Sunday 28 June 2015 5.03pm
I have been drinking, and cooking with, raw milk for close to a year, and I have experienced the benefits of this natural product. Previously, I had to avoid dairy due to an intolerance I developed as a result of many years of consuming non organic, pasteurised milk. My gut suffered as a result, and I became unable to tolerate even a small glass of milk or a slice of cheese. I was of course devastated by this realisation; I loved dairy, especially cheese! However, for my health (particularly my gut), I decided that it was best to simply remove dairy from my diet. Instead, I drank alternative ‘milks’ such as rice and coconut. Though the latter was pleasant enough (and I love coconut products), they never could compare to cows’ milk, which I sorely missed.
After reading more about health and nutrition, I came across many articles about the benefits of consuming raw, organic, milk. I was intrigued by this, especially after reading claims of people with dairy intolerances, like myself, being able to drink milk and eat butter again. I searched online for a retailer of raw milk and I learnt that currently, it may only be sold directly by the farmer or by milk rounds(wo)men.
I am happy to write that I no longer have intolerances after eating dairy; I even make raw yoghurt and raw Kefiran (the milk fermented by Kefir) and my gut has improved due to the beneficial bacteria. A friend of mine who had been lactose intolerant for years also found that her problem vanished when she started drinking raw milk. There are many others with similar stories. I believe that it was the pasteurised milk (particularly from cows fed hormones and routinely given antibiotics, which I in turn would drink) that caused my intolerance because it removed the ‘good bacteria’ and replaced it with the bad.
If you are interested in learning more about raw milk and its benefits here are a couple of links: http://www.raw-milk-facts.com/raw_milk_health_benefits.html
This is a link to information about Kefir: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kefir
Currently, I buy raw milk weekly from a farm based in the country, and their milk and cream are delicious. However, as a result of the costs incurred by running a raw dairy farm, as well as the distribution of their products, their milk is quite expensive at £3 for 2 pints (they do not sell their milk in gallons, but I’m sure you can tell that it would be extremely expensive). While their milk is indeed lovely and creamy, their prices are not affordable for many, especially, if like my family, they drink/use a lot of milk each week.
I thought that there must be other farmers willing to sell their grass fed, organic, cow/sheep/goat raw milk (at a more affordable price), so I searched online for farms in London, and I was amazed and impressed to learn that there are 14 urban city farms. All of them have at least goats and sheep, while others also have cows. I think that with this number of farms in the capital, there would be some willing to sell their milk.
Running a farm in London is expensive, and much of the funding farms received in the past has been vastly cut; they are now largely reliant on the support of the local community and visitors in the form of donations and animal adoption/sponsorship. If they were to also sell their raw milk, this would be another source of revenue for them to help meet the costs of caring for their animals.
I am looking for people who currently, or would like to, drink raw milk and be able to buy it at an affordable price, here in London. I would like to start a ‘raw milk cooperative’, where as a group, we buy raw milk directly from a London farm. This would mean we handle the collection and distribution of the milk, leaving the farm with little to do other than provide us with fresh, raw milk.
I was given the inspiration for this after reading about a raw milk cooperative in America. This group order their milk from a local farm, and members take it in turns to collect it and then bring the milk to a central location (or a member’s home) where the others can pick up their weekly order. I think that this could work well in London, considering how many farms there are, and with the growing demand for raw milk.
If you are interested, would like to be part of this cooperative, or have any questions, please do send me a message.
Thank you for reading!