This is National Dairy Month, observed since 1937 when it was called National Milk Month.

The makers of butter, cheese and ice cream wanted some recognition, so it shortly changed to its current name, and promotes the quality and nutritional benefits of refrigerated dairy products.

Americans consume more dairy products than any other food group except fruits and vegetables, averaging 627 pounds each annually. This includes about 37 pounds of various cheeses; over 23 pounds of ice cream, sherbet and other frozen products; and 155 pounds of milk.

About 131,000 people work in America's dairy manufacturing industry, one that ships products valued at more than $112 billion annually. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online at

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