FAQs – Hiland Dairy


Milk Crate Theft Laws

  • Q Why are milk crate theft laws necessary?

    The theft of milk crates costs the dairy industry more than $80 million a year, which drives up the cost of a container of milk and increases greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Q Is it legal to purchase Hiland Dairy milk crates?

    Hiland Dairy does not sell milk crates, but instead recycles old milk crates into new ones. Never purchase Hiland Dairy milk crates from a third party, as the sale is not legal.

  • Q How do I return a milk crate that belongs to Hiland Dairy?

    You can contact your local Hiland Dairy plant to arrange a pickup.

Our Milk Contains No Artificial Growth Hormones

  • Q What is rbST?

    Recombinant bovine growth hormone (also known as rbGH) is a genetically engineered drug. It is injected into dairy cows to induce them to increase milk production, typically by 5-15%. It is estimated that 15-20% of the cows in the United States are injected with this hormone. It was approved by the FDA in 1993.

  • Q Does Hiland Dairy use milk from cows treated with rbST?

    No, effective February 1, 2008, Hiland Dairy will only use milk from dairy farmers who have pledged not to treat their cows with artificial growth hormones. While the FDA has not found a significant difference between milk from treated and untreated herds, some of our customers prefer their milk to come from untreated cows.

  • Q What is the FDA's stance on rbST?

    Before the 1993 approval of rbST, the FDA determined that the recombinant, or genetically engineered form of bST, is virtually identical to a cow's natural somatotropin, a hormone produced in the pituitary gland that stimulates the production of milk. During that rbST approval process, the FDA concluded that there is no significant difference between milk from treated and untreated cows. For that reason, the FDA also concluded it does not have the authority to require special labeling for milk and dairy products from rbST-treated cows and that producers have no basis for claiming that milk from cows not treated with rbST is safer than milk from rbST-treated cows.

Product Quality

  • Q How can I preserve the freshness, flavor and quality of my Hiland Dairy products?

    To preserve the quality of milk and other dairy foods, the following practices are recommended for consumers:

    • Containers. All Hiland Dairy products are packaged in proper containers to achieve maximum shelf life. It is not recommended that you serve or store the products in alternate containers. Proper containers protect milk from exposure to sunlight, bright daylight and strong fluorescent light. This will prevent the development of off-flavors and reductions in light-sensitive nutrients such as riboflavin, ascorbic acid and vitamin B6.
    • Storage of milk. Refrigerate milk at 40°F or less (preferably below 35°F) as soon as possible after purchase. (We recommend keeping a small Styrofoam cooler in your car during hot months to prevent spoilage of milk in the trunk.) Keep milk containers closed to prevent the absorption of other food flavors in the refrigerator. An absorbed flavor changes the taste but the milk is still safe. Storing milk in the door of the refrigerator can cause it to spoil before the expiration date as the door is not as cold as the rest of the refrigerator. Use milk in the order purchased. Return the milk container to the refrigerator immediately to prevent bacterial growth. Temperatures above 40°F reduce the shelf life of milk and other milk products. Never return unused milk to the original container.
    • Storing cheese. Cheeses should be wrapped tightly in the original wrapping, other wrapping or tightly covered refrigerator containers for refrigerator storage. Unopened jars of cheese spreads and cheese foods can be stored at room temperature (70°F) for about 3 months. However, once these products are opened, they should be tightly covered and refrigerated to prevent drying and an unattractive "oiling off." Grated cheeses in moisture-proof packages will keep for about 3 months at room temperature or about 12 months at a refrigerator temperature of 40°F or below.
    • Yogurt, buttermilk and acidophilus milk should be stored in closed containers in the refrigerator at 40°F to maintain their quality. Yogurt will keep for about a week and buttermilk and acidophilus milk will keep for about 2 weeks in the refrigerator. Freezing is not recommended for any of these cultured dairy foods.
    • Store ice cream tightly covered in the freezer at 0°F. To avoid crystallization and volume loss, scoop ice cream, keeping the surface as level as possible. Cover the surface of ice cream with plastic wrap before re-closing and return to the freezer immediately.
    • To preserve Hiland Dairy butter flavor and freshness, refrigerate opened butter in a covered dish in the butter compartment. Unopened, wrapped salted butter may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 months. Butter can be frozen in its original wrapper for several months. Unsalted butter is best kept frozen until ready to use. For longer freezer storage, wrap in foil or plastic. Unsalted butter can be kept frozen for about 5 months at 0°F. Salted butter can be frozen for about 6 to 9 months.
    • To store cream, keep it refrigerated in its closed container at 40°F or lower. It should be used within one week. Ultra-pasteurized cream keeps several weeks longer, but once opened, it should be handled like pasteurized cream. Freezing is not recommended for unwhipped cream, but once whipped, cream may be frozen. Place dollops of whipped cream on waxed paper and freeze. When frozen, wrap individually for use as needed.
  • Q What do the dates on the container mean?

