Milk processors and dairy farmers are behind an anti-hunger campaign intended to put fresh milk on the tables of America’s neediest citizens.

In their guest blog column today for, executives from the Milk Processor Education Program, Washington, D.C., and Dairy Management Inc., Rosemont, Ill., write about the upcoming Great American Milk Drive, which they call “the first-ever nationwide program that will encourage consumers to donate milk to hungry families.”

MilkPEP and the National Dairy Council (a DMI affiliate organization) are working with Feeding America, America’s largest network of food banks, to distribute milk (via coupons) to food bank clients. Milk is the top food requested by Feeding America’s clients, but food banks can’t meet the demand because milk is rarely donated, write Tom Gallagher, CEO, Dairy Management Inc. and Julia Kadison, Interim CEO, MilkPEP.

The milk drive, which launches April 2 in New York City, encourages consumers to give online or through a text message from their cell phones.

The authors write: “Together, we’re putting millions of dollars of marketing support and thousands of hours of staff time behind The Great American Milk Drive to elevate the issue, build a consistent and sustainable supply for food banks and encourage donations. This is a big problem that won’t be solved overnight. So we’ve made a multi-year commitment – which means you’ll have plenty of opportunities to build customized local programs to fit your business and meet the needs in your community.”

More details about this effort is in their open letter to the dairy community, "Let's put milk (and its nutrition) on the tables of the most needy.“