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7HL
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:33 AM
What do you think?

from:http://news.bbc.co.uk/cbbcnews/hi/newsid_4530000/newsid_4537400/4537499.stm


Horse milk trots onto the menu

Horse's milk could soon be available to pour over your cereal, according to a horse farm in Belgium that has started selling it across the world.

The farm milks 60 horses on a regular basis, and says its milk-mad customers can't get enough of it.

The healthy drink, which is low in fat and high in vitamins, is sold as a tasty alternative to cow's milk.

The milk, described as sweet, thin and watery, is also made into tablets, shampoo and creams to treat eczema.

Would you buy it? Drink it?

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:35 AM
I've never bought it but drank it from my own to try. It tastes good has a real sweet taste to it like the article says the meat from horses is also sweet tasting. Not sure why that is for both?

RunningwaterWBs
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:39 AM
Great -- a new way to produce orphan foals. :(

sk_pacer
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:55 AM
Saw something about this on some show on the Food Network - maybe The F Word?? at any rate, it got the approval of the host and was duly tried in a custard and the result was proclaimed tasty, different than with cows milk but good anyway.

I am not sure why it would produce orphans as they only milk the mares once a day, and only after the foals start eating 'real' food and are not totally dependant om momma for all sustenance. it would be the same as a milk cow - complete access to momma for the first 10-14 days, then share the milk.

Ghazzu
Feb. 8, 2009, 11:34 AM
Hmm. Can commercially available kumiss be far behind? :D

RunningwaterWBs
Feb. 8, 2009, 12:08 PM
I am not sure why it would produce orphans as they only milk the mares once a day, and only after the foals start eating 'real' food and are not totally dependant om momma for all sustenance. it would be the same as a milk cow - complete access to momma for the first 10-14 days, then share the milk.
I have no idea how this equine milking industry is set up, but I don't see how it could be cost-efficient if the mares are only milked once a day. Do you know what kind of mares are used? I'm imagining a very similar situation to PMU foals; mares bred for size (the bigger the mare, the bigger the udder), a lack of selective breeding, and foals as by-products. Granted, this is completely my conjecture. If someone can show me sources/ examples of how these businesses are run, please do.

I worked on a dairy farm for two years. The calves were never allowed to nurse. They were usually separated from the cow before they even got up (they take a long time to get up, much longer than foals) when the cow was put right back into the herd. The milk from the fresh cow isn't put in the tank (to be sold) until after the colostrum is gone, so that's separated and fed to the vealers/ calves via bottles or buckets. Maybe dairy farmers near you do things differently, but I can tell you the above is common practice in New England.

I share this not to be argumentatitve but rather to clarify things. I'd like to know how the horse milking industry is set up. Does anyone have any real experience with it here?

Alagirl
Feb. 8, 2009, 12:10 PM
hm, I do believe, horse milk is in some basic ways very similar to human milk (read that a long time ago)

I don't think I would want it over cereal, but then again I don't drink much milk anyhow. I had canned goats milk once, which tasted like a goat smells...so horse should not be as bad.

Horse milk is being used already, in cosmetics/natural remedies as well as in specialty nutrition. My Mom had bought it for my sister when she was battling cancer.


I think the breed of choice is Hafflinger....

Coreene
Feb. 8, 2009, 01:54 PM
They use Haflingers, it is very humane, and it is used quite a lot in Holland and Belgium. An uncle and aunt both drink it; their doctor recommended it. Can't remember which ailment it was for, but they said they can feel it if for some reason they don't drink it for a few days.

MistyBlue
Feb. 8, 2009, 02:31 PM
Isn't there a culture that drinks fermented mare's milk?
Mare's milk sounds more palatable than when PETA was pushing Ben and Jerry's to make ice cream out of breast milk. :eek: :winkgrin:
I've never had it but I have heard that it's sweeter than cow's milk and other ruminant's milk. (goats, camels, etc)
County, maybe the difference in sweetness of milk and meat on a horse is because it's not a ruminant and we're more used to drinking from/eating mammals that have a different (and better working) digestive system? I always wondered the reason myself too...being a non-ruminant is the only difference that sticks out to me.

WorthTheWait95
Feb. 8, 2009, 02:37 PM
it would be the same as a milk cow - complete access to momma for the first 10-14 days, then share the milk.

