Depending on your age, your memories of the milkman—a delivery person in a crisp white uniform dropping off dairy essentials like glass-bottled milk and cream along with eggs—might come from old sitcoms. As a result of shelter-in-home orders due to COVID-19, however, the seemingly antiquated task is making a comeback.
According to CBS New York, services like Westchester Milk and Mitch the Milkman have picked up steam in recent weeks in the tri-state area as people have been more reluctant to venture to stores for home essentials. The businesses, which usually rely on large orders from schools and daycares, are now seeing a shift to residential accounts. Mitch the Milkman, located on Long Island, has seen a 600 percent increase in business.
Ed Seabridge, who owns Suncrest Farms in Totowa, New Jersey, told NJ.com that his service is now fielding 90 to 100 calls every day. Udderly Delicious, based in Old Bridge, New Jersey, has seen their business double.
Aside from convenience, milk delivery also often offers other essentials like butter, orange juice, and cheese. And many people consider bottled milk and its farm-to-table expedited delivery some of the best they’ve had.
Milk delivery waned in the latter half of the 20th century as supermarkets with vast inventories began to take hold. While the services endured, home delivery accounted for less than 1 percent of dairy sales. If people continue to be wary of venturing to stores even after social distancing recommendations are relaxed, milkmen might be here to stay—with one crucial difference. Unlike their 1950s counterparts, today's milkmen offer almond milk and Lactaid.
[h/t CBS New York]