Got Milk? From Cow to cup

Have you ever wondered how the milk you buy at the store got there?

In order for the milk to get to the store for you to buy it, it most go through many steps.
To start producing milk a dairy cow needs to freshen(A milk cow freshens after she has calved) .

Once a cow starts producing milk, she will get milked 2-3 times a day with a machine called a milker  The milk is then pumped to a big cooler that will keep the milk cool until it is picked up by the milk man.

On most farms the milk gets picked up every other day by an insulated transport tanker that will take the milk to a dairy processing plant. The milk is tested before it is loaded on to the truck and again at the processing plant to make sure it meets strict quality and sanitation regulations. If  the quality of the milk does not meet proper quality standards the farmer will face heavy penalties and/or fines.

Once at the dairy processing plant milk undergoes pasteurization, homogenization, separation and further processing.

Pasteurization machine

Pasteurization: The act or process of heating a food, especially a beverage such as milk or beer, to a specific temperature for a specific period of time in order to kill microorganisms that could cause disease, spoilage, or undesired fermentation. 


Homogenization machine

Homogenization: Involves pushing the raw milk through an atomizer to form tiny particles so that the fat is dispersed evenly throughout the milk, stopping the fat from floating to the top of the container.

Separation: Involves spinning milk through a centrifuge to separate the cream from the milk. After separation, the cream and remaining milk are remixed to provide the desired fat content for the different types of milk being produced.
For “whole milk,” the cream is reintroduced until the fat content reaches 3.25%. For “low fat milk,” the fat content is 1%. For “skim milk” (sometimes called nonfat milk) the fat content is .05%.
Machine for filtering and further processing

Further processing: Includes micro-filtration, increasing the storage life by ultra high temperature (UHT) treatment, and  mixing or culturing milk for flavored and yogurt products.

Once the milk has gone through all its processing it is ready to be packaged and shipped to the store, the milk is kept in a big cooler at the store until you buy it and take it home to enjoy.

(http://milk.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=000658)

(http://www.thefreedictionary.com/pasteurization)

Advertisements

Misconceptions in agriculture (COM0011 – Blog Post #6)

B6i0L3iCMAAFKdL

Thank you to Chrissie Laymon for the use of her photo. You can follow Chrissie on Twitter @the_farm_life.

In my last post I talked about #farm365 and how farmers are opening their barn doors to the public by using social media. In this post I am going to stay on the agriculture topic, but shift the focus to some lies and misconceptions I see and hear all the time.

The first one, I talk about a little in my last post #farm365 (COM0011 – Blog Post #5).
All the time I hear people talk about farmers abusing their cows or other animals. I find this funny as one adult cow is worth over $2,000 each (more than I payed for my car). Do you really think someone would want to hurt something that is worth that much? I will admit that I have hit a cow, but it was for the better of the cow. In a blog post by Dairycarrie titled Sometimes we are mean to our cows, she talked about a downed cow and how sometimes being mean to them by slapping them or using a cattle prod is for their own health.

Another misconception that I see all the time, is PETA and other animal rights groups take a photo or video and editing it to say something other than what is really happening. About a week ago, there was an article going around my Facebook feed called Why I am an Anti-PETA Activist by by M-K Jones. In the post on her blog she tells us about a recently ad put out on the PETA Facebook page using the photo shown below.

There is just one problem with this ad, if you know anything about sheep you would know that this is a Suffolk which is raised for meat, not wool. A few years back, I worked on a sheep farm and just like when you get a haircut if you move well getting it cut you might get nicked with the clippers, same goes for the sheep when they get Sheared.

Back in August 2014 PETA posted a video about a dairy farm in North Carolina, where they claim that the cows are forced to live in their own waste. Dairycarrie also wrote a blog post about this titled PETA’s Undercover North Carolina Dairy Farm Video.

Now if you look at this screenshot from the video you can see that their legs are dirty, But if you look closer you will see that they have clean tails and clean bellies which goes to show that they are well cared for as every cow I have seen has had at least a little bit of dirt on their tail/belly. My guess is that in this photo the cows were being moved to another part of the farm but run through this area. Make sure to read the blog post as Carrie goes on point out other problems with the video.

The 2 stories above are some examples of PETA and other animal rights groups trying to tell you lies about what is really happening.

The last example I am going to show you is a common one I see all the time. Can you spot which photo has beef calves in it and which photos dairy calves?

Photo #1

Photo #2

Photo #3

Photo #2 is the beef calves and Photos #1 & #3 are dairy calves. PETA likes to use photo like #1 but say that they are beef calves and think that they can get away with it.


How do you feel about PETA and other animal rights groups spreading misleading and inaccurate information?