EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. — September is #HungerActionMonth, a time dedicated to spreading awareness and taking actions to end hunger in America. In the fight against food insecurity, Prairie Farms is excited to announce a unique collaboration between several organizations including: BiggerTable, Chicagoland Food & Beverage Network, and Feeding America, that will provide 450,000 servings of nutritious, protein-packed, berry smoothie packets for distribution by regional foodbanks in Northern Illinois, Chicago, and St. Louis.
The smoothie packets were unveiled during a Hunger Action Month Symposium at the St. Louis Area Foodbank. In St. Louis, distribution of 133,000 packets will be part of a “back to school” push to provide nutrition for students in underserved communities. Approximately 34 schools around the area will receive distributions for their individual school banks.
Each smoothie packet is made from a mix of dry milk powder and other ingredients including whey protein concentrate that results in a whopping 15 grams of protein and 5 grams of soluble fiber from a single packet. The only other requirement is the addition of water or milk to make a delicious smoothie that can also be combined with bananas or other fruit for an even tastier and nutritious start to the day.
Prairie Farms made a large donation of non-fat dry milk powder which is a key ingredient used to make the packets. Bigger Table manufactures and delivers the product as well as connects the dots between all entities. The project is an opportunity to build awareness for how organizations working together can play a key role in the fight against hunger during September Hunger Action Month.
“Our dairy farmers are proud to share the goodness of milk to help in the fight against hunger,” says Derek England, Northeast Missouri Dairy Farmer and Prairie Farms Board Member. “No child should ever have to go to school hungry, so I’m happy we can provide a key ingredient for this collaboration.”
“We know that a good day starts with a great breakfast, and we want to make sure everyone has the ability to perform at their best,” said Alan Reed, Executive Director at Bigger Table. “By bringing together industry leaders like Prairie Farms, we can deliver innovative solutions to fight food insecurity across the Midwest and support the important work of the St. Louis Area Food Bank.”
“We are grateful to our partners at Prairie Farms, Bigger Table and Chicagoland Foods for their investment in alleviating regional hunger,” said St. Louis Area Foodbank President and CEO, Meredith Knopp. “This collaboration is a testament to what is possible when organizations combine their efforts and align their missions for the betterment of all.”
Prairie Farms Dairy, Inc. is one of the largest and most successful dairy cooperatives operating in the Midwest and the South. Elements of the cooperative include more than 600 farm families, 7,000 associates, 50 manufacturing plants, over 100 distribution facilities, and annual sales of over $4.2 billion. Prairie Farms is a nationally recognized leader in the dairy industry known for setting the standard for milk flavor innovations and producing award-winning milk, cheese, and cultured dairy products. With headquarters in Edwardsville, Ill., the Prairie Farms distribution footprint covers over 30 percent of the United States; products are available in grocery chains, mass merchandiser stores, club stores, convenience stores, dollar stores, drug stores, schools, foodservice outlets, and warehouse distribution centers. For more information about Prairie Farms Dairy, visit www.prairiefarms.com.
— Prairie Farms Dairy