We all love milk, especially so here in Nigeria where food allergies are rare (almost non-existent) and nobody is milk-intolerant. We use milk for our chocolate drinks, use it to drink our paps and akara on Saturdays and use it also on those Sunny afternoons we feel like drinking garri with loads of groundnut and cold water. Indeed, life is good with milk! It is perhaps the greatest thing that happened to humanity. I mean…from the very day you were born, milk was the first thing you craved for. You got it and you loved it. And that is exactly how you will keep loving it even when your body cannot quite handle it with digesting it because of old age.

So now that I have established just how much we love milk, I have to ask how much you know about milk production. Yeah that’s right; do you know anything about the processes of milk go through from the body of a cow

[or whatever] to the factory until it lands in front of you on the dinning table? Do you? Well if you didn’t, then it’s quite a shame! But not to worry because that is what this article is about- to briefly acquaint you with the milk facts you may or may not know. Please read on to the next paragraph for more…

Most of the milk we drink on a daily basis come from cows. Thanks, cows; you are the greatest! These animals, the female cows that is, perform many purposes including birthing more cows and making meat and milk (plus other dairy products) available for mankind. Now the thing to know about livestock reserved for industrial production is that the animals are fed well (preferably with green, luscious grass), and they are kept in cool places to relax and just make milk. The milk itself is produced in the cow’s udders with the aid of the mammary glands and other components. The use of chemicals such as growth hormones and antibiotics may also aid the production of large quantities of milk which are milked twice daily.

The milking process used to be manual, such that farmers use their hands to gently squeeze out the raw milk from the animal’s teats. But thank goodness for technology because today the whole process is mechanized just so you can have more creamy stuff to drink away. After the milking process, the liquid, raw milk are then transported to the factories for processing. But before the raw milk get into the factory for actual processing, samples are first taken and tested  for  following- milkfat, protein, bulk milk cell count and bacteria count. This is to determine whether or not the milk is fit for consumption so as not to waste production resources producing what would be discarded after all.

The actual processing of milk in the factory go through three main processes- Pasteurization which basically involves heating the raw milk to a certain degree and then cooling it to kill germs, homogenization which entails pushing the raw milk through an atomizer to form tiny particles so that the fat is dispersed evenly throughout the milk, stopping the fat from floating to the top of the container, and separation which involves spinning milk through a centrifuge to separate the cream from the milk. It is during the separation stage that the cream and remaining milk are remixed to provide the desired fat content for the different types of milk being produced.

The milk is then packaged and ready to be distributed so you can buy it, enjoy it and be nourished by it. I hope now you love your milk even more having learnt the it undergoes before it finds its way to your dinning table. Now comment below to tell me how much you like milk and other facts you know about it other than the ones shared here.

Hoping to hear from you.