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November 10, 2010


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So Good

Great job Craig. In my mind you absolutely "out-reported" not only the NY Times, but lots and lots of other bloggers out there who didn't take the time to filter the information one more level and see if everything rang true.

Guy Hand

I applaud Craig for his attention to detail regarding the funding of Dairy Management's push to put more cheese on chain restaurant pizzas. But, for me at least, the more compelling facet of the New York Times article was its glimpse into the behind-the-scenes influence industrial food organizations have over the food we eat.

Whether publicly or privately funded, a food product created essentially by a dairy group trying to find an outlet for surplus processed cheese is a story worth telling.


I agree with you Guy that there is actually an important story to tell and much of the article raises some important issues that need a hearing. But I think by not being more clear about the financial aspect of the story it distracted from the real issues, which are further up the food system stream where food policies create cheap surpluses that then need to find a market. It's really a policy debate, and Dairy Marketing, by nature of US law is not allowed to engage in policy. They are the sales reps for a broken food system. I don't think it's fair to blame the sales team for the product or the marketplace. To the Times' credit they raised up the issue in a way that really got people's attention. Food policy doesn't usually make it to the top line of the front page. I was surprised that there isn't even a wiki page for the 1983 Dairy Act, given how much that law effects our daily lives. Michael Moss told the story in a way that got people's attention which is to his credit.


Good job! No one thinks a thing of it if Budweiser or Coke televise cute commercials featuring horses and polar bears to sell more soda and beer, but let dairy farmers fund initiatives to sell their product and suddenly they are suspect. As a farmer, who pays, whether I like it or not, as it is mandated by law, into the Dairy Check Off, I applaud your efforts to dig a little deeper into this sensationalized story.

Leon Corse, The Corse Farm Dairy

Good article! As a relatively small (organic) dairy farmer in VT there is no way I alone or even I and the other dairy farmers in VT can compete with the advertising dollars spent by the huge companies that market other products such as beer and soda. The dairy check off allows dairy farmers all across the US to pool their contributions so we at least have a fighting chance to compete with the huge companies that market much of the US food supply.

Cari Uang



Thank you so much for your "reporting" As an organic dairy farmer I agree with Leon that we (dairy farmers) decide what the CheckOff is going to be, how it is spent and use that money for education, research and "gasp" promotion of the dairy industry. Your connection to people will make you a better reporter any day than someone out there to get a sensational headline. Thank you for supporting farmers all of sectors and sizes. Good luck with your book!

Glen at High Potassium Foods

"Evil conspirators" is a frequent story to sell more newspapers. Although most internet bloggers will take the easy way and just repeat a story, the real value of the internet is citizen reporters like yourself who actually look into a story. As someone who uses USDA produced information for my blog about high potassium foods, I am glad to see someone look beyond the sensational.

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