“Thank you, partners.” Those are the words that Organic Valley’s CEO George Siemon and his management team spoke when we visited them last fall to prepare our 2010 Processor of the Year story (December’s cover story).
“Thank you, partners.”
Those are the words that Organic Valley’s CEO George Siemon and his management team spoke when we visited them last fall to prepare our 2010 Processor of the Year story (December’s cover story). They are passionate about recognizing their numerous processing partners - milk handlers, hard-working bottlers, cheese-cutters, butter-churners, suppliers, retailers and consumers - all the while being the voice of their 1,600-plus cooperative family farms.
That same month we traveled to Ovid, Mich., to interview the executive team at Michigan Milk Producers Association and to tour their facility, the winner of our 2010 Plant of the Year award. This balancing plant operates seven days a week, 24 hours a day, in large part due to a very impressive two-year $62 million dollar expansion.
You’ll have the chance to congratulate both teams at this year’s Dairy Forum awards luncheon, Jan. 24 in Miami. I hope to see you there.
These two award winners help to demonstrate that while the recession has taken its toll on many industries, dairy processing has remained a bright spot the last few years. Across the nation we’ve been seeing growth and expansions such as, new cheese plants by Jerome Cheese Co. and Leprino Foods to new ice cream operations by Graeter’s and Pierre’s. In the yogurt sector, General Mills has been pouring millions into plants in Michigan and Tennessee.
The slow economy has brought opportunities to expand while construction costs are low. And, the industry has benefited from making foods that consumers still buy (and want to buy), even in hard times. We are fortunate to be in the dairy foods business.
Meanwhile, at Dairy Foods, we’ve ended our third full year of momentous change since the introduction of a special section called Dairy Field Reports. The results and the response continue to be beyond our expectations. The combination of Dairy Foods’ marketing, product development and formulation coverage, and Dairy Field Reports’ processing, operations, packaging, logistics, food safety and sustainability coverage continues to deliver the most complete media package serving the dairy processing industry.
Speaking of sustainability, we’re proud to introduce a new column, Spotlight on Sustainability. This quarterly feature, written by Clay Detlefsen of the International Dairy Foods Association, promises to deliver keen insight. On page 124, he tells how processors are saving thousands of dollars by reclaiming waste heat.
We were fortunate to visit with many of you last year, whether it was at your headquarters, in your plant, at the International Dairy Show or elsewhere. This access to your boardroom and your trust allows us to provide reporting and content unique to the market.
Combined with dairyfoods.com - where you’ll find behind-the-scenes photos from our plant visits, videos from supplier partners, news feeds and more - and Dairy Product Innovations, our monthly e-newsletter focused on new products and trends, Dairy Foods is a formidable and indispensible source of industry information. And now you can stay connected with us wherever you are via Facebook, Twitter and our professional network on LinkedIn.
Each January, we publish our Supplier Capabilities Spotlights, giving our advertisers a chance to tell you more about their companies and the products and services they provide. These companies are ready to partner with you to conquer today’s business challenges to achieve tomorrow’s business goals. Please continue to support our many advertisers.
We hope Dairy Foods continues to be your go-to guide for success in the dynamic world of dairy food manufacturing.
Thank you, partners.