Get ready for a social media blitz on June 16 as MilkPEP uses the Great American Milk Drive campaign to raise awareness of the urgent need for fresh milk.

Kroger shoppers donated more than 100,000 gallons of fresh milk to The Great American Milk Drive in 2014. Prairie Farms donated more than 10,500 gallons to 21 Feeding America food banks in the Midwest last year. Other dairy processors undertook similar efforts. In all MilkPEP delivered nearly 300,000 gallons of fresh milk to Feeding America food banks all over the county.

That was last year. This is now: School children are out for the summer. For many, their most nutritious meals are served at school; in fact, 22 million children rely on free or reduced-price in-school meal programs, according to the Milk Processor Education Program, the marketing group funded by milk processors. So on June 16, MilkPEP is leading a nationwide challenge to generate as many donations as possible for The Great American Milk Drive. The donations will be converted to vouchers that food banks can give to clients, who exchange them for fresh milk at retailers. In social media channels, MilkPEP is using the hashtag #MilkDrive and is referring to the drive as “The Mooovement.”

5 ways milk processors can get involved in MilkPEP’s Great American Milk Drive this month

MilkPEP suggests these ways in which processors can take part in The Great American Milk Drive and give back to their local communities:

  • Local Events. Host an event with a local food bank to raise awareness of the program and inspire donations. Use MilkPEP-provided customizable media materials and tips to conduct media outreach surrounding the event.
  • Match Programs. Offer a donation match based on brand sales for a given period of time. Processors can promote their programs with media relations, social media and more.
  • Social Promotion. Spread the word about the drive and leverage the campaign’s online assets – including monthly social content provided by MilkPEP – through brand social channels.
  • Retailer Partnerships. Identify potential retail partnership opportunities to develop a special promotion and/or event to raise awareness and drive milk gallon donations.
  • Support Local Food Banks. Provide first-run milk to local food banks.

Kroger shoppers donated more than 100,000 gallons to the Great American Milk Drive

Kroger is a retailer with more than 1,600 stores and a processor of fluid milk and other dairy products. For three weeks in September 2014, it partnered with MilkPEP in a promotion called Pour It Forward. In-store marketing support included front-of-store banners, cooler clings at the dairy case, table tents, stanchion signs and cashier stickers. Shoppers at checkout had the option of adding $1, $3 or $5 to their grocery bill. Donations were converted to vouchers for fresh milk that food banks distributed to their clients. More than 100,000 gallons were donated to the Great American Milk Drive, which in turn led to $400,000 in incremental milk sales, according to MilkPEP and Kroger.

Dairy co-op Prairie Farms was honored for its efforts to bring fresh milk to needy families

“Pouring It On” was a campaign by the dairy cooperative Prairie Farms. The co-op worked with MilkPEP to raise awareness of the need for milk and to encourage donations. Prairie Farms conducted media relations in 21 markets, and the food banks generated their own local media coverage. In all, the partners generated 1.5 million media impressions. Prairie Farms Dairy, Geneva, Ill., was honored by the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy for its efforts with the Northern Illinois Food Bank. (Read more here.) 

MilkPEP has point-of-sale and media materials for members. Visit or call 800-945-MILK (6455).