Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Organic Milk Shortage? Try Traditional Milk

I’ve seen several news stories lately about the shortage of organic milk. It appears that soaring organic feed costs have decreased the supply of organic milk. People in some regions are not able to find organic milk on the store shelves and if it is available, the price has increased due to the shortfall.

As I read a post by a fellow dairy blogger Emily Zweber, Zweber Family Farm News, Organic Milk Shortage, Why is it Happening? I could relate to what the organic farmers are going through; high feed costs make it difficult to be profitable. Traditional dairy farmers are facing the same feed cost issues. “2011 is the highest for dairy feed costs since we began keeping records,” says Jim Dunn, professor of agricultural economics at Pennsylvania State University.

I wish all dairy farmers, organic and traditional, were paid more for the milk they produce. We are all dealing with purchasing very expensive corn, hay, soybean meal and other feedstuffs (the result of increased demand for corn for ethanol). As traditional milk producers, we face many of the same challenges organic producers deal with. We are all dairy farmers who care for our cows with the goal of producing a quality product.

If there's no organic milk available at your grocery store or you don't want to pay $8/gallon for milk, I hope you'll purchase traditional milk. I can assure you traditionally produced milk is healthy, nutritious and comes from well cared for cows that live on family farms. I would rather you choose cow's milk than a non-dairy beverage like soy or almond. Check out my blog It's Not Milk

Our cows walking from the barn to the milking parlor
I understand you want to feed your family quality food because I want the same for my family. I recognize you want to know the animals that produced your milk are well cared for. As a dairy producer, I’m confident to tell you traditional and organic dairy producers give excellent care to their animals. Both provide quality feed, fresh water, comfortable housing, and medical care as necessary. Both traditional and organic milk must go through the same tests for quality and safety before reaching the store shelf.

Here’s what fellow dairy bloggers say about organic and traditional milk:

Liz and Amy, Two Maids a Milking, So, what kind of milk do you drink?

Nancy Grossi, The Wife of a Dairyman, Organic vs Conventional Dairy Farms 

Dino Giacomazzi, Dairy farmer, What's the difference between organic and regular milk? 

I’ve also written a few blogs on the topic:
Milk is Milk - The Comparison
What’s the Difference between Traditional “Regular” Milk and Organic Milk? 

It’s important to remember milk is milk. When you purchase milk, you support family dairy farmers. Thank you!


  1. Excellent post, Brenda. And I only buy regular milk. Thank you for providing it.

  2. Good post. Milk is milk. We get very frustrated at "facts" hyped at the consumer by people, who frankly, don't know what they're talking about. Nicely and politely written

  3. You hit the nail on the head as to the reason for high feed costs. We need to realize the ethanol scam (sorry to those farmers who benefit from the subsidies) and call a spade a spade. This waste of time and resources has now affected the entire supply chain with higher prices and lower supply. When we are honest with ourselves about why things are the way they are, we all benefit. I wish you success and prosperity in your business- and I wish you luck.

  4. What a great post! I'm curious to know your perspective on something that's been bothering me for quite some time. You've just written one of the most socially responsible, fact filled bit on conventional and organic milk I've ever read. I get so frustrated with organic companies trying to brainwash consumers. They use hot button words such as antibiotics, chemicals, GMO's, not natural, synthetic, engineered. They have spent countless hours and dollars lying to the public and hurting family owned, conventional dairies. I believe all dairy farmers work hard. I believe all family farms should be supported and valued be they organic or conventional. All milk is safe and healthy. I am frustrated and annoyed at organic propaganda and lies. They have vilified conventional farming and farmers. they know the facts about milk, just like you and I. Why continue to spread lies and fear. Why work so hard to hurt conventional farms and families?

  5. Thank you for the comment. You pose a good question. I believe the answer comes down to economics. Companies who sell organic food must convince consumers those products are better than their conventional counterparts. Why else would someone pay two or three times more for the same product?

    Most families can’t afford to purchase expensive organic food. I want other Moms to know they don’t have to buy organic to get a good quality, nutritious and safe product produced by a family farm. They don’t have to feel guilt for choosing traditionally produced food. I trust it 100% and that’s all I feed my own family.

  6. Brenda

    You did a nice job with adding links with in your content. I like your reference links from other Dairy Producers at the bottom.

    I think cross referencing is a good way to back up your research and make dairy producers more real to the non-ag population. Maybe if they read it more than once and see pictures of healthy cows our ag stories will become more real to them.


Thank you for reading my blog and taking the time to comment! I’m opening the doors of our farm to share with you and enjoy engaging in discussion. Please be respectful in your comments. I reserve the right to remove posts that include name calling, slander, and vulgar language or contain links to websites that assault animal agriculture.

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