The Old Style Milkman Exists and Technology is Needed

Image from Washington Post.

Image from Washington Post.

August 30, 2013

By Dr. Tyra OldhamLANDsds Sustainable Voice News

As an urban dweller agriculture is what we can buy at  the local market or Kroger’s, Safeway or Wholefoods. Agriculture today is the nexus of energy, technology, science and environment in the production of food. The story of the old style milkman is far from knowing with the exception of movies and television.  The milkman of today is a fusion of  logistics, process, production, health, safety and consumer appeal.  The old school milk run delivery is innovating as “Technology ushers locally produced milk, food from the farm to the table” for the consumers of today.

Wasington Post reported as in Leave it to Beaver the the “milkman brings two-and-a-half gallons of South Mountain Creamery’s freshest to Cynthia Terrell’s Takoma Park home each Tuesday, carefully placing the glass bottles on her front porch before dawn and collecting the empty containers from last week’s delivery.”

“Middletown, Md.-based South Mountain Creamery delivers dairy, meat, eggs and bread to an average of 7,000 households a week from their first delivery to 13 homes in the back of a Ford Explorer more than a decade ago.”

The growth has been a logistical undertaking that requires more than just additional farmland, cattle, equipment, trucks and drivers. Underpinning the all-natural process is a gamut of man-made technologies, from robots that milk the cows to software that maps delivery routes.

The use of technology can be an aid to businesses, restaurants and consumers of Greater Washington. The technology parade may cause efficiency and lean operations but may not fit the economics and consumer demand. This leads to  Gabriella Petrick, a George Mason University professor who studies the evolution of food production and human taste  who states, “It’s incredibly difficult in an economical and efficient way to get the products to market because the logistical systems that have developed favor bigger and more streamlined [operations].”
Technology is not human. The need for human capital interfacing within technology and modeling systems that adopt lean and efficient solutions that synthesize the consumer is important.  The farmer and smaller agribusinesses of today are challenged.  Further, Petrick states, “It’s really hard to do and make a living out of,” within today’s marketplace.
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Posted in Agricultural, Business, Economics, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Manufacturing and Processes, Nexus, Sustainability Nexuses, Technology
One comment on “The Old Style Milkman Exists and Technology is Needed
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