It's been a challenging six months for Australian producers, farmers and the hospitality industry.
First with the droughts and bushfires and now the ongoing challenge of COVID-19.
Closures of restaurants, cafes and other food stores are having a flow-on impact for some Australian cheese producers.
In late July, Dairy Australia developed a consumer campaign highlighting the importance of supporting local cheesemakers, farmers and communities so they can continue to grow and thrive during these unprecedented times, ensuring they are still here for tomorrow.
With travel across the country not possible for all, Australians were encouraged to instead, travel with their taste buds this winter and support local dairy producers, by buying Australian Cheese from around the country.
Dairy industry supporter and chef Matt Moran joined the campaign and urged Australians to support local dairy and explore more of the country through the quality cheeses that we have in our own backyard.
"With the combination of top-quality fresh milk and cultural influences from around the world, Australia is uniquely positioned to produce some of the most varied and high-quality ranges of cheese in the world," Mr Moran said.
"As Australians, we are so lucky to have such a fantastic range of dairy produce on our doorstep."
The campaign generated strong national coverage including a front cover article and online story featured in 'Good Food' (print lift-out featured in The Age and Sydney Morning Herald) and a front page article of 'Hibernation', a lift-out supplement featured in News Corp's major mastheads, including Herald Sun, Daily Telegraph, Courier Mail and Adelaide Advertiser, and coverage in Gourmet Traveller.
As Australians, we are so lucky to have such a fantastic range of dairy produce on our doorstep.
The articles highlighted why it's more important than ever to eat Australian-made cheese and featured insights and tips from several Aussie cheesemongers and producers and Matt Moran's top tips for building a gourmet Australian cheese board.
The campaign activity featured on the Australian Dairy Facebook and Instagram, and there is a dedicated webpage for people who want to find out more information on how they can support Australian cheese, see www.dairy.com.au/buylocal.
Jonathan Brown and Dairy Australia educate Australians on the growing concern of ISO-BONES
Healthy Bones Action Week is a Dairy Australia initiative that has been educating adults and school children about the importance of building and maintaining good bone health and the role of dairy foods each August for more than 25 years.
Since the introduction of COVID-19 restrictions, Aussies are spending more time at home than ever before, which may mean moving less and eating differently.
These habits could impact on bone health and Dairy Australia wanted to educate Australians on the growing concern of ISO-BONES.
To drive home this message, Healthy Bones Action Week embraced online fitness and wellness trends to provide Aussies with daily video inspiration to improve their bone health, wherever they were.
A five-piece video content series was developed.
AFL legend and dairy industry ambassador Jonathan Brown and bone health expert Dr Sandra Iuliano starred in the first video, discussing the impact of COVID-19 on Aussie bones, and what actions Australians can take to maintain bone health, including eating enough dairy foods.
Jonathan Brown and Dr Iuliano also discussed the importance of taking care of bones for children.
The remaining videos featured dietitians from the Health Performance Collective, fitness instructor /online influencer Sarah Piotrowski and St Kilda Football Club dietitian Alison Miles who discussed the role of dairy in bone health, the three key actions to support healthy bones (calcium from dairy foods, weight-bearing exercise and Vitamin D from safe sunshine) and why dairy is so important in the diet.
They were shared with the media and through social media and partner channels.
These videos are able to be viewed on the Australian Dairy social pages and at dairy.com.au.
To leverage the popularity of Healthy Bones Action Week in schools, Discover Dairy along with Kimberlin Education launched an 'Expert Classroom' video.
Dr Sandra Iuliano featured in the 10-minute education session explaining the importance of bone health to students and the three key steps to building and maintaining healthy bones, with a focus on dairy foods.
To follow up on their learning, students could participate in a live Q&A with Dr Iuliano later in the week and download a healthy bones planner and jigsaw puzzle from the website.
Both videos achieved x number of views from teachers and parents with an approximate reach of x number primary school students.
To watch the Expert Classroom video, head to www.dairy.edu.au.
Health professionals and consumers are introduced to the dairy matrix
Scientists and nutritionists are recognising that the effects of foods extend beyond the benefits of the individual nutrients they contain.
They are discovering that it is the way nutrients interact within the food's physical matrix can determine a food's health properties.
Scientists are calling this the 'food matrix effect'.
There is now an opportunity to reposition dairy foods (milk, cheese, yoghurt) and their health benefits in a whole new way.
Dairy foods naturally contain a package of nutrients and bioactive factors that piece together to form a unique food matrix - it cannot be mimicked.
It is the unique dairy matrix that is responsible for its many health benefits.
Research has linked dairy's unique matrix with a reduced risk of heart disease, hypertension and type two diabetes, as well as promoting bone, teeth and muscle health.
Plant-based beverages and products are often marketed as substitutes for dairy products, even though their nutrient content differs substantially from dairy.
Some of these products have been fortified, in efforts to mimic the nutritional profile of milk, but it is unknown whether the additives have the same bioavailability and beneficial effect as dairy.
Dairy Australia commenced an 'introduction to the dairy matrix' with a press ad targeting GPs in the Australian Doctor Magazine.
This was supported by a white paper, a technical information document written by Dairy Australia's nutrition scientist Dr Rivkeh Haryono.
The dairy matrix story will be brought further to life for GPs with two more 'chapters' around cheese and heart health towards the end of 2020.
The dairy matrix campaign for consumers kicked off at the end of August and will run until the end of October.
Taking a slightly different direction to how GPs were introduced to the matrix, the target consumer audience, the Changemakers, were shown how the dairy matrix could positively affect them as individuals.
This was achieved through an explainer video which featured a set of personas from a cross section of society which highlighted how the matrix can help individual bodies with their health goals.
This explainer video is going to be supported by a content partnership with 'The Guardian'.
Four articles over September are set to discuss different topics which will delve deeper into the dairy matrix, supported by digital ads directing people to watch the explainer video housed on dairy.com.au/dairymatrix.
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