The stakes are high for a re-introduced bill named The Dairy Pride Act. An FDA ruling in February allowed soy and nut beverages to be called milk, but it has caused quite a stir among farmers and lawmakers in Wisconsin.
How milk is defined is currently up for debate, depending on who you ask.
David Trimner, general manager for Miltrim Farms in Athens, said, “It’s important for us that we are well represented in what our products actually are and how they’re made. So, by diversifying or separating out what is truly milk, I think also goes back to the farmers and all the work that we put in to making our product.”
For Trimner, it’s as simple as the definition. “A lot of these imitation products that try to play off as milk such as soy milk and oat milk, that’s definitely not the definition of what milk is,” added Trimner.
Congressman Derrick Van Orden (WI-03) agrees and said the nutritional value of milk is a critical part of a healthy diet, especially for kids.
“I believe that it’s going to financially benefit the state. I also know that it will benefit our younger folks and folk my age because milk is incredibly nutritious,” said Rep. Van Orden.
He has joined a number of other representatives to introduce the dairy pride act. “It’s very important that consumers understand what they’re consuming and that’s what this bill does. I’m very happy that my democrat and republican colleagues have joined in getting this bill into the house.”
“Farmers here in Wisconsin put in a lot of work, dairy farmers in particular, to make good quality milk that’s from a system of an animal. So with that, I think that’s very important for consumers to know what product they’re getting,” said Trimner.
For some, it’s just a label, but for the hard-working dairy farmers of Wisconsin, it’s an argument worth fighting till the cows come home.
Source : WSAW March 10th 2023