This issue begins what I hope will be a tradition for our magazine in the future. We highlight how some women in the dairy industry have made a direct impact on their dairy and how motivated women might be able to contribute more both to their dairy and to the dairy industry.
I believe that in addition to helping out with production-related responsibilities, women can and should also be contributing to the promotion of our industry. They can have the most impact when advocating the goodness of our dairy products to consumers.
For example, consider the following:
More than 80 percent of women seek out health and nutrition information for themselves and their families online, and there is a more than 9 in 10 chance that their search will begin with a search engine. Depending on the search terms they use to find information, their point of view regarding dairy consumption may be swayed considerably.
If one searches the Internet with the keyword “milk,” among the first results are two industry-sponsored webpages about milk with positive messages and two negative websites with antagonistic opinions about milk and dairy product consumption. Results are even more discouraging when using any negative keyword search term that consumers may have heard used in connection with our products, such as rBST or antibiotics.
Women can help dispel the misconceptions that have or may be circulated about the health or safety of dairy. Sharing their positive experiences related to dairy consumption and its production with those beyond their local peer group, even online, is just one way women can get more involved. For a list of milk sites with positive messages to refer your friends to, see my blog at http://progressivedairy.blogspot.com. PD