More Milk to Go with Santa's Cookies

Dairy Farmers pledge 160,000 litres of additional milk to food banks during busy holiday season

MISSISSAUGA, ON, Dec. 10, 2012 /CNW/ - With the holiday season in full swing, Dairy Farmers of Ontario (DFO) is pleased to announce it is increasing its donation to Ontario food banks through December and January by nearly 150 per cent.

As part of an effort to help food banks cope with rising demand and to help spread some Christmas cheer, DFO, on behalf of all its members, will donate an additional 160,000 litres of milk to the Ontario Association of Food Banks (OAFB), on top of the ongoing monthly contribution of 65,000 litres.

"We recognize the real need in the community to help those who struggle to provide their families with nutritious food, especially at this time of year," explains Bill Emmott, DFO Chair. "It's crucial for industry to step up.  This is our way of giving back to Ontario and the people of our province during the holiday season."

Ontario's dairy farmers are the single largest donor to the OAFB - donating close to one million litres of milk every year. Throughout the year about 500 dairy farmers in Ontario donate a portion of their own milk; in coordination with industry partners the Ontario Milk Transportation Association and the fluid milk processors in the Ontario Dairy Council, the milk is then delivered to food banks throughout the year.

"Hunger and access to fresh, nutritious food continues to be a problem in Canada," says Amanda King, Associate Manager, Fundraising, Membership, and Communications at the OAFB. "DFO has always been one of the biggest supporters of the food bank program, and with this additional donation we will be able to serve thousands more families in need during this busy season."

The OAFB, which released its annual Hunger Report earlier this week, found that in a single month more than 412, 998 families in Ontario accessed food banks, with as many as 17,190 households doing so for the first time.

Tom Kane, president of the Ontario Dairy Council was pleased to confirm that processors were able to facilitate this generous donation.  "This program represents what's best about our industry.  We are pleased to work with our industry partners to provide more fresh fluid milk to those in need at this holiday time."

The donations, to be delivered beginning next week, will quickly find their way into food hampers across the province.  To learn more about the role of individual farmers, transporters and processors please visit www.milk.org.

Dairy Farmers of Ontario is the marketing group for all dairy farmers in Ontario and is totally financed by them.

SOURCE: Dairy Farmers of Ontario

For further information:

For more information or a copy of the Annual Report,
please contact:
Bill Mitchell, Assistant Director, Communications and Planning Division
905-821-8970   bmitchel@milk.org

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Dairy Farmers of Ontario

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