Celebrate Earth Day, Enjoy Sustainably Produced Wisconsin Dairy
Celebrate Earth Day by enjoying sustainably produced Wisconsin dairy products and turning that milk carton into a recycled creation!
Leading up to Earth Day, it is important to know that Wisconsin dairy products are responsibly and sustainably produced by dairy farmers. The carbon footprint of a glass of milk is two-thirds less than it was 70 years ago, yet it still has the same nutritional benefits and great taste. Additionally, producing a gallon of milk has 19% less greenhouse gas emissions than it did in 2007. That’s equivalent to the amount of carbon dioxide removed from the atmosphere by half a million acres of U.S. forests every year.
Wisconsin dairy farms use fewer resources due to innovative practices in cow comfort, improved feed and genetics, and modern barn designs. The environmental impact of producing a gallon of milk in 2017 shrunk significantly, requiring 30% less water, 21% less land, and a 19% smaller carbon footprint than it did in 2007 (Dairy Management, Inc., 2020).
Wisconsin is also home to several farmer-led conservation programs, such as the University of Wisconsin (UW)-Discovery Farms, that look to solve environmental challenges and improve farming practices. Researching Wisconsin's diverse agricultural landscape, UW-Discovery Farms uses working farms that are facing various environmental challenges and takes a real-world approach to find innovative ways to safeguard our land and water resources.
More than 97% of the Wisconsin milk supply comes from farms participating in the National Dairy Farmers Assuring Responsible Management™ (FARM) program (Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin, 2020). The four program silos – animal care, environmental stewardship, antibiotic stewardship, and workforce development – help to show consumers that the dairy industry holds itself to the highest standards. Certified experts evaluate farmers at least once every three years, and third-party verification ensures program integrity from authorities outside of the dairy industry.
Dairy products are produced with the well-being of the planet, animals, and you in mind. Wisconsin milk, cheese, and yogurt provide nutrients people of all ages need to grow and maintain stronger bodies and minds. One eight-ounce serving of milk has eight grams of protein that help build strong muscles. Real dairy is also a simple source of immune-boosting nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin D, and protein. Dairy is good for you and made with care for the planet. From the farm to your fridge, U.S. dairy is taking steps to reduce food waste and greenhouse gas emissions.
Feel good about choosing real Wisconsin dairy and continue our dairy farmers’ commitment to the environment by making your own recycled milk carton creations.
Try these fun creations at home! Below are directions on how to make them.
Learn how Wisconsin Dairy Farmers dairy farm families are committed to sustaining and preserving
the environment at https://www.wisconsindairy.org/Our-Farms/Sustainability.
Dairy Farmers of WIsconsin. (2020, November 3). Our Cows. Retrieved from Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin: https://www.wisconsindairy.org/Our-Farms/Our-Cows
Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin. (2020, November 3). Wisconsin Cow Power. Retrieved from Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin: https://www.wisconsindairy.org/Our-Farms/Sustainability
DATCP. (2020, November 3). Producer-Led Watershed Protection Grants. Retrieved from State of Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection: https://datcp.wi.gov/Pages/Programs_Services/ProducerLedProjects.aspx
Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy. (2020, November 3). U.S. Dairy's Environmental Footprint. Retrieved from US Dairy: https://www.usdairy.com/getmedia/c9d3f013-c34c-42b4-9ee0-18885837bdc6/dairysenvironmentalfootprintbrochure%20july.pdf.pdf.aspx
US EPA. (2020, November 3). AgStar Livestock Anaerobic Digester Database. Retrieved from the United States Environmental Protection Agency: https://www.epa.gov/agstar/livestock-anaerobic-digester-database
· Dairy Management, Inc., usdairy.com
· Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, usdairy.com/about-us/innovation-center