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Dairy leaders form innovation center

00:00AM Jul 15, 2008

An InnovationCenter for U.S. Dairy has been formed to accelerate industry innovation throughout the supply chain in an effort to increase sales in the competitive consumer marketplace.


Dairy producers, processors and manufacturers today announced "an unprecedented agreement to collaborate on pre-competitive initiatives” through the innovation center, which will be housed at the offices of Dairy Management Inc. (DMI) in Rosemont, Ill.


Established through DMI, the nonprofit organization that manages the producer checkoff program, the center "is the first of its kind to bring together milk producers, processors and manufacturers under one organization to collaborate on major issues affecting the dairy industry,” a DMI news release said today.


Through the InnovationCenter, the entire industry will work together to address six priorities:

·         Sustainability

·         Health and Wellness

·         Product Development, Information and Communications

·         Regulatory Issues (excludes pricing)

·         Consumer Confidence

·         Globalization


The priorities were established by the center's board of directors, which consists of executives and chairs from the nation's leading producer, processor and manufacturing organizations.  


"Our future success as an industry depends on our ability to be more responsive to consumer needs and more competitive in the consumer marketplace,” said Larry Jensen, chair of the Innovation Center Board of Directors and president of Denver-based Leprino Foods Company. "By working together, we will develop new approaches to ensure that we meet consumer demand for the products they want, when and where they want them.”