Happy Cows Make Happy Milk

Organic, grassfed milk from Hilhof Dairy

Organic, grassfed milk from Hilhof Dairy

I’ve always been a milk drinker. Nothing beats a tall, cold glass of milk with a brownie, peanut butter on toast, or a chocolate chip cookie.

When I was a kid, we drank skim milk but as I became a coffee drinker, I switched to whole or two percent. For most of my adult life I don’t think I’ve been able to put less than two percent milk in my coffee until the past year, and it was really tough to get used to. When it comes to coffee (and I like mine good and strong with lots of milk), I’ll drink it black rather than put skim milk in it.

A few years ago, I switched to organic milk when I switched to other organic foods. But after reading The Omnivore’s Dilemma, I realized organic milk does not necessarily mean happy milk. The cows may still be living in a factory environment, eating grain instead of grass. That’s when Bill noticed the glass bottles of milk from Hilhof Dairy  at Nature’s Market in Holland. (Harvest Health Foods carries them as well.)

Hilhof Dairy is located in Hersey, Michigan–96 miles from Holland. You pay a deposit on their bottle, just like in the old days. Hilhof offers skim milk, two percent milk, whole milk, and cream. According to a brochure I picked up at Summertime Market, none of their products are homogenized. And, “when cream is left in its natural state…it is more easily digestible.” Plus, as everyone knows, organic grassfed milk is higher in omega 3’s than non-organic milk. (More about this from Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food at a later date.)

According to farmers William and Connie Straathof, their philosophy is “that healthy soil produces healthy food, and healthy food produces healthy animals and people.” Michael Pollan himself couldn’t have said it better.

Cheers to Hilhof Dairy for delivering dairy products 96 miles away so we can enjoy organic milk from 100% grassfed cows.


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