Domino's Pizza's domestic sales were falling last year. Then an organization called Dairy Management offered to help. They developed pizzas for Domino's that contained 40 percent more cheese, and then devised and paid for a $12-million marketing campaign.
But Dairy Management is not a private business -- it is a creation of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA helps helm a government anti-obesity program that discourages some of the very foods that Dairy Management is vigorously promoting.
The New York Times reports:
"... [I]n a series of confidential agreements approved by agriculture secretaries in both the Bush and Obama administrations, Dairy Management has worked with restaurants to expand their menus with cheese-laden products."
You're likely familiar with the "Got Milk" advertising campaign that encourages you to drink more milk for its array of health benefits. Perhaps you also saw the ads a few years back stating that eating more dairy could help you lose weight.
Both of these marketing campaigns were created by a nonprofit corporation called Dairy Management -- an organization that not only employs 162 highly skilled product developers and marketers but also is largely funded by the U.S. government.
As the New York Times reported, Dairy Management's $140-million annual budget comes in large part from a government-mandated fee on the dairy industry along with several million a year from the Agriculture Department.
But this government-funded organization is not simply interested in getting the word out about the potential health benefits of dairy … they primarily appear to be interested in doing whatever it takes to sell more dairy, including using up the surplus of whole milk and milk fat that exists since many Americans have switched to low-fat products.
Their solution? Team up with fast-food giants to sell more cheese.
The U.S. Government is Working Alongside Domino's, Pizza Hut and Other Fast-Food Giants
Dairy Management, which also includes the National Dairy Council, has been aggressively marketing cheese to restaurant chains in efforts to increase sales. Most recently, they took part in a $12-million marketing effort for Domino's latest pizza creation, the Wisconsin, which has six cheeses on the pie and two in the crust.
Dairy Management not only generated and tested new pizza concepts for Domino's, they've provided banners and special lighting at fast-food drive-throughs geared at promoting more cheese consumption.
They've also held development meetings with Pizza Hut and were instrumental in developing the chain's 2002 "Summer of Cheese" promotion that sold an additional 102 million pounds of cheese.
As the Times reported, Dairy Management has also been involved in the development of:
- Pizza Hut's Cheesy Bites pizza
- Wendy's dual Double Melt sandwich concept
- Burger King's Cheesy Angus Bacon cheeseburger and TenderCrisp chicken sandwich (both of which contained three slices of cheese plus a "cheesy sauce")
Dairy Management even works with grocery store chains to advise grocers how to arrange their dairy aisles for optimum sales.
What are Dairy Management employees getting in return for acting as champions for the dairy industry? At least in the executive arm, they're very well compensated … the organization's chief executive earned over $633,000 in 2008 while other top officials earned more than $300,000 each.
Advertising Campaigns Continued Despite Flimsy Research
The dairy industry has been heavily advertising the weight loss benefits of drinking more milk for years … but the study upon which this claim was based was not supported by additional research.
In fact, Dairy Management actually paid another researcher to look into the effects of dairy consumption on weight, but when her study failed to produce any such evidence they threatened to audit her work and then proceeded with their advertising campaign anyway.
Years went by before the Federal Trade Commission put an end to the campaign until additional research could be conducted. But not to worry … Dairy Management has other tricks up their sleeve to keep dairy consumption up.
As the New York Times reported:
"Meanwhile, Dairy Management, which allotted $12.4 million for nutrition research in 2008, has moved on to finance studies on promising opportunities, including the promotion of chocolate milk as a sports recovery drink and the use of cheese to entice children into eating healthy foods like string beans."
Do You See a Connection?
The U.S. government is clearly in cahoots with the commercial dairy industry … even going so far as to fund marketing campaigns for fast-food restaurants to increase sales.
Folks, this is likely one of the major reasons behind all the raids on the raw milk farms recently -- they are viewed as a threat to the commercial dairy industry.
