ST. CLOUD -- St. Cloud Hospital has opened the first milk depot in central Minnesota.

The depot acts as a receiving center for breast milk that is then stored at and distributed from a milk bank in Golden Valley.

Milk Depot Coordinator Jeanne Friebe is a Lactation Resources RN at the St. Cloud Hospital Family Birthing Center. She says the milk will go to benefit premature and at-risk infants in hospitals across the state, country, and even internationally.

[We have] more and more premature infants surviving, but their little old premature gut really has a hard time with processing, digesting, tolerating the use of cow’s milk or formula. Human milk does wonderful things and it really prevents a lot of health problems for the baby.

Less than 25 of the 50 states currently have established milk bank systems. Friebe  says there are many reasons to donate milk.

You know there’s lots of reasons people donate, but sometimes it helps them get through a situation like maybe a loss, helps them through that process. Some women just make a lot of milk and don’t want to throw it away. There’s all sorts of things like that.

For more information on donor requirements, you can check out the Minnesota milk bank website using the link below: