Milk was recognized as the official state beverage of Arkansas in 1985. Dairy farming is an important part of Arkansas agriculture. Reasons for adopting milk as the state beverage included milk’s healthfulness, the desirability of encouraging milk consumption, and the importance of the dairy sector in Arkansas (dairy production was long a mainstay of Arkansas farming).
Milk has been called a nearly perfect food - a source of protein, calcium, and several other important nutrients. Each dairy cow produces about 6.5 gallons of milk per day. Less than half of this milk is consumed as a beverage - the rest is used for butter, cheese, ice cream, milk powder and other processed products.