That is definitely NOT how it works. :no: Ever been to a dairy farm? It's heartbreaking seeing those tiny calves chained to those dog house things.

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 02:38 PM
Never thought of that but very very possable certainly makes sense Misty Blue.

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 02:41 PM
I've been to dairy farms owned one also, theres about 10,000 dairy cows in this township. To me whats heartbreaking is to see dead calfs because they weren't in those hutchs that are very sanitary, warm, and have a healthy enviroment to get started in.

RedMare01
Feb. 8, 2009, 02:45 PM
Great -- a new way to produce orphan foals. :(

There wouldn't necessarily have to be orphan foals. Premarin is made from pregnant mare urine, so by default there have to be foals. Once a mare has foaled, she will continue to produce milk if milked (even if the foal is weaned). So, she wouldn't necessarily have to produce a foal every year or even every other year. Will mares continue to make milk indefinitely if milked? Not sure of the duration.

Caitlin

WorthTheWait95
Feb. 8, 2009, 03:14 PM
I've been to dairy farms owned one also, theres about 10,000 dairy cows in this township. To me whats heartbreaking is to see dead calfs because they weren't in those hutchs that are very sanitary, warm, and have a healthy enviroment to get started in.

I wasn't trying to start anything, just posted my gut reaction to seeing that. I'm by no means a vegan/vegetarian/whatever but I still find it sad to see those babies. I don't eat veal but do drink milk and am realistic enough to know it has to come from somewhere, it's still sad to me though.

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 03:17 PM
I'm not trying to start anything either just stating thats the heathiest way to raise a large number of dairy calfs. Springer dairy heifers last week were bringing $1500 to $2500 each theres no way the producers are going to allow investments like that to die without doing what ever they can to insure good health.

Alexie
Feb. 8, 2009, 03:22 PM
i think the mongolian people drank fermented horse milk?

Guilherme
Feb. 8, 2009, 03:25 PM
Isn't there a culture that drinks fermented mare's milk?
Mare's milk sounds more palatable than when PETA was pushing Ben and Jerry's to make ice cream out of breast milk. :eek: :winkgrin:
I've never had it but I have heard that it's sweeter than cow's milk and other ruminant's milk. (goats, camels, etc)
County, maybe the difference in sweetness of milk and meat on a horse is because it's not a ruminant and we're more used to drinking from/eating mammals that have a different (and better working) digestive system? I always wondered the reason myself too...being a non-ruminant is the only difference that sticks out to me.

The Mongols drank it in the time of the Great Khan and continue today. See http://www.mongolfood.info/en/recipes/ayrag.html

Apparantly it is produced commercially today as kumis but it generally made with cow's milk.

G.

Simkie
Feb. 8, 2009, 04:22 PM
I thought this was interesting:


A 1982 source reported that 230,000 horses were kept in the USSR specifically for producing milk to make into kumis.[6]

Rinchingiin Indra, writing about Mongolian dairying, says "it takes considerable skill to milk a mare" and describes the technique: the milker kneels on one knee, with a pail propped on the other, steadied by a string tied to an arm. One arm is wrapped behind the mare's rear leg and the other in front. A foal starts the milk flow and is pulled away by another person, but left touching the mare's side during the entire process.[7]

In Mongolia, the milking season for horses traditionally runs between mid-June and early October. During one season, a mare produces approximately 1,000 to 1,200 kilograms of milk, of which about half is left to the foals.[8]

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kumis

carp
Feb. 8, 2009, 04:32 PM
The technique I'm aware of is slightly different from Simkie's. Someone holds the mare's head to keep her in one place, another person holds up a front leg (using a rope or strap) to keep her from getting in a good kick with a hind, and a third person does the milking.

Coreene
Feb. 8, 2009, 04:45 PM
And if you had actually seen how they do it in the Belgian farms, you'd see that they keep foals with their mother until they are weaned and that legs are not tied up. I'd be happy to scan several articles I have here in Dutch equestrian publications about it, but they are after all written in Dutch. It is all very humane.

Pony Person
Feb. 8, 2009, 05:15 PM
Would you buy it? Drink it?
No because

1) the general idea is a bit strange to me
and
2) I don't even like milk (except for chocolate milk:D)

Ghazzu
Feb. 8, 2009, 06:32 PM
i think the mongolian people drank fermented horse milk?


That's what kumiss is.

