Dairy farms across America are going out of business at an alarming rate. Entire communities are feeling the effects of the closures, including an eroding tax base for rural communities, struggling churches and schools, and mounting financial debt for dairy farmers. Without a turnaround, many remaining dairy farms face an unknown future and could disappear along with a rural way of life that sustained generations of families.  

To help change this situation, Prairie Farms Dairy Inc. Edwardsville, Ill., launched the “Join Our MOOvement” campaign. The company said the campaign, launched on National Farmers Day (Oct. 12), is a grassroots effort that seeks to reverse these misfortunes by connecting consumers with dairy farmers through the products they produce.

The idea is easy to understand, the company said: When consumers choose Prairie Farms, they are supporting hundreds of local dairy farmers while buying the “best of the best” dairy products for their families. In addition, the campaign seeks to build on consumer desires to have a clear view of the food they are consuming and where it originates.   

“National Farmers Day is the perfect day to thank our dairy farmers for being tireless heroes and champions of agriculture,” said Rebecca Leinenbach, vice president of marketing and communications for Prairie Farms. “Launching the Join Our MOOvement campaign is a way to pay tribute to them for their help in feeding America.

“Consumers are seeking fresh, authentic and high-quality products, which aligns well with the people behind our products — our dairy farm families,” she added. “We’re asking consumers to Join Our MOOvement because our journey begins on the farm, where our families are working hard to care for their cows and the land so Prairie Farms can produce and deliver fresh, wholesome and nutritious dairy products every day of the year.”

By participating in the campaign, not only are consumers pledging to help dairy farmers, but they are also giving back to charities enrolled in Prairie Farms' Our Caps, Your Cause program. Each week, the top eight charities, determined by the highest number of votes, will receive 1,000 cap credits — $50 for each charity. Prairie Farms said it is committed to making an impact in the communities it serves, and over $180,000 has been donated to local charities through the program.

Consumers looking to support local dairy farmers may visit the Join Our MOOvement campaign page and sign a pledge to help dairy farmers and their families by purchasing Prairie Farms products and encouraging others to join. Supporters may then sign up to receive special Prairie Farms product offers, be included in the 80 days of prize-pack giveaway drawings, and gain membership in the MOOvement loyalty club with members-only offers. Anyone interested in taking a local dairy farm tour can also register to do so on the page, Prairie Farms said.

The multi-year campaign will be supported by social media, email blasts, influencer endorsements, earned media and online advertising.

“Our 80th anniversary celebration will continue during the last 80 days of 2018, and we’re aiming to gather 80,000 signatures in support of our dairy farmers,” Leinenbach said. “It’s a lofty goal, but I’m excited to get the multi-year campaign off the ground and running.”