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Checkoff enters year 3 with the Mayo Clinic collaboration

March 27, 2024


2 minute read

February 2024 marked the beginning of year three of a 5-year collaboration with Mayo Clinic, Dairy Management Inc., National Dairy Council, and the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy. The collaboration includes three focus areas:

  • Research to discover how dairy foods, particularly whole milk dairy, impacts cardiovascular health and metabolic conditions. Other potential research areas include dairy’s role in calm, sleep, digestive health, and immunity.
  • Communicating dairy’s strong body of evidence, new research, and insights with the scientific community, health and wellness professionals, and consumers.
  • Exploring dairy’s role through digital platforms to propel people into a new way of precisely managing their wellness.

Checkoff is happy to report significant progress has been made in all three focus areas. Most recently, the NDC and Mayo Clinic Press collaborated on nutrition and health education content. As a result, the dairy and health page of the Mayo Clinic Press website now contains information about the importance of dairy in the context of the first 1,000 days of life (0-2 years old), heart health, bone health, gut health, and more. Midwest Dairy is amplifying this collaboration by extending these resources to health and wellness thought leaders in our network.

The research area is also progressing. When this work began, three researchers from DMI joined three from Mayo to form the Scientific Advisory Team. The principal investigators from Mayo are physicians and research PhDs/PostDoc scientists. The Request for Applications (RFA) process is overseen by the Mayo Cardiovascular Research Center in Rochester, Minnesota, and each RFA reaches over 700 researchers in Mayo Clinic’s network from US Mayo Clinic locations in Florida, Arizona, and the upper Midwest. Projects are selected based on scientific merit by an independent scientific review team. The first RFA was awarded to a physician in Arizona in 2022, and two projects were selected from the process in 2023, with one awarded to a physician in Minnesota and the other in Arizona.

The NDC’s education and outreach plans for 2024-2025 are still being finalized, and Midwest Dairy is regularly communicating with DMI to support the collaboration as opportunities present themselves in our region.