Dairy farmers celebrate new a milestone of success in Virginia
GRETNA, VA, December 12, 2023 /24-7PressRelease/ — The Dairy Alliance, a nonprofit funded by dairy farm families in the Southeast, recently celebrated a major milestone for Gretna Middle School in Gretna, Virginia. The Dairy Alliance partnered with the local school, the Virginia State Dairymen’s Association (VSDA), Virginia dairy farmers Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell Motley, and other key partners to commemorate the school’s switch from carton milk to bulk milk dispensers. The partners joined hands with a special ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, December 8, 2023.
“This is such a momentous occasion for Gretna Middle School and was a collaborative effort among various partners who all helped make this switch to bulk milk possible,” said Geri Berdak, Chief Executive Officer at The Dairy Alliance. “We are incredibly grateful to all our partners throughout the state of Virginia who understand and appreciate the importance of milk and how we can better serve the children in this community. This switch enables us to further connect our area farmers with their communities.”
The switch to bulk milk will impact 430 students at Gretna Middle School. The school will receive one 3-spout dispenser and one 2-spout dispenser that will be supplied with milk directly from local dairy farms. This move promotes both the nutritional benefits of milk and support for the local agricultural community. The dispensers are funded by Virginia State Dairymen’s Association with supplemental financial support from the Virginia Cattlemen’s Association to equip schools with additional accessories to ensure program success.
The Dairy Alliance provides technical support to implement the dispensers including training for the staff, educational materials, promotional materials, and more. The organization provides a myriad of free resources and programs for schools across the Southeast.
The switch to bulk milk at Gretna Middle School was initiated by local dairy farmers Roy VanDerHyde and Tommy Motley. The two went to the Pittsylvania County School Board and advocated for the transition. The Dairy Alliance then hosted a training session with Director of School Nutrition Programs Kara Scott to share the organization’s various programming, including the benefits of switching from cartons to bulk milk dispensers.
“The benefits of switching to bulk milk includes improving the taste, reducing waste of milk and packaging, and improving the school milk experience for students,” said Roy VanDerHyde. “As a local dairy farmer, I applaud all partners involved for seeing the value of making this switch to bulk milk and supporting this transition for area middle schools. We are hopeful that this placement at Gretna Middle School will lead to more dispensers in other schools across Pittsylvania County and surrounding areas.”
Dairy milk is packed with 13 nutrients and delivers various benefits across ages. The natural high-quality protein in milk still remains unmatched as a powerhouse to support growing bodies.
For more information about The Dairy Alliance, visit https://thedairyalliance.com or follow them on Facebook or Instagram @TheDairyAlliance.
The Dairy Alliance is a nonprofit funded by dairy farm families of the Southeast. We work diligently with dairy farmers, schools, sports teams, health professionals, local organizations, state leaders, the media, and the public to promote dairy foods and knowledge about the dairy industry. Our efforts center in eight states: Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.
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