DALLAS (AP) – Dean Foods, America’s biggest milk processor, has filed for bankruptcy amid a steep, decades-long drop-off in U.S. milk consumption blamed on soda, juices and, more recently, nondairy substitutes.
The Dallas company said it may sell itself to the Dairy Farmers of America, a marketing cooperative owned by thousands of farmers.
Dean Foods Co. has lost money in eight of its last 10 quarters and in seven of its last eight quarters it’s posted declining sales.
Since 1975, the amount of milk consumed per capita in the U.S. has tumbled more than 40%. Americans consumed around 24 gallons per year in 1996, according to government data. That dropped to 17 gallons in 2018.