DUTCHESS CO., N.Y. — Members of the Dutchess County 4-H Dairy Discovery program had no hesitation when asked if they would like to participate. The challenge: to develop their perfect macaroni & cheese recipe, create marketing materials for their product, and learn more about the dairy product industry in their community. Run by NYS Ag in the Classroom, with funding provided through the NY Dairy Promotion Order, this competition was a not-to-be-missed opportunity to support our dairy farmers while learning science and business skills and having fun.
Step One was to design an original recipe including a title, ingredient list with measurements, step-by-step procedures for making the recipe, and a photo of the finished dish. Next, the youth had to collaborate to come up with an effective marketing slogan and put it into a format where it could be shared. Finally, they had to be sure to submit their entry by the deadline.
According to NYS AITC, over 170 classrooms registered for the Mac and Cheese Challenge! “Our staff and judges thoroughly enjoyed reviewing the 246 projects submitted by students ranging in grade levels Pre-K through 12th”. Dutchess County 4-H’ers Aliyah, Andrew and Lily’s earned FIRST place in the Intermediate School Division with their “Mac ’N’ Cheese Scoopers”, while Travis’ “Nacho’Yo’Mama’s Mac ’N’ Cheese” earned SECOND place in the same division! And while Milla, Vivien & Mackenzie’s dish was not announced to be in the top 3 of a very competitive High School division, it was an excellent dish that we all enjoyed. Together, this means the group collectively will receive one cheese making kit AND $350 in prize money to be spent by the club.
–Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County