The Return of the Milkman

Milk boxes have returned to doorsteps across America, but they’re filled with much more than fresh milk. Local ice cream, butter, artisan bread, and cold brew coffee are turning old-fashioned milk delivery into a modern convenience. This may be a viable way for dairy farmers to contend with the excess organic and conventional milk supply, plummeting prices, mega-size dairy farms crossing state lines, and the burgeoning global plant-based dairy market, which is forecast to hit $16.3 billion next year, according to Innova Market Insights.

While some dairies charge a fee for the service, others, like Washington state’s Smith Brothers Farms, a local family-owned and -operated dairy that has been serving the greater Puget Sound area for more than 90 years, offer free delivery for orders over $10 of its organic dairy products, as well as an array of local and artisan groceries, to more than 50,000 homes a week. It also supplies an insulated porch box, and a dedicated delivery person.

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