The FDA and CDC have been aggressively raiding raw milk dairies in their efforts to crack down on raw milk production. This is done under the pretense of public health safety -- but the truth remains that not only is raw milk a health-promoting food, it is oftentimes safer and many times healthier than the pasteurized varieties both state and federal governments are rallying behind.
It is very apparent that the regulatory agencies have put blinders on to these statistics as they carry on with their ruthless crusade to ban raw milk and make it illegal for you to drink -- all while dedicating millions to boosting commercial dairy sales, even in the form of fast-food!
Because they are looking out for the interests of Big Dairy produced in factory farms.
Raw milk has been gaining popularity for years now. The conventional dairy industry, realizing this, has redoubled their efforts to make sure that raw milk sales are not able to grow, and certainly not able to become mainstream, where they could begin to threaten their very own livelihoods.
If raw dairy really caught on, you would think that the dairy industry would simply follow suit and begin producing raw products to meet the demand. But this would be virtually impossible.
A factory farm cannot compete with a small organic, free-range farm because their entire business depends on the milk being pasteurized. They simply cannot afford to reproduce the conditions required to produce safe raw milk, such as allowing all the cows to pasture and graze on grass, for starters.
So, since big business can't produce what consumers want, they're simply seeking to eliminate the raw milk market altogether. This is why Big Dairy's powerful lobbyists will stop at nothing to persuade government agencies to keep raw milk bans in full force -- and agencies like Dairy Management will continue their brash crusade to push pasteurized, processed cheeses and milk upon the American public.
If You Want Truly Healthy Dairy, Choose Raw
While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns that raw milk can carry disease-causing bacteria, what they completely overlook is the fact that these bacteria are the result of industrial farming practices that lead to diseased animals, which may then in turn produce contaminated milk.
They make no distinction whatsoever between disease-riddled factory farmed milk that commercial dairy operations produce and the milk from clean, healthy, grass-fed cows. The former MUST be pasteurized in order to be safe for consumption. The latter does not.
Further, not only does raw milk contain good bacteria that are essential for a healthy digestive system, raw milk also offers protection against disease-causing bacteria!
Mark McAfee, owner of Organic Pastures, the largest raw dairy in the United States, performed the following test: He inoculated pathogenic contaminants such as E. coli, Listeria and Salmonella into his raw milk, and into pasteurized milk.
In the raw milk, none of the pathogens survived because the natural bacteria were able to protect the milk. In the pasteurized milk, however -- in which the bacteria and enzymes have been destroyed -- the pathogens were able to take over.
To think that pasteurized milk is safer (even if you don't believe it's healthier) than raw milk from a healthy, grass-fed cow is simply not true.
Raw milk also contains vitamins, which are virtually eliminated by the pasteurization process of commercial milk. But it's the presence of beneficial bacteria that make raw milk such an outstanding food source to promote the growth of healthy bacteria in your intestine, which in turn has a significant, beneficial impact on your overall immune function.
Other health-promoting ingredients in raw milk include:
- Valuable enzymes that are destroyed during pasteurization. This includes phosphatase, an enzyme that aids and assists in the absorption of calcium in your bones, and lipase enzyme, which helps to hydrolyze and absorb fats.
- Natural butterfat, which is homogenized or removed in pasteurized milk. Without butterfat, it becomes very difficult for your body to absorb and utilize the vitamins and minerals in the water fraction of the milk. Butterfat is also your best source of preformed vitamin A, and contains re-arranged acids with strong anti-carcinogenic properties.
- Healthy unoxidized cholesterol
- Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which fights cancer and may help reduce your body fat.
- High omega-3 and low omega-6 ratios, which is the beneficial ratio between these two essential fats
So if you enjoy dairy products, do your health a favor and choose raw milk and raw milk cheese over the commercial varieties that are so heavily advertised. By joining the fight to make access to healthy raw milk a right for all Americans, you are not only standing up for raw milk; you're taking a stand to protect your freedom of food choice.