Milk. We drink it; we cook with it; we even use it for beauty treatments. Milk is a food staple that continues to increase in cost. Being a farmer’s daughter, I want the farmer to get a fair price for his product, so it is a shame that the middle man gets the lion’s share of the money. Perhaps one day soon, we can cut out the middle man. In some locations across the country, people may be able to buy safe, fresh milk from the farmer, but it is a rare thing to find where I live.
If we do not have access to milk straight from the farm, then our choices are limited to what may be found at the local supermarket. I’ve not been able to adapt to using soy or almond milk yet, so I am still looking for good ole cow’s milk. That leaves me with a choice of more traditional store-bought milk or certified organic milk. Is the organic milk worth the extra cost?
Nutritionist Gay Riley, MS, RD, CCN, NASM-CPT, in response to a question on her website http://www.netnutrionist.com, cites a study conducted that concludes organic milk is more beneficial than regular milk. To quote Riley, “The Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research, in Aberystwyth, found that the Organic milk contained two-thirds more Omega 3 essential fatty acids compared to the ordinary white stuff. (Click here to read her whole response.) Riley also quotes Dr. Richard Dewhurst, based on a study printed on the National Website of Wales as follows: “Our previous research has shown that milk from cows fed clover can contain up to 240% more Omega-3 fatty acids than milk from cows fed grass and concentrates. Organic dairy farmers feed much higher levels of clover because they use it as an alternative to using synthetic chemical fertilizers to ensure lush pastures.” (View the same article response on Riley website linked above.) Riley states that she buys organic milk for her own family.
Karen Collins, R. D. has an article published August 25, 2006 on nbc.com highlighting the fact that USDA certified organic milk may not contain antibiotics and the cows’ feed must be grown pesticide free. (Click here to read the whole article.)
When it comes to cost, organic milk is more expensive at the point of purchase; however, I am here to testify that the extra cost is not only worth it for the health benefits; it is also worth it in terms of budget. Before our family began purchasing organic milk, should it not be drunk in less than a week, we were lucky to have it still be good to drink after a week. Sometimes it would last less than week after opening regardless of expiration date. Organic milk, which we have been purchasing for years, consistently will last almost a month after being opened. Going three to four weeks from the time it is opened until it must be dumped, if not used, is amazing! It is usually used completely, though.
Unless the kids are visiting us, a half-gallon of organic milk is about all we need per month. I pay between $3.48 – $3.98 for a half-gallon of organic milk. If I were to purchase a half-gallon of the regular milk, it would cost me about $2 (being conservative), but it would only last a week after opening, if lucky. That means I would have to buy 4 half gallons of regular milk at a cost of about $8/month where one half-gallon or organic milk lasts the whole time. I save at least $4 per month using organic milk, and I get the health benefits. For me, this is a win – win situation.
Have you tried using organic milk? If not, are you willing to give it a try?
Have a blessed and happy day!