Category Archives: news and events

Mother’s Day Brunch Idea: Better with Berry Butter

Poppyseed Muffins with Strawberry Butter

Mother’s Day is on Sunday, May 14, but you knew that already, right? Of course you did, because mom is special … plus you know what’s good for you! Short changing mom on her special day is just not an option.

We’re here to help. If you’re planning a brunch, here’s an easy, unique and delicious recipe you can do to sweeten up the usual fare. This simple strawberry butter with poppyseed muffins adds color and flavor to the table. Plus it’s something the whole family will enjoy.

Follow this simple recipe, and enjoy! And don’t worry, you can take all of the credit – we won’t say a word.

Yield: 12 muffins

indulgent-recipe

 


Prep time: 15 min   Cook time: 15 min

INGREDIENTS

For the Strawberry Butter:

2/3 cup chopped strawberries
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt

For the Almond Poppyseed Muffins:

1 1/3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
3/4 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon poppy seeds

INSTRUCTIONS

For the Strawberry Butter:

Sprinkle strawberries with sugar and mix well. Let stand at room temperatures 30 minutes to 1 hour. Drain off liquid and discard or reserve for another use.

Add drained strawberries, butter and salt to bowl of electric mixer. Mix until well incorporated and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.

For the Almond Poppyseed Muffins:

Preheat oven to 450°F and butter muffin tin.

In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt.

In large bowl, cream together butter, sugar, eggs, almond extract and sour cream. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until combined. Stir in poppy seeds.

Fill muffin tins about 2/3 full each with muffin batter. Bake for 12-16 minutes until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Allow to cool on wire rack. Serve warm with strawberry butter.

Strawberry Butter with Almond Poppyseed Muffins
Courtesy of the American Butter Institute and Crème de la Crumb

 

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Eight Questions for an Oregon Dairy Mom

Back to School: Literacy Project Helps Bridge Gap

Mary Swearingen and class

by Mary Swearingen, dairy nutrition consultant and Oregon Dairy Women member

Twenty years ago, I was in the third grade when my cousin (a county dairy princess at the time) visited my class to give a presentation — it was the same year milk became the Official State Beverage of Oregon. Twenty years later, I returned to read to three first grade classes at Mary Eyre Elementary School in Salem on April 12.

Mary Swearingen AITC Lit Project

The opportunity was made possible by a literacy project organized by Oregon Agriculture in the Classroom. In all, 72 students listened attentively and discussed where our dairy products come from, how dairy is part of a well-balanced diet, and everything our farmers do to care for their cows.

I work as a nutrition consultant for a feed company in Harrisburg, and because the literacy project activity focused on nutrition, I brought feed samples with me and explained that I help farmers create balanced diets for their cows.  Students got to see and smell alfalfa hay, flaked corn and almond hulls.

We talked about how cows are amazing at recycling byproducts, or leftovers from food production. I feel that it was important to volunteer for this year’s literacy project because the book answered the ever so popular question: does chocolate milk come from brown cows? A common misnomer among consumers, the book illustrates that all breeds of dairy cows produce white milk.

Mary Swearingen and cowIt was a really great opportunity to help bridge the gap between the farm and the classroom. After all, our milk and dairy products don’t just come from the dairy case. As a treat for all the students (and teachers) I brought 75 pints of chocolate milk with me, and the students all loved it.

At the end of the presentation, I opened the floor to questions and by far my favorite was from a concerned student asking, “in the middle of the day when the farmer is trying to sleep, doesn’t he get tired of hearing those cows moo all the time?”

I grew up as a city kid, but spent most of my school breaks working on my aunt and uncle’s dairy in Stayton picking berries and feeding calves. It didn’t take long to develop a passion and love of the farm, to see the hard work and effort it takes to dairy was quite literally a life-changing experience.

I went from one extreme to the other, wanting to be a teacher to Veterinary Medicine, and ultimately to animal nutrition.  I got involved in 4-H Livestock my freshman year of high school and participated in the Oregon Dairy Women’s Dairy Princess Program. These experiences have led me to see the importance of educating our youth and advocating for our farmers and ranchers.


The Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council proudly sponsors Oregon Agriculture in the Classroom’s 2017 Literacy Project. More information is available at oregonaitc.org/programs/literacy-project.

School Culinary Trainings Spice Up the Menu

Culinary Trainings with Garrett Berdan

Sponsored by the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council and the Oregon Department of Education, Child Nutrition Programs, a new series of five popular culinary training events are underway to help improve school cafeteria menus for Oregon students.

For the past seven years, Chef Garrett Berdan, RDN, has been coaching child nutrition program professionals at regional trainings on cooking innovative, healthy meals using nutrient-rich, local foods. At the training events, participants prepare and taste test 15 actual recipes they can bring back to their students.

The preparation of healthy meals for students emphasizes nutrient-rich foods, because studies show that well-nourished kids perform better at school. Participants practice menu planning, weights and measures, knife skills and other culinary techniques.

This year’s series includes stops in Klamath Falls, Ontario, Lincoln City, Central Point and Aurora, Oregon. Trainings were held last year in Albany, Hermiston, McMinnville, Central Point, Salem and La Grande. Schools and childcare programs in each region are invited to participate in the two day training free of charge.

“Using quick, tasty and healthy Food Hero recipes and a little creativity, schools can really spice up their menus without breaking the bank,” said Crista Hawkins, RDN, LD, Director of School Programs for the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council. “We’ve invited a lot of guests to come and try the good food at these events, and they’re consistently impressed.”

As part of an ongoing commitment to youth wellness and education, Oregon’s 228 dairy farm families and 29 dairy processors are involved with schools across the state, supporting programs such as this training.

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Ontario Culinary Workshop FUTP60 Yogurt Station
Ontario Argus Observer, April 9

Nutritious cooking: Child nutrition programs get healthy refresher course
Herald and News, March 21

Cooking Up New and Nutritious Recipes for School Kids

Southeast Asia Dairy Trade Mission Updates

Asia's buying power

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam   |   Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia   |   Singapore

April 22 – May 4, 2017

The following are updates provided by Pete Kent, Executive Director of the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council, from the 2017 Dairy Trade Mission to Southeast Asia.


MAY 11, 2017

Following on the successful trade mission to Southeast Asia, Pete Kent sat down with Mateusz Perkowski, of the Capital Press to provide a recap and discuss next steps for delivering dairy products from the western United States to new markets in Vietnam, Singapore and Malaysia.

Oregon dairy industry builds trade ‘pipeline’ to SE Asia
Capital Press, May 11


MAY 3, 2017

As we come toward the conclusion of our Southeast Asia Dairy Trade Mission, we discover artisan cheeses and ice cream from the western states are showing up in Malaysia and Singapore high-end grocery stores. These are but two dairy products currently being shipped to the region by U.S. dairy companies.

Southeast-Asia-grocery-store-cheese-room

Britton Welsh, cheese maker for Utah’s Beehive Cheese, stands with Jason’s Grocers cheese manager, in front of a selection of cheeses from Beehive Cheese.

As we’ve seen in hotels, restaurants and grocers, natural cheeses are increasingly being consumed by a growing middle class. Even whole cheese rooms are now present in the higher end stores, which feature artisan and specialty cheeses worldwide. Still, the selection of U.S. cheeses is sparse.

On our 14-day mission, which we complete this week, we’ve visited with importers, store managers, U.S. Dairy Export Council representatives, and agricultural trade officers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. All have pointed to growing opportunities for U.S. dairy products in several product categories for the region.

Upon our return, we will be working as a region to further plan our next steps in developing a collaborative effort to help open the channels to new markets, especially for our western region’s small to medium sized companies and dairy cooperatives.


APRIL 28, 2017

In day seven of our SE Asia Dairy Trade Mission, we’re struck by the number of construction cranes that line the skyline as we complete our first day in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

We arrived here in a very early morning, after completing four days in Vietnam, including the 2017 Food and Hotel Vietnam trade show. There we were able to sample our cheeses, in addition to viewing other dairy innovations from worldwide.

