There’s a bit of a contretemps involving a satirical commercial starring Aubrey Plaza for something called Wood Milk and I’d like to discuss it.
Essentially, the commercial attempts to discredit plant-based milk products by promoting the fictional milk made from wood. A complaint was filed over the commercial and a quick perusal of comments indicates most people don’t fully understand the complaint at all.
The Dairy Promotion Program
Basically, the advertisement is a product of the Dairy Promotion Program and essentially funded by the United States Government. Way back in 1983, dairy farmers in the United States noticed a decline in the amount of milk being consumed. What did they do? Like any good modern-day crony-capitalist, they went running to the government for help.
The government collects money from dairy farmers and runs advertisements for them. It’s a bit more complicated than that, but that’s largely the gist of it.
Dairy Management Inc
Remember Got Milk? See any generic advertisements for cheese? Seen the Aubrey Plaza advertisement for Wood Milk? That’s all the government, or as they like to say, quasi-government agencies. Dairy Management Inc. runs all of these campaigns using money collected from dairy operations. They run advertisements primarily to elementary and high school students. Got a problem with indoctrination anyone?
The money is collected from dairy organizations, so it’s fine, right? Wrong. The money is collected from dairy organizations who pass that cost along to you and then the DMI strongarms fast-food companies into having more milk and cheese-based items and advertises to promote them, mainly to children.
The Problem with Wood Milk
The problem with the Wood Milk advertisement is that it negatively attacks plant-based milk products. It doesn’t just promote milk. That’s government playing favorites in a blatant fashion. I’ll be honest, my problems with the DMI and the DPP extend far beyond Wood Milk. They are organizations that should not exist.
Government in Advertising
Does the government advertise whiskey? Beer? Soda? It does not and it should not. If any dairy company wants to create an advertisement, that’s well and good, that’s capitalism. If a bunch of dairy companies want to pool their money and run advertisements promoting their product, I don’t have a problem with that either.
It’s the government involvement that sticks in the craw of this Libertarian. Particularly when that advertisement takes aim at a rival product.
I’d be just as upset if the government advertised solar energy over oil and I suspect a lot of people who support the DMI and DPP would as well.
Yes, milk consumption is going down in the United States and has been for decades. It’s not the fault of plant-based milk products, it’s the free market. People like bottled water more than milk. If a product isn’t desired by the public anymore, then the government shouldn’t be involved in propping up the industry for the sake of jobs.