Source: Dairy Management, Inc.
Marking another step in the dairy industry's efforts to accelerate innovation and increase future demand for dairy, Dairy Management Inc.™ (DMI) and the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy announced today the formation of the Dairy Research Institute™, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that will strengthen the dairy industry’s access to and investment in the technical research needed to drive demand for dairy products and ingredients, globally.
The institute brings together leadership from across the dairy industry, scientific community, academics, government and other organizations to plan and fund leading-edge dairy research in three key priority areas: nutrition science, product development and sustainability.
“The Dairy Research Institute fulfills a vital need to align our industry’s research efforts to address consumer needs and increase sales,” said Kevin Ponticelli, chair of the Dairy Research Institute Board of Directors and executive vice president of DMI, which manages the national dairy checkoff program on behalf of the nation’s dairy farmers. “In an increasingly competitive marketplace, it is critical that we work together as an industry to increase and manage the industry’s investment in research.”
The launch of the Dairy Research Institute builds upon the unprecedented efforts of dairy producers, processors and manufacturers to work together pre-competitively through the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, formed in 2008. The Dairy Research Institute is affiliated with the Innovation Center, and provides a forum for industry to identify major research needs to support dairy industry innovation, and grow dairy sales.
“The U.S. dairy industry has a long history of using science-based research to provide the knowledge, guidance and tools needed to foster innovation and promote the nutrient-rich value of dairy and the industry’s long-standing commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Greg Miller, executive vice president, research, regulatory and scientific affairs for DMI and president of the Dairy Research Institute.
“Through partnerships and a commitment to sound science, we will support the importance of dairy in the diet and the sustainability of the products and ingredients we produce," Miller said. "The dairy industry needs to remain at the forefront of research to meet the challenges of today and those yet to come.”
The Dairy Research Institute builds on the legacy of nutrition and product research conducted by the National Dairy Council since 1915, and will leverage their expertise, as well as other partners, including five dairy research centers at major universities and government agencies, such as the USDA’s Agricultural Research Services and the Department of Defense’s Natick Soldier Center, and other leading scientific, health and nongovernment organizations.
The Dairy Research Institute also will coordinate with the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA), the National Milk Producers Federation, the Milk Processor Education Program, DMI, U.S. Dairy Export Council, Global Dairy Platform, and other industry and non-industry partners.
“The U.S. dairy industry understands the important role research plays in giving consumers the nutritious dairy products they want — when, where and how they want them,” said Connie Tipton, president and chief executive officer, International Dairy Foods Association. “By working together to prioritize, support and share research with stakeholders, we will be better positioned to meet consumer needs, and protect and promote dairy in the marketplace.”