Impact

2020 Highlights

Despite everything that was happening in the world, Switch4Good had a big impact in 2020:

people reached

dairy-free actions at switch4good.org

downloads in 24 hours from Earth Day’s 50th anniversary

unique Podcast downloads

completed Lactose Intolerance Tests

petitions to remove dairy from US Dietary Guidelines (27% of total)

We Took a Stand with Team USA Athletes

The United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) has promoted milk to its athletes and the general public for years. In 2020, nine Team USA athletes sent a letter to the USOPC demanding the organization stop promoting unhealthy products—like cow’s milk—to its athletes and fans. This promotion of dairy undermines the core mission of the USOPC and jeopardizes the short and long-term health of its athletes. As an organization that was created to protect and promote its athletes’ wellbeing, the USOPC promotion of cow’s milk is unacceptable.

• Over 3000 emails sent from our supporters

Activists

Actions

• We launched a campaign to rally support for Team USA athletes
• Led action workshops to empower supporters
• Placed 3 full-page ads in cities with USOPC training centers

Impact

We put the USOPC on notice. While at first they dismissed the scientific evidence the athletes presented as “opinion,” they engaged in correspondence with us. Three USOPC leaders received nearly 1,000 emails each and several voice messages all in support of the Team USA athletes who sent their letter of concern regarding the promotion of cow’s milk. We will continue to pressure the USOPC with emails, voice messages, and public-facing content.

Next steps

This campaign is on-going. To send an email to the leaders of the USOPC and stand with Team USA athletes, click here.

Changing the US Dietary Guidelines

Promoting cow’s milk as “health food” is a form of dietary racism when over 70% of non-white Americans are lactose intolerant. In 2020, the US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee revised the Guidelines as they do every five years. We mounted a petition campaign to get dairy removed; to include non-dairy alternatives; and to provide education about lactose intolerance.

• Soy milk added to Guidelines as nutritionally equivalent to cow’s milk.

• 20,000 public comments in 10 days.

Activists

Actions

• Testified twice before the Dietary Guidelines Committee
• Met 4 times with USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
• Galvanized followers to flood public comments with demands to remove dairy from the Guidelines

Impact

We won. The 2020-2025 US Dietary Guidelines include soy milk as “nutritionally equivalent” to cow’s milk—with this language prominent in the dairy food group.

We made history. We generated 20,000 public comments in just 10 days—27% of the total—demanding dairy’s removal from the Guidelines.

Next steps

This is a significant victory. While dairy is still included as a food group, our united front prompted the USDA to take progressive action. We are working on a campaign to ensure soy milk is available in all public schools. Current federal law does not reflect the Guidelines’ recent inclusion of soy milk as a nutritionally equivalent alternative, and students must provide a doctor’s note to exempt themselves from taking a carton of cow’s milk under the National School Lunch Program. We resolve to change this.

Challenging Dairy Propaganda with “Listen to Your Gut”

For decades, Big Dairy has told everyone they must drink milk to be healthy and strong. However, in truth, dairy sickens most people. And a growing number of successful athletes are performing at the top of their game on a dairy-free, plant-based diet. We mounted a broadcast media campaign to set the record straight called Listen to Your Gut.

• 30 million people reached.

• 265,000 dairy-free actions.

• 40% increase in web traffic.

Actions

• Ran 3 powerful TV spots on key NBC affiliates featuring 9 Olympic-level athletes.
• Ran 3 radio ads, featuring the same athletes, for 3 months in 8 major media markets.

Impact

We moved the needle. Listen to Your Gut was a massive 3-month effort with unprecedented national exposure. Our campaign reached over 30 million people with a simple, powerful message. And with a 40% increase in website traffic—generating over 265,000 dairy-free actions —we clearly tapped into a pent-up desire people have to switch to a dairy-free lifestyle.

View the campaign commercials, here.

Combatting Dairy’s False Advertising

Big Dairy uses selective science and slick marketing campaigns to promote products with demonstrably negative health effects. For example, MilkPEP and its subsidiary—Built with Chocolate Milk—claim that cow’s milk is the optimal post-workout beverage, citing a self-funded study based on just seven white Irish men—all pre-selected for lactase persistence. Built with Chocolate Milk is particularly notorious for spinning questionable science into convincing advertisements for athletes. We sent a formal complaint to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to prevent MilkPEP from continuing its misleading advertising based on selective science.

Actions

• Sent a formal complaint to the FTC
• Mounted a social media campaign

Impact

The FTC dismissed our complaint. This was not a surprise, given the cozy relationships between Big Dairy and numerous branches of government. So, we will continue to fight for fair and true dairy advertising on all fronts—policy and advocacy; peer-reviewed science and research; and grassroots activism via petitions, social media and other digital communications campaigns.

Next steps

We are combatting the on-going milk marketing by disseminating our Scientific Report on Cow’s Milk, Health, and Athletic Performance to coaches and trainers ranging from the high school level to the pros. This unprecedented, research-based report is a compilation of articles written by dairy-free experts in the fields of dietetics, medicine, and sports nutrition. The goal is to educate leaders in the world of sport and help them see through the misleading milk marketing.

Stop the Subsidies

The US government has a decades-long history of using American tax dollars to prop up the dying dairy industry. In 2020 alone, the US government spent $2.9 billion in direct payments to dairy farmers. Sometimes, the milk just gets dumped before it can even be put to use. Over 40 million gallons of milk is dumped before it even makes it to a supermarket. All that pollution and animal abuse are caused year after year for absolutely no gain. The US government currently oversees eight unique subsidy programs to support the dairy industry. The American public deserves better from its government and we are leading the call for change in dairy subsidies.

• 300+ petition signatures.

• 800+ public comments.

Actions

We amplified your voice. We created a petition, gathering over 3000 signatures and 800 comments asking the US Department of Agriculture to stop the subsidies.

Impact

Through paid and organic efforts, we broadened our reach, educated a larger demographic than our expected audience, and motivated them to take action against dairy subsidies.

Next steps

Our campaign is ongoing—add your name to the petition here. The letter, along with your signature, will be submitted to the United States Department of Agriculture.

Earth Day’s 50th Anniversary

Earth Day 2020 was the first time the Earth Day Network (EDN) formally included diet in the climate change discussion. Switch4Good was the prime resource for the “fight climate change with diet change” theme. We worked closely with the Earth Day Network to educate the masses about the negative effects of dairy consumption on the planet.

• 2 million Switch4Good downloads in 24 hours.

• 3.8 million impressions.

Actions

• Spearheaded “fight climate change with diet change” messaging.
• Outperformed all other live-streamed content

Impact

We put diet change on the global climate change map. Switch4Good content was incorporated into EDN’s global live stream and our content was streamed throughout Earth Day 2020. Our diet change public service announcement played to a live viewer audience of over 130,000 viewers.

Next steps

We are working on an Environmental Impact Calculator to further educate the world about the environmental detriments of dairy. We are also incorporating environmental topics more regularly into our social media and blog content. 

Financial Reports

Your donation dollars are at work to fight consumer fraud, eradicate dietary racism, and support planetary responsibility.

Where Does Your Money Go?

For every dollar you give, 87% goes directly toward ending the consumption of dairy. We spend the rest on fundraising and admin needs. We rely 100% on passionate donors like you to make an impact.

View our 990.

40% Dairy-Free Outreach & Campaigns Focused on Human Behavior Change
20% Corporate Partnerships & Major League Sports Teams Engagement
18% Legal Advocacy – Policy Change at State and Federal Levels
13% Admin, Finance, and Business Intelligence
9% Scientific Research
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