The best milk you’ve never had

From the Barre Monpelier Times Argus.com

Photo via Barre Montpelier Times Argus.

“On a sunny May Saturday — one which promised to be a good day at the market — I found myself instead walking down a forested path in Shrewsbury. I wanted to take a pointed look at what was not at the market or, more precisely, what was banned from the market. My quest took me to Tangled Roots Farm, and the path led me to an open pasture where goats happily grazed.

Tangled Roots Farm is a diverse, beginning farm run by Lucas Jackson and Maeve Mangine. Nestled into the lush, forested hills of Shrewsbury, the farm sits on 110 acres that Maeve’s family has owned — un-farmed — for years. When you drive up, there’s a long-neglected orchard that Lucas is clearing and replanting. Farther down, stacks of logs sit in the woods waiting for shiitake mushrooms to appear. Cross the dirt road, and you’re back at the goat pasture and the real reason why I visited the farm: raw milk.

Raw milk is simply unpasteurized milk, but it’s a lightning rod for controversy. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is strongly against it, pointing out that three people have died in the last 23 years from illnesses traced back to raw milk. Yet, Vermonters, especially those from dairy families, have been drinking raw milk for generations. Advocates point out that raw milk is fresher, tastier and a way to support small dairy farmers that cannot afford expensive pasteurization machinery.

Without a doubt, big dairy farms need pasteurization to protect their customers and prevent disease. Large herds mean less individual attention and more sanitation concerns.

In contrast, Lucas and Maeve have a much more intimate operation. When Maeve walks into the goat pasture, her herd of goats flocks to her and nuzzles against her side. She knows each by name and can describe their individual quirks and attitudes. In the mornings and evenings, she milks the mama goats by hand in a meticulously clean milking shelter complete with tracking charts and daily measurements….”

Read more in the Times Argus.

3 Comments

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3 responses to “The best milk you’ve never had

  1. Welcome to reality. There are lots of things I can’t sell at the local farmers market. Some due to the local health county health Nazi’s that throw so many absurd economic barriers in the way that I have given up trying to sell my healthy and wholesome organic fermented vegetables.

    The other barrier to selling at the farmers market is the market itself. In this area they are ALL a good ol’ boys clubs where those that founded it and got in early have the right to sell all the easy to grow and high profit vegetables. Any small grower like myself is just told that I can’t sell most of what I grow.

    Seems in many respects that “we” are no better than “them.” Freedom and liberty are a foreign concept to most men these sad dark days.

  2. nedlud

    Looks like a target for a drone hit. Get them up to 21st century speed…

    At least, though, they’re ‘meticulously clean’. So that’s a plus for today’s ever wiser and smarter, and increasingly demanding shopper/consumer…..

    For we all know dirt and manure in any place other than approved ‘safety containers’ (ie;, officially designated production fields, registered as such {and kept under constant watchful surveillance, another reason for drones} with the proper authorities and solidly constructed manure pits, also registered as such) is EXTREMELY DANGEROUS. God help us all if we get e-coli. We know who to blame.

    Keep things ultra-sanitary and watch those skies!

    nedlud

    • nedlud

      p.s. The other day I watched as a couple of our goats, actually ripped off, chewed and swallowed parts of the plastic tarp that was covering a firewood stack. They really do try to eat almost anything, sometimes with -uhh- success.

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