Most people would tell you farm fresh milk tastes better from a glass bottle. But what happens if the farmers can’t get those bottles?
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Burbach’s Countryside Dairy in Hartington, Nebraska supplies milk across South Dakota, Nebraska and Iowa. They run their business with sustainability in mind, asking customers to return their glass milk bottles after use. But, they have been seeing fewer bottles being returned, and fear with the trucking issues in Canada, they won’t have enough bottles to meet the milk demand.

Saving the environment one bottle at a time… That’s the slogan for this northeast Nebraska Dairy.
But even when customers return these glass bottles to be reused, the dairy still needs to order new ones.

“We typically order bottles three times a year, three or four times. Sales have been increasing steadily which always takes up more bottles. And then also, this last shipment kind of coincided with this trucker protest thing, so we are a little nervous whether or not they will actually get shipped out in time,” said owner Dean Burbach.

That order should supply the dairy with about 16,000 bottles. If it doesn’t arrive, they will face challenges filling their orders. Customers can help ease the stress byt returning the empty bottles.

“Typically return them back to the point of purchase. Some of the stores will require them to go through customer service, but most of them will just take the bottle at the check out and refund the deposit,” said Dean.

Glass bottles keep plastic out of the landfills and keep the milk tasting farm fresh.

“We’ve had a lot of people email us and call us and say thank you for providing milk in returnable glass bottles and they’ve also called and said they think our milk is the best they’ve ever tasted,” said Lisa Burbach, Vice President and owner.

The dairy fills over 8,000 of these bottles per week in a variety of flavors.

“We always do chocolate, then we will rotate between cotton candy, and strawberry. Then we also have a rotation of what we call the feature flavor which is caramel, orange, banana, blue raspberry. There’s some customers that really just like that for their kids and its a fun drink that’s actually healthy for you as well,” said Dean.

But if people don’t turn in their bottles, those fun flavors could be harder to find.

Burbach’s milk can be purchased in many locations across the region.

“New Zealand farmers will be happy with this result,” said NZX dairy analyst Alex Winning.

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