Dairy Delivers Sustainable Nutrition
June is National Dairy Month! My Facebook memories are showing me pictures of many visits to dairy farms across New York State, where I learned about the ways dairy farmers are innovating in animal care, land and water management. The dairy industry has sustainability built into its DNA – farmers are diligent about managing their family farms from generation to generation. They’re always looking for smarter ways to do work, such as using technology, like cow exercise trackers to monitor health, and milk tank temperature systems that text the farmer if the temperature changes. The result of this good stewardship and passionate care is a nutritionally amazing product that delivers sustainable nutrition. This definition is really about the ongoing science-based pursuit of providing affordable, accessible, nutrient rich foods that can nourish the world’s growing population, while also protecting environmental resources now and for future generations.
The foundation of dairy sustainability is the biology of cows themselves. Dairy cows have 4 stomachs, which means they can eat a wide range of foods/plants other animals cannot eat and produce a nutrient rich product. They also produce manure, which is regulated and managed in multiple ways – for example, many farms have digesters that extract liquid and gas from manure, turning that into fertilizer for farm fields and energy for the farm and community. The fertilizer supports grass and cover crops that protect topsoil. Cows are also up cyclers of food waste – citrus pulp, almond hulls, leftover pumpkins and fruits and vegetables are all on the menu, reducing food waste and bringing nutrition benefit back to the food system.
Water is a valuable resource on dairy farms. It is recycled several times as drinking water for cows, to cool them when it’s hot, wash farm equipment and clean the barn floor. After cleaning barns, nutrient rich water can be collected and used to fertilize fields. Data tells the sustainability story best – research shows the amount of water needed to produce a gallon of milk declined 30% over a 10-year period. Overall, the dairy community has reduced the carbon footprint of milk by 63% over a recent 10-year period due to improvements in animal health, cow comfort and farm management practice. Looking ahead, they have committed to an ambitious net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Climate change mitigation is evident in how they produce the same amount of food using fewer resources but still providing great nutrients and great flavor – the 13- nutrient package that is milk and all the things we can make from it is a fantastic result of a constantly improved process. America’s dairy farmers have set aggressive new environmental sustainability goals to achieve greenhouse gas neutral neutrality, optimize water uses and improve water quality.
Dairy farm families have a long-term investment in environmental care. That torch is passed from generation to generation. I have met many of these families and could only be impressed by the dedication to their work. Cows are the center of the dairy farm and caring for them is a passion and a priority, 365 days a year. You and your family are part of the sustainable nutrition cycle and benefit as well – one of the best ways to add nutrition value to any meal or snack is to enjoy a glass of milk or add fun to any afternoon with a bowl of ice cream! Take a virtual tour of a dairy farm and learn more about where delicious dairy comes from!
Celebrate Shopping Local with Northeast Made Products!
At Price Chopper & Market 32, we pride ourselves on providing our customers with fresh, close to home ingredients. To ensure that when you’re shopping our aisles, you’re choosing from the highest quality selection of locally made products. It’s what’s best for you and your family!
Milk: Our PICS milk is bottled in New York with the help of over 500 Northeast dairy farmers: When you take home a jug of our milk, you’re taking home the product of hard-working local farmers (and cows) from our region. Located in Hudson Falls, NY, Ideal Dairy Farms is a great local dairy farm. These folks are just a few miles down the road from our Fort Edward store. Ideal Dairy first began selling milk to local residents around 1908. These days they produce over 16,000 gallons of milk per day! Despite operating for over 100 years, the vision of Ideal Dairy has remained unchanged: they’re committed to the production of quality milk for their community.
Granola: Every batch of PICS granola is hand made in Schenectady, New York. Made with the finest ingredients using artisanal baking techniques, this granola will soon be your go-to granola. Snack on it plain, add milk, top your ice cream with it – no matter how you use it, you will enjoy every bite!
Maple Syrup: We live in one of the only regions in the world with the ideal climate for maple agriculture, and we’re proud to partner with a wide variety of local maple farmers and producers here in the Northeast, who are currently preparing for this year’s maple sugaring season.
These are just a few of the wide variety of local products available in our stores. You can find many more homegrown PICS items on our shelves. Featured in our ad this week are PICS cottage cheese and eggs, two of our go-to locally made items.
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Holiday Cookies How-To
One of our favorite parts of the holiday season are the tradition and coziness of holiday cookies! Whether you’re enjoying dessert with family and friends or leaving a tasty treat for Santa, cookies play an important role in holiday celebrations. They’ve become a staple of the season!
Did you know that the tradition of leaving cookies out for Santa began during the Great Depression? It was a lesson in giving and doubled as a sign of appreciation from young children for the gifts they received, even in economic hardship. This tradition continues today as children thank Santa for his hard work during the holidays. And cookies continue to be a vital part of celebrating.
At Price Chopper & Market 32, our PICS line offers a delicious variety of cookies. From your favorites like Chocolate Chip, to hidden gems like Dutch Cocoa there is something for everyone. Plus, there is no better combination than cookies and milk, and our lineup of PICS milk makes for the perfect sidekick.
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If you’re looking to be more extravagant with your cookies this year, check out some of these awesome recipes.
Double Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream Sandwiches: PICS Cookies go great with PICS Vanilla Ice Cream and this delicious recipe highlights that pairing. Try it with strawberry ice cream for some Neapolitan flair!
Chocolate Chip, Oatmeal & Dried Cherry Cookies: These delicious Chocolate Chip, Oatmeal & Dried Cherry Cookies combine all the best things about cookies into one. Soft, warm, and delicous these will be a hit with the whole family.
Hot Chocolate Cookies: Chocolate cookies featuring marshmallows and peppermint candies, just a warm cup of hot chocolate in a cookie. These cookies were made for the holidays!
Classic Sugar Cookies: Sugar cookies are a must-have in your holiday collection. This classic recipe does it right.
Paradise Fruit Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies: Fruit is another excellent element to holiday cookies. These Cherry Chocolate Chip Cookies are fruity and tasty, adding a fun element to your lineup.
Check out the video recipe below for Pineapple and Cranberry-Orange Thumbprint Cookies. Yummy and perfect for the holidays!
We hope you have a wonderful time baking and enjoying holiday cookies this season! Stop by your local Price Chopper & Market 32 or visit us online for everything you need to get the job done right.
Wishing you a happy holiday season!