Got Milk? misses the mark in new PSA about misinformation

Milk carton voiced by Billy West
Milk carton voiced by Billy West

The California Milk Processor Board's latest PSA inadequately takes aim at fake news about milk.

The California Milk Processor Board’s (CMPB) latest PSA is a war on misinformation and fake news, but the spot fails to deliver the most crucial piece of information about its own product. 

The four-minute and 25-second long cartoon ad features roughly ten seconds of facts about milk, namely that its "packed with nutrients, a great source of protein and makes your bones real strong." Yet it features nothing about the incorrect facts people may have heard about dairy milk.

The rest of the advertisement seems more like a political ad than a dairy one, with a lovable milk carton character voiced by Billy West explaining the ins and outs of fake news, internet trolls and the deep web. Perhaps a bit heavy for children, which it would seem this ad is targeting. 

The campaign comes on the heels of a tough year for the dairy industry as consumers flock to nut and plant-based alternatives.

According to The Dairy Farmers of America, which represents roughly 30 percent of milk producers in the U.S., its total sales in 2018 had dropped by roughly $1.1 billion compared to the previous year, while plant and nut-based milks increased by about 9 percent in the same period. 

But based on the "Know the Facts" campaign, the CMPB sees misinformation about dairy milk as a much more serious threat than that posed by plant and nut-based milks. 

In fact, the ad features the dairy milk carton coexisting with other milk types. 

Despite being animated by JJ Sedelmaier, award-winning director/ designer of Schoolhouse Rock! fame, the ad still misses the mark via its messaging. 

Any adult watching this film will feel a twinge of nostalgia as the Schoolhouse Rock! inspired milk carton explains how information is spread and falsities arise - all in a rhyming sing songy way. (The internet trolls segment, however, doesn't deserve rhymes, the milk explains). 

Overall, the PSA feels like a misstep as it glosses over the facts it so desperately wants consumers to know. 

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