    The date on milk and other dairy food containers indicates when the product was manufactured or meant to be sold by. It is used by the industry to indicate the age of individual packages and does not reflect the shelf life of the product. Generally, proper care ensures freshness for a few days beyond the "sell by" date. Regulation of open dating varies among states and municipalities.

  • Q Which of Hiland Dairy's products are gluten-free?

    For our customers with gluten intolerance or celiac disease, our gluten-free products are a healthy alternative. A large list of dairy products and beverages is available to choose from. View our gluten free products. Please note that our dairy foods and beverages not listed here may contain gluten.

  • Q Can I use my Hiland Dairy products after the date on the container?

    If properly refrigerated, milk generally stays fresh for several days after the "sell by" date.

  • Q Where does Hiland Dairy get its milk?

    You can count on us for the freshest, best-tasting products around. When you choose Hiland Dairy, you know you're getting hometown quality and freshness from a dairy farm near you. We're proud of our farmer-owners who operate dairy farms with care to ensure we deliver the purest, most wholesome products to your table. The best part is that most of Hiland's farmer-owners live within a 100-mile radius of our processing plants–giving true meaning to "fresh from our farms to your table."

  • Q Can I freeze my Hiland Dairy products?

    With the exception of butter, ice cream, frozen yogurt, and other frozen dairy desserts, freezing of most dairy foods (e.g., milk, cream, yogurt, milk puddings, soft cheeses) is not recommended. Although natural hard cheeses, semi-hard cheeses and processed cheeses can be frozen, freezing affects their texture, causing them to become crumbly and mealy after thawing. However, they are suitable for cooking and/or for use in salads or salad dressing. If frozen, cheeses should be thawed slowly in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Cheese that has been frozen should be used as soon as possible after thawing.

  • Q Where can I buy my favorite Hiland Dairy products?

    Look for Hiland Dairy products at your favorite stores in Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas. We're your hometown favorite!

  • Q How do I request that Hiland Dairy products are carried at my local grocer?

    Please print and fill out this form and take it to your local grocer. Thank you! - Hiland Shopper Request Form.

  • Q Are Hiland Dairy containers recyclable?

    Yes. All Hiland Dairy paper and plastic containers are recyclable. Check with your local recycling facility to determine which products they may or may not accept for recycling. Visit our sustainability page.

  • Q Is it possible to receive Hiland Dairy products if I live outside of the distribution areas?

    To maintain the quality of our products, it is not currently possible for us to ship them outside of our distribution area.

  • Q What is pasteurization?

    Developed by Louis Pasteur in the 1920s, pasteurization is a heating process used to destroy bacteria, such as salmonella and E. coli. During pasteurization, chilled raw milk is heated by passing it between heated stainless steel plates until it reaches a minimum temperature of 161° F. It’s then held at that temperature for at least 15 seconds before it’s quickly cooled back to its original temperature of 39° F. Hiland’s pasteurization process exceeds these minimums in order to ensure a maximum bacteria kill step.

    Click here for more information about the pasteurization process.

  • Q Why is pasteurization necessary?

    Raw milk can harbor dangerous bacteria that can pose serious health risks to you and your family. The pasteurization process kills those bacteria. Many medical and scientific organizations — including the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the American Academy of Pediatrics - recommend pasteurization for all milk consumed by humans. Pregnant women are advised not to consume unpasteurized dairy and juice products because of the bacteria that may be present.

