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Monday, August 6, 2012

Farm Fresh Milk from your Pygmy Goats to the Family Table


Farm Fresh Milk from your Pygmy Goats to the Family Table
by: Amber Waves

Sure, you probably already know that African pygmy goats make oh-so-cute, friendly, and entertaining pets, but did you realize they can also help you become more self-sufficient? Pygmy goats can supply you with deliciously sweet milk, which will save you money at the grocery store. Their milk will also be much fresher than anything you can buy there! People who don’t typically like the taste of cow’s milk have been known to love the unique flavor of goat’s milk, so it’s a good way help picky eaters get some much needed calcium and protein. In fact, goat’s milk contains about 13% more calcium per serving than cow’s milk! And if that weren’t enough, milking your pygmy goats provides an opportunity to teach any little ones you have around where their food really comes from.

When you choose to milk your pygmy goats, you have direct control over the healthfulness of the milk and dairy products you feed your family. Many large milk producers provide their animals with subpar feed and inject them with hormones and other drugs. This will negatively affect the quality of the milk. Not to mention that many of these factory farm animals are not treated well. However, you know what you feed your animals and you know if they have received medicines (orally or injectable) recently. You have the power to provide your family with truly organic, fresh milk from animals that you raise.

Don’t let pygmy goat’s small stature fool you! A lactating doe can produce quite a bit of milk. At the peak of lactation, does will give you up to 2/3 gallon each day. Even at a quart per day outside her peak, one doe will be supplying you with almost two gallons of milk per week! Raw milk kept in the refrigerator will maintain its flavor and freshness for about 14 days. Of course, most people prefer drinking pasteurized milk so they know that any microbes or bacteria present in the raw milk has been killed. To begin pasteurizing your goat’s milk, place the raw milk in a pot over medium heat on the stove. Put a thermometer into the milk to ensure the milk reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Maintain that temperature for 30 minutes. Pour the milk into airtight containers and refrigerate them right away. If you are unable to pasteurize right after milking your goat, that is ok. Just be sure to keep the raw milk in the refrigerator until you are ready. Of course, there are other options for your goat’s milk! Consider making yogurt, cheese, and butter too!

Perhaps you are thinking that you or a family member are lactose intolerant or have a milk allergy so pygmy goats wouldn’t be a good fit for you. You would be wrong! The good news is, neither of these situations necessarily mean you can’t have (and enjoy) pygmy goat milk! Goat milk has long been known to have lower levels of lactose than cow’s milk. It is also more easily digested. Others with allergies to cow’s milk have found success in drinking goat’s milk because the proteins (often the cause of allergies) in cow’s milk are different from those found in goat’s milk. Of course, you should talk to your doctor before experimenting with goat’s milk if you have a milk allergy, but know that many people are now able to consume milk and other dairy products because they switched to goat milk!

If raising pygmy goats, becoming more self-sufficient, and providing your family with healthy, fresh goat’s milk sounds like something you would be interested in, contact Amber Waves today for more information about purchasing and raising African pygmy goats. These easy to care for pets will provide your family with years of companionship and delicious milk, and Amber Waves will provide you with lifetime support so you will always have access to expert pygmy goat advice. Welcome to the wonderful world of pygmy goats!

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