IS OUR MILK FREE FROM HORMONE, ANTIBIOTICS, CHEMICALS? WHAT DO WE FEED OUR GIRLS?
First of all, about 45% of our cows’ diet is freshly cut grass, 20% corn silage, which is fermented fresh whole corn plants that still have corn on the cob attached.
Another 15% is green bean shell, 15% compound feed and the remaining rice straw.
We grow the grass and corn plants right on our farm, which is by the river, covering an area of approximately 60,000 square meters (645,835 square feet).
From the start our goal has always been to be self-sufficient and self-sustainable as much as possible. With plenty of water from the river and cow manure, there is no need for us to use artificial fertilisers or pesticide for these crops.
We don’t use bovine growth hormone to increase milk production. Why? It is the quality, not quantity of milk that we aim for.
If we were after the latter, we’d have chosen the HF breed (black & white cows), which yields as much as 50% more milk but its milk quality is inferior to that of our Jersey’s.
In order to sell our products, we are legally required to have them tested according to relevant standards set out by the Ministry of Health. Standards for milk specifically list a number of antibiotics and their maximum residues that are allowed to still be present in the final product. For example, two common antibiotics, BENZYLPENICILLIN & TETRACYCLIN have an MRV of 4 & 100 ug/kg respecively (1ug = 0.001mg).
Our lab reports show that those two, as well as other antibiotics, are not detected in our milk and other dairy products. Even without having them tested, we can be pretty sure about their absence because they are not used in the first place.
When they must be used, we won’t use the milk from the cow treated with such substances for an extended period of time. We’ve been careful from the beginning with our breed selection and farm design in order to avoid the use of drugs as much as possible.
We think that in this day and age it is extremely hard to guarantee products to be chemical free and we generally don’t buy in such claims. The reason is that in our opinion, the only way to be absolutely sure that something is chemical free is to not use chemicals in the first place.
However, we can’t produce everything that goes into growing our food. For example, we need to source green bean shell and straw from somewhere else. Although these inputs have to comply with relevant food safety standards, there is some leeway in the standards which permits the presence of chemical residues.
While we don’t want to claim that our milk is chemical free, we're sure that we have extremely high standards for raising our cows and making our dairy products, surpassing what is legally required.
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