  • Q Does pasteurization change milk?

    No, pasteurization does not significantly change the nutritional value of milk. In fact, pasteurized milk provides all of milk's nutritional benefits without the risk of illness that comes with drinking raw milk. Pasteurized milk is an excellent source of calcium, protein, riboflavin, vitamins A and D, and phosphorous, and it's a good source of thiamin and B12. Many studies have shown that pasteurization has no effect on calcium absorption.

  • Q Are Hiland Dairy's milk and other products pasteurized?

    Yes, all Hiland products are either pasteurized or made from Hiland Dairy Milk, which is pasteurized. This includes Hiland Dairy Egg Nog, as we use processed and pasteurized eggs, never raw eggs. Hiland Dairy Orange Juice and Hiland Dairy Apple Juice are also pasteurized. Hiland’s pasteurization process exceeds the standard temperature and time minimums in order to ensure a maximum bacteria kill step.

  • Q What should I do with the cream on top of my milk?

    It is normal for a cream layer to form as milk settles. You can remove the layer of cream and use in coffee or for cooking purposes, or simply shake the bottle to distribute back into the milk.


  • Q Does Hiland Dairy donate products to special events?

    Yes. At Hiland Dairy, we know the importance of being a good neighbor and community member. We actively support local and regional causes, events and organizations that seek to help make our communities better places to live. Although we can't accommodate everyone, every year Hiland donates a variety of healthy, fresh dairy products to several events throughout the region.

  • Q Where can I find coupons for my favorite Hiland Dairy products?

  • Q How can Hiland Dairy assist with my local fundraising efforts?

    At Hiland Dairy, we know the importance of being a good neighbor and community member. We actively support local and regional causes, events and organizations that seek to help make our communities better places to live. Hiland donates a variety of healthy, fresh dairy products to events throughout the region.

  • Q Can you send me coupons for your products?

    Hiland Dairy is unable to honor requests for free products or coupons. Instead, we offer valuable coupons available online, (see here) and in Sunday newspaper inserts several times during the year.

  • Q My retailer won't accept the Hiland Dairy online coupons?

    Redemption of online coupons is at the sole discretion of each individual retailer. Hiland Dairy cannot guarantee online coupon redemption, or confirm participating stores; it is recommended that you verify redemption policies with your retailer(s) of choice before attempting to redeem any online coupons.

  • Q I am having trouble printing the online coupons?

    We strive to provide only the best services for our loyal customers and we are pleased to offer you a variety of printable online coupons. However, due to the complexities associated with individual computer systems, printers and Internet browsers, we are unable to offer any technical support regarding issues with the printing of online coupons.

    A few general suggestions:

    • Make sure you have created an account at hilanddairy.com/coupons and are logged in
    • Make sure your printer is properly connected
    • Make sure you disable any pop-up blockers
    • Make sure you are set up to print at "best" quality

    If you are still experiencing trouble, please contact your Internet service provider and/or consult the owner's manual of your computer or printer for further assistance.

  • Q What if I forgot my username or password?

    If you are trying to access the Members Only Login Area of our website, but have forgotten your username or password, click here and enter your email address. A new password will be emailed to you shortly.

Business Inquiries

  • Q Will Hiland Dairy make a delivery to my small business?

    To contact a sales representative in your area, please submit your request here.

  • Q What should I do if my milk delivery did not come?

    To contact a sales representative in your area, please submit your request here.


  • Q Can I apply for employment online?

    For employment opportunities, please visit our Careers page. You may also contact the Hiland Dairy location of your choice or the local State Department of Employment Security. Applications are accepted only if there is a current job opening. Hiland Dairy Foods Company is an equal opportunity employer.

  • Q What positions is Hiland currently hiring for?

    For employment opportunities, you may contact the Hiland Dairy location of your choice or the local State Department of Employment Security. Applications are accepted only if there is a current job opening. Please do not contact Hiland Dairy via this website regarding employment opportunities.

  • Q Is Hiland Dairy milk local?

    Yes. Our milk comes from our farmer-owners — with most of them located within 100 miles of each of our 11 plants in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma.

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