Edgar FFA will be distributing 100 gallons of milk today free to local families through the district’s lunch food service. They will be giving away the milk during lunch pick-up outside the school auditorium from 11:30-12:30.
“There’s basically a challenge going around for all the state FFA chapters to support the dairy industry,” said Matt Reinders, Agriculture Instructor and Edgar FFA Advisor. “Immediately, I’m like ‘challenge accepted!’ I made a phone call right away to purchase the milk. It’s a nice challenge, and a way to support the dairy industry.”
Edgar responded to the challenge posted by Granton FFA, which donated milk last week. Edgar IGA helped by supplying the milk, twist ties, and other supplies. Kemp’s Dairy, which supplies IGA with milk, heard about the challenge and charged the milk at-cost.
“IGA made no profit from it. They were happy to support this project,” said Reinders.
“Many businesses are affected by this pandemic and the dairy industry is no different because they lost a lot of their market,” he added . “What’s unique in our area is the dairy industry is so interwoven into everything. It’s not just the farm that’s going to go bankrupt. It’s a family, someone’s home. Any support or publicity we can bring to that is a positive. That’s what we’re going for here.”
Other area chapters that have participated include Stratford FFA, Marathon FFA, Loyal FFA, and Colby FFA. New Richmond FFA even did a “Ding Dong Ditch” with cheese curds, where they purchased cheese curds, left them on doorsteps, rang the doorbell, and ran.
“I think this is a win-win,” said Reinders. “There are families that are struggling, so this is a great way to get a great food product to them. It’s also a way to shine a light a bit more on the dairy industry.”
“Clark and Marathon Counties are the dairy counties in the dairy state,” he added. “If these dairies struggle or go out of business, it’s going to have a ripple effect to all of us and area businesses. Time will tell if our goal succeeds, but hopefully people buy more milk. I encourage everyone to support the dairy industry. Buy milk, cheese, ice cream…be mindful of dairy products the next time you go to the store.”