The Journey of our Milk Reflects Our Commitment to Quality, Sustainability, and Community

Milk is nature’s perfect beverage. Together we work 365 days per year to bring this nutrient-packed and hydrating beverage to consumers’ tables. MDVA’s commitment to quality, sustainability, and community has allowed us to build strong partnerships, co-pack for esteemed customers, and support a diverse range of brands. As we celebrate our 103rd birthday on September 21, we are proud to see our journey to the cooperative that we are more than a century later.

Our farmers are where it all begins. Our cooperative is owned by over 900 family-owned dairy farms across 10 different states. Our farms run the gamut in size, but the families behind them are deeply rooted in tradition and committed to sustainable and ethical practices. Their passion for agriculture and commitment to providing the highest quality milk are the driving forces behind MDVA’s success.

Once raw milk is collected from member farms, it is swiftly transported to one of our five strategically located processing plants. The plant acts as the central hub where the milk is tested, pasteurized, and packaged for distribution. The transportation process is meticulously managed to adhere to government regulations that maintain the milk’s freshness and quality.

In the processing plant, raw milk undergoes rigorous quality checks to ensure it exceeds all federal food safety regulations. We take pride in maintaining the highest levels of hygiene and sanitation to preserve the integrity of our milk. To make the milk safe for consumption and extend its shelf life, raw milk undergoes pasteurization. During pasteurization, the milk is heated to a specific temperature for a set period to kill harmful bacteria without significantly affecting its nutritional content. Our plants currently have conventional “high-temperature short-time” (HTST) pasteurization capabilities.

After pasteurization, raw milk may be separated into its various components: skim milk, whole milk, cream, etc. These components can then be used to produce various dairy products like yogurt, butter, cheese, and ice cream. The packaged milk and other dairy products are then labeled with necessary information like expiration date, nutrition facts, and branding. It is then stored in temperature-controlled environments to maintain its freshness. From the milk plant, the packaged dairy products are distributed to various retail stores, supermarkets, and other outlets, where they are made available to consumers.

The MDVA of today is more than just a raw milk marketer; we bottle and sell our own growing Maola Local Dairies brand to more than 3,000 locations and serve as a trusted co-packer to numerous well-known brands.  Co-packing is the process of producing and packaging a product for different companies, allowing them to have unique branding while utilizing the same high-quality milk. We collaborate with businesses and brands that share our dedication to sustainability and uncompromising quality.

When co-packing for our customers, we adhere to the same safety and quality standards we have for Maola. Our facilities are equipped with state-of-the-art technology to maintain the freshness and nutritional value of milk throughout the packaging process. From a conventional gallon of milk to delightful variations of ice cream, our growing customer relationships are a testament to our commitment to excellence.

The beauty of the dairy industry lies in its ability to cater to different tastes and preferences. Our cooperative embraces this diversity and fosters collaborations with brands that aim to make a positive impact on consumers’ lives. Our multiple plants each specialize in different products that serve our various clients.

MDVA is a respected processor in the dairy industry, co-packing for several well-known brands and supplying them with various dairy products, such as milk, cream, or powder used in the creation of different dairy delicacies. Our wide range of customers reflects our reputation for providing high-quality dairy ingredients to well-regarded brands in the market.

As we look ahead, MDVA remains steadfast in our commitment to fostering responsible growth and being a leader in dairy through our commitment to our environmental goals. Additionally, we seek to expand our customer relationships with those who share our sustainability values – and want to put some skin in the game. By doing so, we will make a positive impact on all of U.S. dairy while accomplishing our member-led strategic plan.

The journey our farmers’ milk takes from farm to table is a testament to the passion of our employees, strategic connections with our customers, and the grit and dedication behind our owners – our farmers.  With every glass of milk, quart of cream, and half-gallon of ice cream sold, we know our cooperative’s efforts have contributed to the health of our consumers and the health of our local environment.