Ethical milk – which brand to buy?

There’s a feeling “out there” in the Twitterverse that milk aint what it used to be. So, what to choose?

The first piece of good news is that there’s lots you don’t need to worry about. Growth hormones are illegal on Australian dairy farms for a start. Free range cows are also the norm (I haven’t seen a housed herd in Australia and wouldn’t even know where to find one).

Thanks to what raw-milk advocates often call Australia’s “ridiculously stringent” food safety laws, you can be confident your dairy foods are safe for even your most frail family members; the Chinese melamine disaster won’t happen here. Despite the marketing campaigns of a large multinational corporation, permeate (check my all about permeate post to find out more) is also safe and nutritious.

If want farmers to receive a fair price for milk, you can still shop at the big supermarkets with a clear conscience if you buy a brand-name milk. It’s even better if you can buy the Devondale brand of dairy products because they are made by the 100% farmer-owned co-op, Murray Goulburn. If you can access a farmstead brand of milk, that’s okay too. Don’t feel guilty if you can’t find or afford a farmstead brand though – very, very few dairy farmers can afford to set up a milk processing plant after all and we are grateful that you are supporting us by choosing not to buy the generic stuff.

Milk free from growth hormones

The internet is awash with scary stories about growth hormones in milk. They are said to cause cancer and even breast development in babies fed a milk-based formula. Cows injected with growth hormones are also said to have much shorter lifespans than the 12-plus years ours enjoy.

I’m happy to say I can’t offer you any insight into this bitterly debated issue. Although bovine growth hormone (BGH)  is commonly used in the US, it and BST or bovine somatotropin are outlawed here in Australia.

Every litre of Aussie milk is guaranteed to be free from growth hormones!