Inland Northwest Milk Mystery Revisited

Last year in our quest for local food we took on the surprisinglychallenging task of sourcing milk that comes from Inland Northwest farmers and cows. We visited the Inland Northwest Dairy site on Francis near Division, we talked to grocery stores and finally got a somewhat definitive answer from Behm's Dairy on how to identify local milk. It's been one of the most referenced and linked posts from our blog.

I've got some new information that may muddy the waters (or milk) when it comes to identifying local milk. The last year has been a complete mess for the dairy industry. Farmers' have been going under as worldwide demand for milk has plummeted in the down economy. Prices have crashed and the business of milk has been in turmoil. Apparently Spokane's Inland Northwest Dairies L.L.C. has not escaped the changing milk landscape.

When we visited in January 2008 they explained that the company was majority owned by the employees. Darigold at the time had a minority ownership stake. A friend told me last week that at some point last year Darigold bought out the employees. I checked the Inland Northwest Dairies site and there is nothing there. I need to do some more investigating but with their near monopoly of milk production in Washington I suspect milk is moving more freely across the region than maybe it was before.

Does anyone have any more information on this?

Spokane Familiy Farm is a sure fire way to get local milk.