Frank B
Feb. 8, 2009, 07:51 PM
I tried my mare's milk when we weaned her foal. I milked just enough from her to relieve excess pressure for a couple of days, and she seemed to enjoy it. But she always enjoyed having her udder cleaned. It did have a sweet taste, and was good in coffee.

MistyBlue
Feb. 8, 2009, 07:53 PM
Thanks guys...now we can all have kumis with our humus. :lol:
That's right....I think I saw that with Julia Roberts drinking fermented mare's milk with Mongols on a visit with them. She looked cute riding their short horses with her long legs!

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 08:05 PM
Julia Roberts would look cute riding anything!!!!

MistyBlue
Feb. 8, 2009, 08:49 PM
You have a valid point there County. :lol:
It was a fascinating documentary on PBS a while back. Here's a photo I found online...Julia posing with some of the pony riding Mongol children, sans makeup and she's still gorgeous:
http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/files/2008/10/na_img_wildhorse_intro.jpg

Alagirl
Feb. 8, 2009, 09:06 PM
Several of the peoples in the Asian steppes are known to milk their mares, Kirgise are another one...I know I spelled the name wrong. I guess you got to make due when cows don't flurish (or goats?)

BumbleBee
Feb. 8, 2009, 09:12 PM
I worked on a dairy farm for two years. The calves were never allowed to nurse. They were usually separated from the cow before they even got up (they take a long time to get up, much longer than foals) when the cow was put right back into the herd. The milk from the fresh cow isn't put in the tank (to be sold) until after the colostrum is gone, so that's separated and fed to the vealers/ calves via bottles or buckets. Maybe dairy farmers near you do things differently, but I can tell you the above is common practice in New England.

I share this not to be argumentatitve but rather to clarify things. I'd like to know how the horse milking industry is set up. Does anyone have any real experience with it here?

My uncle had a dairy and the cows do not nurse their young. They are only milked once a day so the milk collects for 24 hours. Much more collected at one time. The calfs were in pens together and fed by bucket.

edited as I recalled incorrectly they are milked twice, my point though was the calves don't get to nurse.

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 09:15 PM
Never heard of a dairy that milks once a day how do they prevent mastitis? How do they make a profit with only harvesting 1/2 a product?

BumbleBee
Feb. 8, 2009, 09:20 PM
Never heard of a dairy that milks once a day how do they prevent mastitis? How do they make a profit with only harvesting 1/2 a product?

Oh crud your right I forgot about the second milking, haven't been there in years and I always liked to help in the morning but was stuck inside during evening chores.

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 09:21 PM
I thought it awful strange!!!!

Ghazzu
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:02 PM
Some dairies milk 3 or even 4 X daily.

And calf hutches for the replacement heifer calves are *much* healthier than a barn.

JSwan
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:08 PM
Isn't there a culture that drinks fermented mare's milk?
Mare's milk sounds more palatable than when PETA was pushing Ben and Jerry's to make ice cream out of breast milk. :eek: :winkgrin:
I've never had it but I have heard that it's sweeter than cow's milk and other ruminant's milk. (goats, camels, etc)



I vaguely recall a nomadic tribe of..... something or other out on the Steppes. They drank mare's milk.

There's another tribe that drinks blood. Somewhere in Africa. Not zebra blood... goat? Don't remember.

I'm fat enough already. I don't need more food choices, I need to be chained to a moving treadmill and have my jaw wired shut.

Some folks seem to confuse calf hutches with veal crates. Don't know why. We've got dairies all over the place and the calves are plenty healthy.

I saw a show about a dairy in Canada that was automated and the cows let themselves in to be milked whenever they started feeling a bit too full. Didn't have to wait for milking time - the computer disinfected them, did the strip test, the works. Interesting.

county
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:08 PM
Theres 2 places here that I know of that tryed the 3x for awhile but went back to two. Said it just wasn't cost effective?

tkhawk
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:26 PM
There's another tribe that drinks blood. Somewhere in Africa. Not zebra blood... goat? Don't remember.



The Masaai of Tanzania and Kenya. They don't kill the cow, just get some blood and mix it with the milk. I tried it when I was there-it did taste good.

JSwan
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:29 PM
Ok - you need to tell us all the story. Is this ceremonial? Normal fare? Nutritional supplement in times of drought?

Why were you there?

Do tell! I love a good story.