Trade shows such as Food and Hotel Vietnam allow for key connections, sample testing, and a look at other dairy innovations produced worldwide including cheese candy, smoked butter, and specially formulated barista milk.

In Malaysia, the building growth is just one indication of the economic growth in this ASEAN nation, where we are seeking new export opportunities for western dairy states.

Today in between drenching rain storms, we visited with importing food distributors, who service the growing segment of high-end restaurants, hotels, and quick serve restaurants.

Our goal is to further the connections we’ve made in the past year, with particular emphasis on artisan cheeses and dairy ingredients. While U.S. dairy is still relatively absent in these emerging nations, the desire for U.S. dairy products is increasingly becoming stronger.


APRIL 26, 2017

A growing population, increasing middle class, and one of the world’s faster growing economies make Vietnam a key country of interest for potential growth in U.S. dairy exports.

The country is the first stop of a Southeast Asia dairy trade mission, now underway. Attended by 14 representatives of dairy processors, supporting agencies and organizations from Oregon, Washington, Utah and Arizona, the mission begins with Food and Hotel Vietnam. The three-day trade event includes the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) exhibit of which we are a part.

From here, we’ll travel to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and then on to Singapore to complete our 14-day trade mission. With more than 30 meetings, events, and activities scheduled, our goal is to help expand markets for U.S. dairy in collaboration with USDEC, with an emphasis on artisan cheese and dairy ingredients.


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Exploring New Markets for Dairy Exports

Oregon dairy trade mission 2017

As you read this sentence, a delegation of 14 dairy industry and trade representatives from Oregon, Washington, Utah and Arizona are exploring new business opportunities in Southeast Asia. The Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council organized this dairy trade mission to include Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore.

The purpose of this mission is to explore new markets and connections for exports of dairy products from Oregon and the other participating states. A full slate of meetings and visits are scheduled with government, retail, factory, trade and logistics contacts, fittingly returning during World Trade Month on May 4.

On a global scale, overall demand for dairy products continues to grow. For example, in the cheese category alone there is a projected 25% volume growth of all global cheese trade by 2021, equivalent to an additional 500,000 metric tons. Most of the projected potential lies with developing countries where growing populations, rising incomes, expansion of the middle class and greater desire for western diets is driving demand.

Dairy is Oregon’s fourth largest agricultural commodity in Oregon by value with a total economic impact of more than a billion dollars. Exports of Oregon dairy products totaled $93,662,000 in 2014. Approximately 80 percent of the dairy products made in Oregon are produced for other domestic or international markets. Previous trade missions have opened doors in South Korea and Japan.

Pete Kent, Executive Director of the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council, will be sharing insights from the trade mission on this website and through our social media accounts along the way.

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Every Day is Earth Day for Dairy Farmers

earth_dairy_farmers_care

Earth Day may be celebrated each year in late April, but for Oregon dairy farmers every day is Earth Day on the farm.

Most dairy farm families live and work where they farm. Each day they walk out their back door to take good care of their animals and land. It’s a responsibility they take seriously, and they’re proud of the work they do to bring nutritious food to our tables in a sustainable way.

Dairy farming has become advanced and innovative in Oregon and across the country.  For example, between 1944 and 2007, the dairy industry used 90 percent less land, consumed 63 percent less water and emitted 63 percent less carbon while quadrupling the milk supply. Today, the dairy industry is responsible for less than two percent of greenhouse gas emissions.

The dairy industry is also great at recycling. Almost 20 percent of everything dairy cows eat is an agricultural byproduct inedible by humans. One major byproduct of milking cows – manure – is a valuable resource. Farmers use manure as a natural fertilizer on their crops, and some farms use methane digesters to recycle manure into clean, renewable electricity. Several farms generate solar power, and reusing water many times over is standard practice on today’s dairy farms.

