The American Dairy Coalition commends Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) on her efforts to reintroduce ”The Defending Against Imitations and Replacements of Yogurt, milk and cheese to Promote Regular Intake of Dairy Every Day Act” — or DAIRY PRIDE Act as it is known.
This bill will prohibit the use of terms such as “milk,” “yogurt” or “cheese” from use on labels to describe products made from nuts, seeds, plants or other non-dairy alternative products. Americans have associated these dairy terms with quality, nutritious and consistent products for years — non-milk alternative products are not equivocal in nutritional value or consistency, making it imperative the FDA stop allowing the confusion to continue.
The DAIRY PRIDE Act would not only require the FDA to enforce the labeling restriction nationwide, but provide enforcement to ensure long term accountability to the rule. Milk provides 30 percent of the daily recommended calcium intake for most of the U.S. population and is the primary source for three of the four under-consumed nutrients of public health concern as identified by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Despite this, the consumption of milk is on the decline and the sale of plant-based alternative products are up 61 percent over the past 5 years — a trend that is expected to continue to increase by up to 5 percent each year. Americans deserve clarity and truthfulness when choosing what to feed their families. Fortified nut juice is not milk.
The American Dairy Coalition encourages members of the dairy industry to reach out to their federal representatives to support this important bill. The future of the dairy industry is in jeopardy as more and more dairy farms go out of business, taking with them jobs and revenue that support rural economies. When the non-dairy alternative beverage trend falls out of favor, it is vital the American dairy industry is still intact to provide the wholesome and reliable dairy products, which have nourished our nation’s families for generations.