World Milk Day is being celebrated on 3 June this year as the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation initiative reaches its 21st year.

The day seeks to recognise the global importance of milk as a food, as well as the significance of the dairy sector in supporting the livelihoods of one billion people worldwide.

GAA players Grace Walsh, Cian Lynch and Con O’Callaghan have teamed up with the National Dairy Council (NDC) and the ‘Everything Starts with Milk’ campaign to support the essential role of milk in sports players’ pre- and post-training regime.

“Milk helps me to keep my energy levels up during a match and aid my recovery afterwards,” explained Kilkenny camogie star and milk ambassador Grace Walsh.

The three players have been appointed this year’s sports milk ambassadors for the ‘Everything Starts with Milk’ initiative, run by the European Milk Forum in partnership with NDC.

Awareness campaign

The ‘Everything Starts with Milk’ initiative will campaign for Irish consumers to drink more milk through raising awareness of the nutritional benefits of milk and the support the natural drink delivers to optimum sport performance.

“This year, I hope to bring an insight into how I take my health as seriously as my physical training when I’m off the pitch,” continued Walsh.

“Strength and ability to play camogie at a top level takes practise and hard work, so having a diet that supplies sufficient energy, and is rich in proteins, minerals and vitamins, is important,” she said.

The NDC and the European Milk Forum have an education and outreach focus and are anticipating hosting in-person and virtual events later in the year.

The events are hoped to allow young people to meet the three sports milk ambassadors.