|Top 5: 1) Water 26.5%, 2) Soda 20.9%, 3) Beer 9.5%, 4) Milk 9.3%, 5) Coffee 8.5%|
Approximately 75% of milk consumption occurs at home. Breakfast is the meal we’re most likely to drink milk. Nearly 50% of milk consumption occurs in the morning, 20% at noon/afternoon and 30% in the evening. American’s busy, on-the-go lifestyle has us eating more meals away from home so less milk is being consumed.
Milk is packaged in a variety of sizes from gallon jugs to half gallon cartons to single serve. Currently, 70% to 75% of the drinking milk sold is in gallon containers which are consumed at home.
|Jack enjoying some milk at home|
“On average, 50% of people over the age of 18 don’t drink milk. Half of the people who don’t drink milk say they don’t because they believe they are lactose intolerant. Scientific studies show lactose-intolerance isn’t that prevalent. So a lot of people are not drinking milk who could be drinking it,” according to Tom Gallagher, CEO of Dairy Management Inc.
Milk has been an important part of a healthy diet for generations. Research supports disease prevention and health promotion from vitamin D, calcium, protein, probiotics, whey and the overall package of nutrients that milk provides. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines recommends consuming 3 servings of dairy daily and increasing our vitamin D intake.
The Dairy Research Institute, a non-profit organization affiliated with the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, published its top 2010-11 dairy research insights. Included on the list:
- Adequate dairy intake may help reduce incidence of Type 2 diabetes.
- Adequate dairy intake can improve key metabolic risk factors associated with obesity.
- Dairy consumption may help reduce the risk of heart disease.
- Establishing good milk drinking habits early in life can lead to improved nutrient intake into teen and later years.
- Among beverages, milk has the highest nutrient density scores in relation to greenhouse gas emissions.
- Dairy protein excels for nutrition and product value for food/beverage manufactures.
As dairy farmers, we produce a raw product that is shipped to a processing plant where it is pasteurized and made into a finished product like milk, cheese, butter, ice cream or yogurt. We dairy producers don’t control product packaging, labeling or marketing. We depend on milk processors to make products that meet consumer’s needs. Is the dairy industry succeeding at providing products consumers want? Are we packaging, labeling and marketing our products to reach their full potential? The numbers show milk consumption declining so I think we could do better. What do you think?