JSWiley
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:48 PM
I'm not trying to start anything either just stating thats the heathiest way to raise a large number of dairy calfs. Springer dairy heifers last week were bringing $1500 to $2500 each theres no way the producers are going to allow investments like that to die without doing what ever they can to insure good health.

I definitely agree with this post. I know that no one is trying to start anything, and Im not either. I grew up on a dairy farm and my brother now runs it, and I can honestly say that on our farm, everything is done to make sure the calves are in good health and live healthy lives. They are a big investment and a lot is lost when one dies.

tkhawk
Feb. 8, 2009, 10:54 PM
Well I was there as part of a 15 day jeep safari. Did three wild life parks-Tarangire, Ngorongoro crater and the Serengeti. Lovely wildlife(lions, leopard, cheetah, hyena, elephants, rhino, hippo-pretty much everything) and all the camps are within the parks, so nights can be interesting as you are sleeping and can actually hear all the wildlife from your bed-somewhat unsettling.Our first camp had wild elephants walk right through camp in broad daylight.

But we stopped at two places to take in the culture also. One was at a Masaai village. Somewhat touristy, as they were used to us tourists visiting. But they did their greeting dance-jumping up and down and the headman-the guy with four wives invited us to one of his cottages. He gave us a drink of blood and milk. Half the group were reluctant, but I thought I would try it-I mean not like you can get it anywhere. They get it from a vein in the neck and apparantely it doesn't hurt much, they are ok. Really nice taste-very strange flavoring-but I had never drunk blood before, so had nothing to compare to. but it did taste nice. I really didn't ask him what occasion they use it for-he was busy explaining the culture, his wives etc.

The strangest thing was when we were in the extended crater conservancy area, we stopped because we could see wildlife. There was a kill in the distance and also a lone Masaai walking there. Not the least bit concerenced-one of my fellow travellers negotiated and bought his spear for the equivalent of 20 bucks and he was happy and walked away. The guide said , the animals-lions and elephants know a Masaai by their bright red clothes and will flee. They live in a nice balance-as long as they don't attack the cattle, they leave each other alone-oftentimes they send 10yr old kids out into the wild to graze the cattle! At least during the day, the lions don't bother them . Nice place-very different mindset!!

smm20
Feb. 9, 2009, 01:16 AM
I tried some kumis when I was in Uzbekistan. I won't say that I liked it, but I would certainly try it again, or purchase horse milk in order to learn to make it. I also tried some sort of hard, cheese-like residue that was a by-product. Tasted kind of like parmesan cheese. I don't have any photos, but I saw the milking from a distance. The foal was next to the mare. I saw the mare and foal out frequently with the rest of the herd, and the foal seemed healthy.

Frank B
Feb. 9, 2009, 09:32 AM
Here's the robotic cow milking machine. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHJTTVlt4lY)
Fascinating device. Note how it feels around for the teats, disinfects them, then proceeds with the milking.

Here's a different model (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Vo4NJU5wTk&feature=related) with an explanation of what's taking place.

There are many more videos on the website. Evidently the cows like it. No more cold hands jerking on tender teats! :eek:

JSwan
Feb. 9, 2009, 09:54 AM
No more cold hands jerking on tender teats! :eek:

Do they make one for overeager human males on wintertime dates? :lol:


Thawk - thanks for describing your trip. It sounds like an incredible experience!

mayhew
Feb. 9, 2009, 09:59 AM
I've never bought it but drank it from my own to try.

I'm trying to picture this... Please tell me you squirted it into a container first!

county
Feb. 9, 2009, 10:01 AM
Well ya same as when I milk a cow!!!!!! LOL

fordtraktor
Feb. 9, 2009, 10:27 AM
I drank airak, the fermented mare's milk, in Mongolia (we went on a horse trek in the steppes). It was very yogurty with quite a bit of tang, and not very alcoholic. The cheese was not good. Eating horsemeat is more a Kazakh practice than a Mongolian one.

Those little Mongolian steppe ponies are pretty amazing. They are not much to look at, but we covered 40 km a day through the mountains for a week over rocky terrain, and they are not shod. All in a day's work, apparently.

Pony Person
Feb. 9, 2009, 02:57 PM
Mare's milk sounds more palatable than when PETA was pushing Ben and Jerry's to make ice cream out of breast milk. :eek: :winkgrin:

THIS is why we need a vomiting emoticon. O.o Ouch...