Michigan residents who depend on local food banks for meals receive an average of one gallon of milk per person per year – even though the United States Department of Agriculture recommends adults drink 68 gallons each year. The United Dairy Industry of Michigan (UDIM) has partnered with The Kroger Co. of Michigan to help relieve this shortage during the second annual “Pour It Forward” campaign.
“Pour It Forward” will run November 5 through December 16 in all 124 Michigan Kroger stores. During the campaign, Kroger customers are invited to purchase paper gallon slips for $3 each. Kroger and UDIM will contribute a minimum of one gallon of milk to local food banks for every paper gallon purchased.
In 2013, the “Pour It Forward” campaign raised more than 32,900 gallons of milk for Forgotten Harvest and the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan. Based on last year’s success, UDIM and Kroger expanded the program with the goal of raising 50,000 gallons of milk to benefit six mid-Michigan food banks in 2014, including Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, Food Bank of South Central Michigan, Food Gatherers, Forgotten Harvest, Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan, and Greater Lansing Food Bank.
“Milk continues to be the number one food item requested by Michigan food banks,” said Jayne Homco, president, The Kroger Co. of Michigan. “This fact, coupled with Kroger customers’ generous support of ‘Pour It Forward’ during the first year, led to our decision to grow the program’s reach. We are pleased to join our customers and associates and the United Dairy Industry of Michigan to ensure more individuals and families get the milk they need.”
Milk is America’s number one source of calcium, potassium, and Vitamin D, and is a good source of high quality protein. One gallon of milk will provide 16 children with a single glass of milk.
“Hunger is such a serious issue and milk, with its nine essential nutrients, is the ideal product to make a difference,” said UDIM Chief Executive Officer Sharon Toth. “On behalf of all Michigan dairy farm families, UDIM is incredibly proud to partner with Kroger to help food banks fill the nutrient gap and increase access to milk. There isn’t anything closer to our farmers’ hearts than feeding people.”
UDIM and The Kroger Co. of Michigan are credited with creating the “Pour It Forward” campaign adopted on a national level by The Kroger Co. to benefit local food banks affiliated with Feeding America. The “Pour It Forward” campaign is part of the Great American Milk Drive, the first national program to help deliver nutrient-rich gallons of milk to hungry families. The Milk Processor Education Program, National Dairy Council and Feeding America partnered to launch the Great American Milk Drive in April 2014.
For more information, visit www.milkmeansmore.org.
About the United Dairy Industry of Michigan
The United Dairy Industry of Michigan is the umbrella organization for the Dairy Council of Michigan and the American Dairy Association of Michigan. On behalf of Michigan’s dairy farm families, these non-profit organizations provide science-based nutrition information to, and in collaboration with, a variety of stakeholders committed to fostering a healthier society, including health professionals, educators, school nutrition directors, academia, industry, consumers and media. For more information, visit www.MilkMeansMore.org.
About The Kroger Co. of Michigan
Incorporated in Michigan in 1909 and headquartered in Novi, The Kroger Co. of Michigan includes 17,000 associates, 124 Kroger stores, 58 fuel centers, 102 pharmacies and the Michigan Dairy.
Kroger, one of the world's largest retailers, employs more than 375,000 associates who serve customers in 2,640 supermarkets and multi-department stores in 34 states and the District of Columbia under two dozen local banner names including Kroger, City Market, Dillons, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry's, Harris Teeter, Jay C, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs and Smith's. The company also operates 786 convenience stores, 320 fine jewelry stores, 1,240 supermarket fuel centers and 38 food processing plants in the U.S. Recognized by Forbes as the most generous company in America, Kroger supports hunger relief, breast cancer awareness, the military and their families, and more than 30,000 schools and grassroots organizations. Kroger contributes food and funds equal to 200 million meals a year through more than 80 Feeding America food bank partners. A leader in supplier diversity, Kroger is a proud member of the Billion Dollar Roundtable and the U.S. Hispanic Chamber's Million Dollar Club. For more information visit www.Kroger.com