appendix E-2.1. First Print, 2015.
 Fulgoni VL, Keast DR, Quann EE, Auestad N. Food sources of calcium, phosphorus, vitamin D, and potassium in the U.S. The FASEB Journal. 2010;24:325.1.
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Feeding America® is the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States. Through a network of 200 food banks and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs, we provide meals to more than 46 million people each year. Feeding America also supports programs that prevent food waste and improve food security among the people we serve; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger. Donate. Volunteer. Advocate. Educate. Together we can solve hunger. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.
MilkPEP, Washington, D.C., is funded by the nation's milk companies, who are committed to educating consumers about the many nutritious benefits of milk and ensuring all children have access to fresh, wholesome milk. The MilkPEP Board runs marketing programs, including Milk Life, a multi-faceted campaign highlighting the important role milk plays in helping families reach their full potential, Milk It! a campaign for kids built around their love of milk, and Built with Chocolate Milk, which inspires athletes to perform at their best and recover with lowfat chocolate milk. For more information, go to milklife.com and builtwithchocolatemilk.com.
About National Dairy Council
National Dairy Council® (NDC), the non-profit organization founded by dairy farmers, is committed to nutrition education and research-based communications. NDC provides science-based nutrition information to, and in collaboration with, a variety of stakeholders committed to fostering a healthier nation, including health professionals, educators, school nutrition directors, academia, industry, consumers and media. Established in 1915, NDC comprises a staff of registered dietitians and nutrition research and communications experts across the country. NDC is committed to promoting child health and wellness through programs such as Fuel Up to Play 60. Developed by NDC and the National Football League (NFL), Fuel Up to Play 60 encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods and achieve at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. For more information, visit www.NationalDairyCouncil.org.