ENTERTAINING AND INFORMATIVE: IS THIS THE WAY TO GO?

It seems that those milk producers are always on the cutting edge.  Here in America, we all realize the popularity of the “Got Milk” ads.  They are almost collectables!  But in Europe, there’s a new breed of dairy farmer and they are hitting television screens for the first time in their new video for Yeo Valley.

http://www.youtube.com/v/qLySx6wSSmo?fs=1&hl=en_US

Intro

The sun is up, the milk is chilled, it’s gonna be a good one, yo yo

Farmer 1
Yo I’m rolling in my Massey on a summer’s day
Chugging cold milk while I’m bailing hay
Yeo Valley’s approach is common sense
Harmony in nature takes precedence
My ride’s my pride
That’s why you’ll never see it dirty
And I love it here man
That’s why I’m never leaving early
I’m so girt
In my cap and my shirt
I’m representing for west
So hard that it hurts

Farmer 2
We make this look easy
Cause we’re proper modern with this farming believe me
Wind turbines they’re shining baby
And solar farming no buts no maybe’s
Ye, when we’re down with the soil association
And we do lots of what, conservation
Sustain, maintain it ain’t no thing
We set the bar
Real leaders by far

Chorus
Yeo Valley Yeo Valley
We change the game, it will never be the same
Yeo Valley Yeo Valley
Big up your chest and represent the West

Farmer 3
This isn’t fictional farming
Its realer than real
You wont find milk maidens
That’s no longer the deal
In my wax coat and boots
I’m proper farmer Giles
Now look
You urban folk done stole our styles
I’m not a city dweller,
Me I like to keep it country
The air is clean and
All those cars will make me jumpy
It’s different strokes
For different folk, my man
Just enjoy the results
Of what we do on the land

Farmer 4
Check out Daisy she’s a proper cow
A pedigree Friesian with know how
Her and her girls they have there own name
We treat them good
They give us the cream

Chorus
Yeo Valley Yeo Valley
We change the game, it will never be the same
Yeo Valley Yeo Valley
Big up your chest and represent the West
Big up your chest…
Represent the West…

Interesting that these European farmers are addressing exactly the same questions we’re trying to address.  They mention that they are sustainable and environmentally conscious … and that they treat their cattle well.  Also, I love the line “Different strokes for different folks, Just enjoy the results of what we do on the land.”

Are Illinois farmers ready to get out there and do something like this that is entertaining and informative?  Does this push the bar too far or just far enough?  Is this the way to get consumer attention and give them permission to get farmers farm?

What are your thoughts?

Lindsay Mitchell
ICGA/ICMB Marketing Director

A QUICK VISIT TO THE WORLD DAIRY EXPO …

The World Dairy Expo was held September 28 through October 2 in Madison, Wisconsin. As a dairy enthusiast myself, attending Expo is always a great treat. It is the meeting place for over 65,000 people from around the world for this five day event. It is much more than the famed dairy cattle shows and sales, but includes seminars, collegiate and 4-H judging contests and exhibits of all kinds. As a stop for many on the “tanbark trail,” the best cattle from the United States and Canada are exhibited at this amazing exposition. While some are exhibiting, thousands come to watch the show, view the modern equipment exhibits, learn about the latest in feed and nutrition, check out colleges, discover new advances in genetics, and to just mingle with members of the dairy and agriculture industry from around the globe.
A major attraction is the trade show. It includes over 750 exhibitors from within the United States and internationally as well. A trip through the whole trade show, exhibition hall, or coliseum is well over a full day’s event. Freebies and lots of information can be gained on a treck through the trade show buildings. One of these exhibits was the Illinois Livestock Development Group. The Illinois Corn Marketing Board works with this development group to bring cattle to Illinois. Illinois produces lots of corn, and livestock is the number one market for number two yellow corn. It is a win win situation, strong corn state and strong dairy state. There is a strong connection between the gold crop and the big black and whites…or any dairy cow for that matter.
In addition to the trade show and exhibition hall, one can enjoy a variety of exhibits outside and some delicious food as well. Dairy products are presented at their finest at such an event as this. Whether it is the traditional grilled cheese, a milkshake, or some awesome cheese curds, one will not be disappointed. If the cattle are more of interest, a trip through the numerous cattle barns or a venture through the sale tent will be sure to satisfy.

The World Dairy Expo was a great experience and did not disappoint. From watching the shows, to sitting next to many international guest and hearing their opinions of the shows, to enjoying my grilled cheese sandwiches and milk, to talking about future plans with exhibitors present, to purchasing a jacket, expo met my expectations. Though it is a little too late to watch the shows live online, all the results can be found on the website. www.worlddairyexpo.com. Also, the site includes a lot of information about this year’s expo besides show results. Whether you are a diary enthusiast or not, the World Dairy Expo is a great event to experience, so I would suggest that you work that into your plans for next fall!

Amy Schaufelberger
University of Illinois student and Illinois farm girl