Frequently Asked Questions
What is A2/A2 Milk?
A2/A2 refers to the protein type identified in the milk. In order to explain A2/A2 milk, we have to go a bit into the history of milk. Years ago, cows only produced a fraction of the milk that they do today. Back then, because cows produced much less, the nutritional content of the milk was higher. However, in our day and age, there is a focus on producing higher amounts of milk for everyone to be able to afford to purchase milk. Despite the increased costs of most of what you buy today, milk does not cost much more than it did 20 years ago. But there has been an invisible cost. Cows have been bred genetically to produce more and more milk. Thus a high producing cow is bred to a high producing bull. Through this process, milk has changed more than just nutrition. With fairly new technology, it has been found that the protein has also changed. Research has found that there is a classification of proteins in the milk. By random naming, scientists have discovered A1/A1, A1/A2, and A2/A2 proteins. The source of the proteins depends on the genetics of the cow. Some cows carry the gene to produce A1/A1 protein while others carry the gene to produce A2/A2 protein. The majority of today's cows in America produce a combination of both.
Why should I care about the proteins in the milk?
The answer to this was found in one of the children. Our ownership team has been researching the A2/A2 milk for several years. However, the team found many differing perspectives on the matter. Our research was confirmed by Petra. When Petra was born, when her mother consumed milk, Petra would suffer an upset stomach. On a whim, her mother purchased A2/A2 milk and found that Petra slept all night without incident. Her mother then tried conventional milk and Petra was again up all night with digestive issues. After several tries back and forth, the resolve was found in drinking A2/A2 milk. Although Petra is older now and drinking milk on her own, she still has the same resolve. She can drink A2/A2 milk but not milk containing A1/A1 protein.
In the history of milk, Americans are drinking less and less milk because they believe they are lactose intolerant. Doctors have listened and assumed the cause has been the lactose. Through recent years, scientists are now believing the real cause of indigestion for many is actually the A1 protein and the solution is A2/A2 milk. All other mammals produce A2/A2 milk, including humans, which means A2/A2 milk could offer a closer experience to drinking the milk that humans are”supposed” to have and is why digestion is easier.
In our studies, A2/A2 milk may be found in most breeds of cows to some degree. However, unless bred to another breed of cow, Guernseys are predominantly A2/A2. We test each cow for verification of the gene which produces A2/A2 milk before she is allowed to produce milk. However, the Guernsey cow has more to offer. Naturally, Guernsey milk has 12% more protein, 33% more vitamin D, 25% more vitamin A, 30% more cream, 15% more calcium.
Many, if not most, cows in America have been adapted to live in high population cow corals and produce very high quantities of milk. Guernseys have not. Guernseys produce much less milk but higher quality milk. Guernseys are from the island of Guernsey and are adapted to live on pasture with a supplemental grain for energy. Colorado Cow believes this to be much more natural and believe the average consumer agrees.
Do you remove the calf from her mother?
Unless there is a life-threatening reason, we leave the newborn calves with their mothers. Because we run small populations of cows, we can do this. The cows enjoy raising their own calves and the calves can drink as much milk as they want anytime they want. And it just looks natural.
Are the cows on pasture?
We want our cows to stay on pasture as much as weather permits. However, in a blizzard or harsh weather, we need to find shelter for our cows. It's the humane thing to do.
That being said, some will ask if the cows only eat grass. We believe cows live naturally on pasture grass. However, that grass produces seed. The cows eat that seed for energy. In fact, cows need the energy to help them digest grass. Without energy, milk cows will wither up and become sick. We feed our cow predominately grass, but we also supplement with a small amount of grain.
Why is my milk more GOLDEN than conventional milk?
This character trait is exclusive to Guernsey milk. Guernsey cows cannot utilize the beta-carotene in the feed they consume. For this reason, the beta-carotene is passed on to you. Some ask the reason why cheese is orange. In ages past, the best cheese was naturally orange in color. Nowadays cheesemakers need to add annatto or the cheese would be white. Cheese produced from Guernsey cows is naturally orange as is it's milk to a lesser extent.
Is the milk GMO-free and Organic?
Yes, our cows are fed GMO-free feeds making them GMO-free. Although we are headed towards organic, it takes many years to obtain organic status. Also, Guernsey cows are hard to find. It will take years to find enough Guernsey cows to produce the milk to meet the demand. Each cow we purchase must go through the process before she is considered organic.
Where is the farm located?
Currently, our cows are located outside Kersey Colorado. Because our cows need pasture, they may move from time to time to obtain the best pasture.
The processing plant, however, is located east of Longmont. The Docheff family has been gracious enough to allow us to rent their processing facility. Without their help, we would not be able to process all these great products.
Do you give tours?
We believe that relationships are very important. We would love to have the general public witness to the comfort of the cows and pet the calves. Although not yet set up, we excitedly look forward to having the public come to spend time with us and our cows. We hope to see you soon.
Why do Colorado Cow products cost more than conventional milk products?
This is a great question and we feel good that our products cost more. Our products cost more as they are much more expensive to produce for a good reason. First, because Guernsey cows are a fraction of the population, they cost much more to purchase. Second, we choose to make our cows live as naturally as possible. This makes it necessary to have large amounts of pasture for them. We do not stockpile them into little corals. Third, we choose to remain small. We do not use large equipment to care for our animals or process our milk. Much of what we do is by hand. Fourth, we use processing methods which are not quick and easy. We choose to do things the long way ensuring that you receive the best product available. Lastly, we choose to use local top-of-the-line ingredients. For instance, our gelato uses the best ingredients as opposed to the cheapest ingredients.
Why does the cream float to the top? Why do I have to shake it each time?
Colorado Cow believes that dairy products, in their native form, are better than highly processed products. For this reason, we choose not to homogenize our milk. Homogenization is a process whereas milk is subjected to very high pressure and blown through a little small hole. The globules explode making them very small. Using the analogy of bubbles in a bathtub. The air bubbles float to the top whereas the really small ones stick to your toes. Each time you shake your milk, remember your milk is more natural. And as a perk, you can skim the cream for your coffee.
What is LTLT?
For the same reason we choose not to homogenize, we also choose to pasteurize at the lowest legal temperature. Low-temperature Long Time refers to the process we use. We place the milk in a vat and bring the temperature up to 145* and hold it for 30 minutes. This disturbs the flavors and proteins much less than other forms of pasteurization. Other forms of pasteurization that other processors use include 165* HTST (high-temperature short time) or 280* ESL/UHT (Extended Shelf Life/Ultra-High Temperature)
The high heat affects the protein. The hotter the heat, the more the protein is degraded. We are not allowed to sell raw milk, but ours is the best milk we can legally sell to you. Check your milk bottle to see how your milk has been pasteurized.
Why only Colorado?
We are choosing to limit our supply for several good reasons.
Relationships are very important to us. We know that we do not have the ability to know our customers if we are too far spread out. We want to know you. We value you on a personal level. You are important to us and that's not a sales pitch. We know that it is impossible to have relationships if we do not live near you. We want to know what you want and how we can help out with that.
We also recognize that we have our limits, the larger area we serve, the less quality control we will have at ensuring product quality and service.