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Last milkman in WNY seeing a surge of customers due to pandemic

Hoover's Dairy still makes home delivery after 100 years
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Posted at 5:09 PM, Mar 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-23 14:11:53-04

SANBORN, N.Y. (WKBW) — Hoover's Dairy in Sanborn, NY is the last milkman service in Western New York. The company was started in 1920, by Edwin Hoover, and has served a large portion of Niagara County during the last 100 years.

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It is seeing a big surge in new customers as people are home-bound during the coronavirus covid-19 national health emergency.

"It makes me feel good that we are still able to do it," said Bob Hoover. The 72-year-old was out making deliveries with his 20-year-old grandson, Robbie. "It's been sort of crazy and a little stressful with all the customers picking up a lot," added Robbie Hoover.

The dairy told 7 Eyewitness News Reporter Ed Reilly that it is still able to take new customers for home delivery. People should call (716) 731-3822 to enroll.

While it is great to be needed, Robert Hoover II said it is unfortunate that it involves the covid-19 crisis. "You hate to see this problem happen, and I hope we don't see this again."

Hoover's has expanded its product line over the years and now delivers a wide variety of food items besides milk, chocolate milk, and strawberry milk. "They don't have to worry about going to the store or being out of milk," explained Robert Hoover.

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In order to keep customers and workers safe, the dairy will drop off the ordered products in a milk box, garage, or other containers - to minimize individuals coming in contact with each other.

Hoover's does home delivery in most of Niagara County including Wheatfield, Lewiston, Cambria, Newfane, Pendleton, and Town of Niagara.

The 100-year-old dairy still uses glass bottles. During this time of high-demand, it is reminding customers to please return the empties.

Will it be able to keep up with demand? "I think so," said Robert Hoover.

The neighborhood milkman was a fixture across American for much of the 20th Century.

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Image courtesy of The Library of Congress

Robert Hoover said the pandemic has some dairy farms in New England thinking about re-starting home delivery service. Hoover said he was not aware of any others locally who were considering doing the same thing.