Question from you dairy farmers on cream in milk

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by karlamaria, Jan 21, 2012.

  1. karlamaria

    karlamaria Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 30, 2011
    Western montana
    I was told a cow who gives birth the first time does not produce much cream if any at all, is this true? I tend to believe milk from a cow will produce cream every time. Am I getting lied to? I mean is it not the cream that fattens a calf?
  2. Lothiriel

    Lothiriel Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    Aug 30, 2007
    New York State
    My Coop
    I'm not sure about first time milkers, but for our 5 year old Jersey, the highest cream content of the milk is right after she calves. She holds back most of the cream for her baby and the little bugger seems to grow in front of your eyes, while you get "skinny milk" with very little cream, but once you start weaning (or if you bottle feed the calf) you will most definitely get cream. It is not uncommon for us to get at least 3 inches of cream on a gallon, and Daisy calved last June.

    Often the amount of cream varies based on the cow's diet and/or her heat cycle (I've heard that when a cow goes into heat she gives less milk and it's not as creamy), and that her production will also drop when she is bred. That could affect how much cream you get.
  3. cassie

    cassie Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 19, 2009
    That is just silly. First fresheners do not produce skim milk. How much cream (butterfat percentage) a cow or a goat produces has nothing to do with what lactation it is. Butterfat percentage is influenced by stage of lactation, diet, and genetics. Also, while you are milking a cow, the first milk you draw is lower in butterfat than the last. Strippings are very high in butterfat.
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey

    X 2
  5. EweSheep

    EweSheep Flock Mistress

    Jan 12, 2007
    Land of Lincoln
    x3 That is what I heard in vet classes.
  6. HCFarms96

    HCFarms96 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 19, 2011
    I know goats are different and goat's milk has less cream than cow's milk, but anyway. Our doe is a first freshener, when the milk is about a week old there's an inch of cream on top. Cow's milk has much more cream, but it's not all that different, so I can't see how you wouldn't get any cream from it.
  7. PotterWatch

    PotterWatch My Patronus is a Chicken

    Apr 22, 2008
    It's really not any different than people. A woman who has a baby for the first time still produces pretty much the same milk that she would after having her fourth baby. Milk is always the most "rich" near the end of any milking session. The first milk to be released is called "foremilk" and the last milk is called "hindmilk", but both contain fat or cream, just in different amounts. As someone else said, the quality of the milk is definitely influenced by diet and where in the lactation, the animal is. Milk is more rich shortly after the baby is born and will become increasingly less fatty as the baby gets older and needs less of its nourishment from its mother.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2012
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I agree. Hogwash. Different things will affect cream content, but whether that is her first of second calf is not one of them. Breed is really important. A jersey or guernsey will produce a lot more cream than a holstein per gallon of milk, though the holstein will produce a lot more gallons. The dairies around where I grew up had mostly holsteins for the volume, but they kept one or two jerseys to get the milkfat content of the herd average up. They got a better price per gallon that way.

    You don't need a purebreed, but I think any milk cow that is used for milk for personal cosumption should have some jersey or guernsey in it for the increased milkfat content. But that is just my prejudice.

    The milk produced a day or two after a cow gives birth is different, but that is after any birth, not just her first. It has special disease preventatives for the calf.

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