Sustainable diets with low environmental impacts contribute to food and nutrition security and to a healthy life for present and future generations. Dairy provides substantial nutritional value in a single affordable package, has continually reduced its environmental footprint, and has committed to additional improvements industry-wide.

So whether you’re enjoying dairy foods on Earth Day or any day, you can feel good about how they’re made.

Seven Things You Should Know About Large Dairies

Larger Farms

Oregon has 228 family dairy farms, ranging from fewer than 100 cows being milked each day to more than 30,000. Regardless of the size of the farm, there are certain values, standards and management practices that every Oregon dairy farmer has in common.

Farm size does not determine farm quality. It’s a misperception that larger farms are somehow not as good for the animals, environment, employees or community. Here are seven things you should know about large dairy farms:

environment1 They are good stewards of the air, land and water. No matter how many cows they milk, farmers care for their land and their natural resources. It’s important to them to do the right thing and be good neighbors and members of the community and they take the initiative to do so by voluntarily implementing best management practices on their own.
farmers work with nutritionists and veterinarians2 Their cows are well cared for. Dairy farmers’ commitment to providing high quality milk begins with taking good care of their cows. On farms of all sizes, farmers work with nutritionists and veterinarians to provide a nutritious diet, great medical care and healthy living conditions. Cow comfort is key to a farmer’s livelihood.
State and federal standards3 They follow the rules. Large farms must meet state and federal standards, and they face the same kinds of regulations and oversight as smaller farms. They have regular inspections of their operations to check for and ensure compliance. Dairy is one of the most highly regulated industries in the U.S.
Sustainability and efficiency4 Sustainability is not just a buzzword. Farmers are innovating and working toward a sustainable future. They are increasingly working smarter with robotics, automated feeders, methane digesters, precision agriculture, solar panels and beneficial use of waste to increase efficiency and reduce impacts. Large scale farms allow optimal use of scarce resources such as water, energy and land.
Milk testing5 Food safety starts at the farm. Milk is one of the most tested and regulated food products, and all farmers employ rigorous standards, practices and procedures to ensure that it is kept pure, cold and safe. Farmers are held personally responsible for the quality of the milk that comes from their farms.
Josi family6 Oregon dairies are family owned. Even the largest Oregon dairies are family owned. Dairy farmers take great pride in their work, and they want to continue working on the same land so they can continue providing the nutritious food that we enjoy and depend on. It is their legacy.
Milk cheese yogurt7They coexist alongside smaller farms. Large farms support smaller farmers and vice versa. Not all farms produce milk for the same processors or the same dairy products or the same consumer markets. There is room for farms of all sizes and types – organic and conventional – to thrive.

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Meet the Miramontes Family: First Generation Oregon Dairy Farmers

In agriculture, farms are typically passed down from generation to generation – and dairy farms are no exception. These days, it’s unusual for a dairy farmer to start their own dairy. But that’s just what Jesús and Emma Miramontes did eight years ago.

Jesús at Miramontes DairyAfter spending 27 years caring for other dairy farmers’ cows, Jesús looked at his wife Emma one day and said, “Why don’t we just get our own cows and go for it?” So they did. They started Miramontes Farm with 80 cows and through hard work, excellent cow care, and teamwork, they are now milking 400 cows in Grants Pass, Oregon.

Before coming to the United States as teens, the Miramontes’ farming roots started in Mexico where Emma’s grandmother had a few farm animals. Jesús really enjoys the cows. He’s had strong mentorship from dairy farmers along the way who taught him about animal husbandry. For Emma, she loves caring for the calves. “I read a lot of [trade] magazines for information. It’s how we learn. There’s something new to learn every day,” she said.

When asked about some important lessons they have learned over the years, Emma responded without hesitation, “Working as a team.” Jesús and Emma have built their dairy while raising their three children, Manuel, Nancy, and Noah. She said there are good days and bad days in the dairy industry, but regardless the Miramontes family comes together as a team.

