Andrew M. Cuomo, Governor | Richard A. Ball, Commissioner
Jola Szubielski, Lisa Koumjian 518-457-0752

June 16, 2016

Agriculture Commissioner Joins the Great American Milk Drive in Celebration of Dairy Month

Donations Benefit Children and Families in Need Through the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York

In celebration of Dairy Month and to encourage donations to the Great American Milk Drive through the month of June, State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball joined American Dairy Association North East, Price Chopper/Market 32, and New York dairy farmers in their mission to bring much needed milk to children and families in need.  All donations made through this partnership will benefit Feeding America Food Banks, including the 23-county area serviced by the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern NY.

Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “Milk is an important part of a healthy diet for all of us, especially children.  Sadly, millions of kids miss out on milk’s nutritious benefits during the summer months when schools are closed and they lose access to free or reduced-price meal programs.  The Great American Milk Drive is a great opportunity to help fill that void while helping to support our dairy farmers. I encourage everyone to celebrate our State’s great dairy industry this month and join in this important cause.”

Milk is one of the top five most requested foods by food bank clients, but because it is perishable, it is rarely donated.  The Great American Milk Drive, launched by the Feeding America Organization in 2014, was created to help deliver in-demand, fresh milk to families who don’t have regular access to it.  So far, more than 700,000 gallons that’s over 12 million servings - of milk have been delivered to families across the country. 

Throughout the month of June at all 135 Price Chopper/Market 32 stores, customers may opt to make $1 and/or $5 donations at the checkout. Price Chopper/Market 32 will match all donations made by its customers up to $10,000.  Donations can also be made at

Joanne Dwyer, Director of Food Industry Relations & Business Development Representative, Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York said, “The Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York is so grateful for the continued support of Commissioner Ball, Price Chopper/Market32, the American Dairy Association North East, and Garelick Farms for coming together again to help us provide more fresh milk for families in need.  We are striving to increase our distribution of nutritious dairy products to the 1,000 non-profit programs we serve in 23 counties, and Price Chopper/Market32’s in-store events and month long donation campaign will further raise awareness about hunger with both the food industry and consumers.”

Melissa Malcolm, Director of National Sales & Field Marketing for the Milk Processor Education Program said, “The Great American Milk Drive is dedicated to fighting to end hunger in our communities. It’s important for us to deliver milk this summer to children who may be missing out on the essential nutrients that fuel playing, learning and growing. Next time you pick up a gallon of milk for your family, consider donating to feed local children and families’ right here in Northeastern New York.”

“Our family farm works hard every day to produce nutritious, wholesome milk,” said Kris Brock, of Brock Family Dairy Farm in Schaghticoke, New York.  “We take our responsibility to feed families, not only in our community but across the nation, very seriously.”

New York’s dairy industry is the leading agricultural producer in the state. Currently, there are nearly 5,000 dairy farms in the state who have a combined total of more than 600,000 dairy cows.  In 2015, New York was the fourth largest milk producer in the country, producing 14.1 billion pounds of milk, approximately seven percent of the nation’s total milk supply.

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2016 Press Releases