It snowed again today. It’s interesting that when snow is forecasted, people run to the store to buy milk and bread. Really. Not emergency-type food; instead, perishable (and probably ultra-pasteurized) milk that will go bad quickly if the power goes out. And bread? How long can you live on bread?
Instead, why not keep a nice dairy animal, like a Nigerian Dwarf doe (goat), which will produce a manageable amount of milk and also eat undesirable brush and weeds? You could even make some tasty chèvre and serve it on crackers at a dinner party – impress your friends!
You can’t legally buy raw milk for human consumption here, so if you want it fresh from the source, you need your own dairy animal. We’re researching dairy animals for suitability, and Nigerian Dwarf goats are in the running. They’re small (medium dog sized) and their milk has a high butterfat content, which makes it very creamy. Really good goat’s milk is clean-tasting and delicious – it gives cow’s milk a run for its money.
Another option is a small dairy cow, like a Dexter or a miniature Jersey. Even a small dairy cow will produce more milk than the goats would, though, so we’d need a plan for the excess. One plus to the cow: grazing on the lush green pastures that comprise much the farm. Hmm…a self-propelled mower that will convert pasture to milk? Sounds intriguing.
Stay tuned for updates on whether we go with goats or a cow. Or both.