About the time I was 11 or 12 years of age, around 1977, my Dad purchased our first milk cow. She was a Jersey, light tan in color. With the help of some of our church people, we built a small, 3 sided barn. The barn was multi-purpose; in it we milked, fed, and housed the cow. Later we added a small pen adjacent to the south side of the barn for calves.
This cow began my experience in the dairy industry. The high point of my experiences was when we were milking about 60 head of cattle. Probably the climax of the experience was when I managed the sale of the dairy herd for my father about 20 years later.
How to Milk a Cow
There are several ways to milk a cow. When I began my dairy experience, I was milking cows by hand. Later, when we opened the dairy, we purchased a cow milking machine. Whatever way, I knew that every day, twice a day, I had to milk the cow.
Once my family began our foray into the dairy industry, we began to see some of the positive benefits of having fresh cows milk available to us. After purchasing that first cow, we added several more so that my dad and I were milking somewhere from two to ten cows. At this point, we sold milk and butter to help subsidize our dairy hobby. I am still not convinced that at that point it was a profitable venture. My mother would be tasked with churning butter by hand, then molding it, and even delivering and selling the butter. It was very labor intensive.
However, we did have lots of fresh cows milk available. We would have gallons of milk in our refrigerator. The cream would rise to the top of the gallon jugs. Sometimes, the cream would be two-thirds of the jug. One thing I found from this experience was that if you put real, straight cream on your corn flakes, you did not need sweetner.
Stay with me on this blog to learn more about dairy cows, the industry, milking and related topics.