RADFORD—Montgomery County dairy and sweet corn producers Casey and Stacey Phillips of Dry Valley Farms participated in the Dairy Industry’s #MilkTruth campaign this past winter and received mixed messages. The campaign gave those in the dairy industry the opportunity to share information on social media using the hashtag #MilkTruth. After posting, Stacey Phillips said she read many comments from animal rights activists who were trying to highjack the campaign. “Several groups posted many untruths about the animal practices that take place in the dairy industry,” Phillips said. “Given my firsthand knowledge of dairy operations, I felt compelled to post the truth so that those reading the posts would see someone from the dairy industry standing up.” When she posted about how she and other dairy farmers take care of their cattle she was instantly called a liar and a murderer. “I found that the people posting for the animal rights groups were quick to be very cruel with their replies, despite my response being very civil.” Phillips noted that farmers also care about consumers and their health. “We feed our families these products that people are bashing; that should be the ultimate show of just how safe we know these products are,” she said. After the campaign, the Phillipses continued to use their farm’s Facebook page ( Facebook.com/DryValleyFarms ) to address agriculture misconceptions. They feel it’s their responsibility as agriculture professionals to promote the truth about their industry. “We started on social media as a way to give people an insight into farming and to advertise our pick-your-own corn patch, but the harsh response I received during the #MilkTruth campaign prompted me to take it further,” Phillips said. “We still use social media to promote our business, but we also use it to stand up for ourselves and educate the public too.” Media: Contact Sara Owens , VFBF communications, at 804-290-1133.