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.




#farm365 (COM0011 – Blog Post #5)


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

Have you ever wondered what happens on a farm? What does a farmer do in his everyday routine? Well then meet Andrew Campbell a dairy farmer and Founder of Fresh Air Media from southwestern Ontario.

Fresh A1297651469586_ORIGINALir Media is dedicated to educating and informing the agriculture and food sectors about upcoming communication and marketing tools, as well as new trends in technology.
Like many people Andrew made a new years resolution, his resolution is that he would post a pictures of his daily life on the farm every day on his twitter account using the hashtag #farm365 with the goal of helping consumers make the connection from farm to plate.

To follow along you can follow Andrew on Twitter @FreshAirFarmer or the hashtag #farm365

Like Andrew many farmers are using social media to educate the public on the daily happenings on the farm and to show the public where their food comes from.

The Peterson Family in front of their family farm!

Greg, Nathan, and Kendal Peterson better known as the Peterson Farm Bros. on YouTube are known for their agriculture-focused video parodies of popular hit songs. Other videos the brothers have made are informational videos, entertainment videos and their “Life of a Farmer” documentaries. the Life of a Farmer series is split in to 12 videos one for each month of the year, and is about what life on the farm is like. As well as their videos the brothers opened their farm last year on select Saturdays in the summer for a farm tour. For more info on tour dates for this year click here.

Although Andrew started the #farm365 hashtag many other farmers and agricultural advocates including myself have joined in, But since you can not own a hashtag it has allowed for animal rights activists to hijacked the #farm365 hashtag and use it to spreed their own message.

One thing I hear all the time from animal rights activists is that farmers abuse their animals. Yes there are some cases of animal abuse, but a lot of the time what looks like a farmer being mean is for the better of the animal. I know a lot of farmers that care a lot about there animals.

One of my favorite blog posts on this subject is by dairycarrie in her post titled Sometimes we are mean to our cows Carrie talks about a down cow and what has to be done to get the cow up.

What do you think of the #farm365 hashtag? Is using social media to open the barn door a good Idea?