Here’s the scoop, I’ve recently accepted a position as director of marketing for Central Dairy. This means two things:
1. I embark on a new chapter in my life
2. My ice cream consumption just sky rocketed. Mmmmmm Peppermint Stick!
But Central Dairy isn’t just about ice cream (I know, right?!). In fact, ice cream is a very small percentage of what Central Dairy produces! So, what is the cheese to their smile? Milk. Central Dairy milk brings in the highest percentage of income for this “home grown” business...
Established in Columbia, Missouri in 1920 by Dot Sappington, the Jefferson City location did not open until 1932. Initially, products from Columbia were brought to Jefferson City for resale, but Mr. Sappington built a new dairy building (610 Madison Street) and installed the now famous ice cream counter in the front of the dairy.
In 2007 Central Dairy partnered with Prairie Farms. With over 800 dairy farms, Prairie Farms manufactures and markets a full line of dairy food products from it’s own seventeen plants, along with thirteen others through subsidiary companies and joint ventures throughout the Midwest.
Recently I was fortunate enough to take a tour of the dairy, and along the way my dairy knowledge was “milked”for all it’s worth.
All Central Dairy products are made with real cow’s milk. In the line of milk alone, Central Dairy offers whole milk, 2% milk, 1% milk, skim milk, chocolate milk and strawberry milk (both chocolate and strawberry are 1%). In today’s “health conscious” world, many people believe that cow’s milk is not healthy or can even contribute to weight gain. Not true. Cow’s milk is an excellent source of protein, calcium, and vitamins D and K. There are also a total of nine essential vitamins in cow’s milk. And in recent studies, milk has been found to actually aid in weight loss efforts! Those are ALL “dairy” good things! (Get it? I used “dairy” rather than “very!” It’s no wonder they offered me a job!)
Speaking of milk, did you know that only one in ten school-aged children meet their daily calcium requirements? This doesn’t come as a surprise, with increasing numbers of children drinking sodas, sports drinks, fruit-flavored beverages and other sweetened beverages that often replace milk. It is recommended that children consume between 1,000 - 1,300 mg of calcium per day, depending on their age, which corresponds to 2-1/2 to 3 cups of milk or milk products every day. A recent study found that children who consume flavored milk (chocolate or strawberry) are more likely to reach their daily recommended intake of calcium and less likely to consume low-nutrient beverages, such as soda and sugary juice drinks. I’m feeding you this information, because currently there is a “war” within our education system on whether or not chocolate milk should be offered to students during the lunch period.
Okay, okay....enough with the “milk maid!” Although I could go on and on about the benefits of milk (really all dairy products), I promise I have a story here....
Upon accepting my position with Central Dairy, my family and I were sitting at the dinner table (I’m certain we were eating something with lots of cheese, butter, and maybe even a good helping of Central Dairy Chip-n-Dip!) when I made the announcement, “I’m going to work for Central Dairy! I will be the director of marketing and I begin my new job on October 1st!”Each of my three boys had a different reaction, all indicative of his unique personality:
Hayden, my 16-year-old who is “too cool for school” replied,“Awesome! Free ice cream!”
Jackson, my 12-year-old, sweet and sensitive son patted my back and said, “I’m so proud of you mom! Congratulations!”
And then my youngest, 11-year-old Benjamin, who quite frankly has way too much of his momma’s personality, immediately asked, “Oh! Are you going to be the new ‘cow’ on the commercials?”
I’m pretty sure my face displayed exactly the fury I was feeling....”Did my son just ask me if I’m a cow?” Benjamin quickly followed up with, “I meant the voice of the cow mom....the voice.” But it was his next“revelation” that pulled him from the cow pie he was quickly sinking into...
“There’s a Fairy in the Dairy!”
Oh, the memory! How could I have forgotten?! Of course! I was absolutely destined to work for Central Dairy!
When Benjamin was two years old he received a book entitled,A Fairy in a Dairy, and it was his most favorite book! The sleepy town of Buttermilk Hollow was blessed with a fairy godmother, and the once failing dairy town soon began to flourish when dairy products of all kinds began popping up in the most unusual places! Benjamin had that book memorized! Pretty soon the “fairy” became “real” in our home. I had Benjamin convinced that we had our own personal “dairy fairy” and that was how our milk was delivered in the metal milk box that sits out on our front porch! Cute, huh?
Look, I’m not really sure how I have ended up working for a dairy. I’m a city gal, through and through. The closest I’ve ever come to farming is mismanaging an ant farm when I was nine years old. But it’s not like I’m trading my stilettos for a pair of rubber boots, although I was forced to wear a hair net during the tour (seriously, I’m going to need something a little more “blinged” out if I have to wear a hair net every single time)!
My role is to market the products that we produce right here in the capitol city, and since I love me some milk, cheese, and ice cream, that should be a "piece of cake" (with Central Dairy Vanilla Ice Cream on top)! On the“udder” hand, having access to all the Peppermint Stick Ice Cream I can consume...Holy Cow!