Photo courtesy of Mississippi Food Network
A new partnership between the Mississippi Food Network (MNF) and the Dairy Alliance will aid food banks across the state.
With 430 agencies statewide, the Mississippi Food Network acts as the food bank for the state. While working to provide food for those facing hunger and food insecurity, a survey issued by the network found that milk was one of the most requested items in food banks.
Marilyn Blackledge, the Communications Director for the MFN, explained that due to storage issues and the inability to keep milk fresh, it was difficult to keep it on the shelves. That’s where a partnership with the Dairy Alliance comes into play.
The Dairy Alliance has presented the MFN with a $35,000 grant that will be used for coolers, thermal blankets and culinary demonstration tables to ensure that food banks can store and use the milk properly. The MFN is also working with dairy farmers across the state to build up their inventory as part of the ‘Milk to My Plate’ initiative.
“We started working with local dairy farmers to increase access to dairy for food banks. Mississippi’s dairy farmers feel very strongly in helping to make sure that children have a nutritious product like milk,” Blackledge said.
The MFN has a presence in 56 Mississippi counties.