Education On The Road Is A Winning Partnership

Sep 14, 2015
part of the sign that says "amazing" at the dairy discovery zone

“What does a dairy farmer look like?” It’s the most common question Kaci Creel hears when promoting the dairy industry. The Consumer Marketing Director for Dairy MAX says, “It seems like a basic question, but consumers really want to know who is producing their food.”

That’s why walking into the Dairy Discovery Zone at this month’s New Mexico State Fair or State Fair of Texas®, the first thing visitors will see is an Instagram-style wall featuring photos of real dairy farmers who are part of the Our Land, Our Cows, Our Passion℠campaign.

She says the pictures connect consumers with real dairy farmers - they put a face to what had previously been a faceless industry. Ultimately it inspires consumer confidence.

 “Consumers are interested in where their food comes from and how it’s produced,” Creel says. “The Dairy Discovery Zone allows us to show them.”

Something visitors won’t see much of in the Dairy Discovery Zone is a lot of text.

“The setup allows us to educate consumers in an entertaining way,” Creel says. “Interactive technology is such a big part of kids’ lives now. We can’t just educate, we have to entertain them, too.”

Dairy MAX has strategically placed the Dairy Discovery Zone away from the show barns in an effort to reach more of the urban population.

“We feel like being among all the other consumer-oriented fun areas, more people will discover us without having to specifically seek us out.”

Creel adds that through the Dairy Discovery Zone, school tours and other programs, Dairy MAX has cultivated symbiotic relationships with the Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma state fairs.

“We’re helping them promote their event and they help us promote dairy,” she says. “If you think about it, we have the same goals and the same target audience. We both want to reach consumers and school-aged children to educate them about agriculture and local industry.”

The winning partnerships aim to connect with over 200,000 consumers of all ages and backgrounds annually throughout multiple states. The hope is that each individual who walks through the Dairy Discovery Zone leaves knowing a little more about where their favorite dairy products come from and what a dairy farmer looks like.