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Outstanding in His Field: Noah Miramontes on Dairy Farming and Soccer

Outstanding in His Field: Noah Miramontes on Dairy Farming and Soccer

Soccer Ball Miramontes Dairy

What’s black and white and can be found in a field? A Holstein cow or a soccer ball would both be correct answers – and ninth grader Noah Miramontes knows his way around either one.

As the son of first generation dairy farmers Jesús and Emma Miramontes, Noah has grown up on his family dairy near Grants Pass, Oregon. In addition to working hard alongside his parents on the farm, Noah Miramontes is now a freshman varsity soccer player for North Valley High School.

Making the varsity team wasn’t easy, especially as a freshman. He attributes his success to the lessons he’s learned on the farm and to eating healthy.

Noah Miramontes“The values I learned growing up and working with my family have helped me with success on the soccer team,” said Noah. “Values such as being a team player, keeping an open mind and not trying to control fellow teammates.”

There are so many tasks to complete in any given day on a dairy farm, Noah understands that routine is important as is every pair of hands and feet. Just like soccer. Farm work has also helped him prepare for any weather conditions as well as the hard work and physical demands that comes with playing competitive soccer.

When he’s not working, practicing or playing in a game, Noah enjoys snacking on fruit with peanut butter and washes it down with plenty of milk. In fact, Noah’s favorite dairy product is milk – especially chocolate milk. He recognizes the importance of nutrition to help make him strong so he can continue to improve.

While his big brother and sister have both left the farm to pursue their own passions, Noah knows he has at least a few more years of farm chores ahead of him. But he’s not complaining.

“If we didn’t have a farm, I don’t think I would get to hang out with my mom as often,” said Noah. “Growing up on a farm gives me some great moments with my mom.”

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Meet the Miramontes Family: First Generation Oregon Dairy Farmers

Community Inspired to Live Stronger, Healthier and Happier

livebest-with-yogurtWho doesn’t want to live a stronger, healthier and happier life?

All were elements of Judy Barbe’s Eating Well, Being Well workshop in Tillamook on Saturday, March 11. Barbe is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and a nationally-known author and speaker, and her appearance was sponsored by the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council.

Organized by the Tillamook County Year of Wellness Nutrition Committee, and led by Oregon State University Extension Professor Jessica Linnell, PhD, the event drew more than 70 attendees, including all ages and walks of life. In addition to Tillamook Mayor Suzanne Weber and Commissioner Bill Baertlein, dairy representatives included local dairy farmers Julie Lourenzo and Joanne Seals, as well as Dairy Extension County Leader Troy Downing.

Judy-Barbe-TipsJudy Barbe engaged the audience in exercises aimed at assessing their food and lifestyle choices along with some goal setting activities to make improvements. She made an impression. One of the attendees said, “I am going to lose the prejudices I’ve formed about several food groups.” Another later posted a picture of his notes from the presentation posted on his refrigerator at home. Still another Tweeted about her meal prepping after the workshop.

Barbe gave positive “dairy deliciousness” food suggestions and addressed the health benefits of consuming real dairy. She answered questions about dairy fat and alternative beverages. Hallie Hopkins with Oregon State University Extension Service provided a tasty and instructive food demonstration with bulgur, roasted vegetables and a yogurt sauce made with donated Tillamook yogurt.

“The workshop concluded with participants sharing the goals they set for themselves based on what they learned,” said Anne Goetze, Senior Director of Nutrition Affairs for the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council. “People left motivated to make positive changes.”

THE TILLAMOOK COUNTY YEAR OF WELLNESS NUTRITION COMMITTEE INCLUDES:
Michelle Jenck, Year of Wellness
Laura Swanson, Tillamook Pioneer
Sue Phillips-Meyer, Adventist Health
Hallie Hopkins, Oregon State University Extension
Mis Carlson-Swanson, Oregon Food Bank
Dawna Roesener, Tillamook County WIC
Lauren Sorg, Food Roots
Joyce Trogdon, Rinehart Clinic

RELATED LINKS:

Tillamook County Year of Wellness

LiveBest – website for Judy Barbe, RDN
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