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View Full Version : Milk in the U.S? (Florida specifically)


antonio107
04-20-2011, 03:41 PM
Every time I head down south for a vacation, I have fun going to the grocery store near our winter place and seeing all the different things that Publix has versus the grocery stores here in Canada. Good tasting Corn Pops. BEER sold at the grocery store. An endless variety of snack foods and frozen pizzas.

And yet, for the life of me, milk from the states just doesn't taste right at all! Maybe it's just because it doesn't come in bags...;) The milk fat is all different. I get 2% milk back home, and the 2% in Florida tastes somewhere between homogenized and table cream! This leads me to buy skim milk; don't get me started on coffee cream!

Sort of a random, unprovoked mini-rant, but I'm wondering if anyone else noticed a similar taste/texture difference between U.S. And Canadian milk. Or perhaps between dairy from Florida and that from other states? I know I sure have!

Mahaloth
04-20-2011, 08:18 PM
I noticed the milk in China tasted different and it was never refrigerated before you got it home.

You can't buy beer at grocery stores in Canada? In Michigan(your close neighbors here), we can buy liquor, wine, and beer at any grocery store. No limits or anything.

Kamino Neko
04-20-2011, 08:26 PM
Depends on the province. In Newfoundland, and, IIRC, Quebec, you can (or at least could) buy beer in regular stores. Ontario, only at Beer Stores. No idea about other provinces.

Snowboarder Bo
04-20-2011, 09:51 PM
Every time I head down south for a vacation, I have fun going to the grocery store near our winter place and seeing all the different things that Publix has versus the grocery stores here in Canada. Good tasting Corn Pops. BEER sold at the grocery store. An endless variety of snack foods and frozen pizzas.

And yet, for the life of me, milk from the states just doesn't taste right at all! Maybe it's just because it doesn't come in bags...;) The milk fat is all different. I get 2% milk back home, and the 2% in Florida tastes somewhere between homogenized and table cream! This leads me to buy skim milk; don't get me started on coffee cream!

Sort of a random, unprovoked mini-rant, but I'm wondering if anyone else noticed a similar taste/texture difference between U.S. And Canadian milk. Or perhaps between dairy from Florida and that from other states? I know I sure have!

It's prolly all the BGH.

Ephemera
04-20-2011, 09:55 PM
You can't buy beer at grocery stores in Canada? In Michigan(your close neighbors here), we can buy liquor, wine, and beer at any grocery store. No limits or anything.

Seeing wine and liquor in grocery stores is always a bit of a culture shock to me, and I'm American, though Southern.

Chronos
04-20-2011, 10:22 PM
Alcohol in grocery stores varies state-by-state. Some places, you can't get anything alcoholic at all at a grocery store, some you can get low-percentage things like beer but not wine or anything distilled, some you can get it at the grocery store but it has to be a segregated portion of the store that can be closed off from the rest, and what you can't get at a grocery store, you sometimes get at a privately-owned liquor store, sometimes only at state-run stores, and sometimes you can't get it at all without going to the next county or even state over.

Spoons
04-20-2011, 10:27 PM
You can't buy beer at grocery stores in Canada? In Michigan(your close neighbors here), we can buy liquor, wine, and beer at any grocery store. No limits or anything.Our tobacconists that can legally sell Cuban cigars make up for it. :)

Ephemera
04-20-2011, 10:36 PM
Alcohol in grocery stores varies state-by-state. Some places, you can't get anything alcoholic at all at a grocery store, some you can get low-percentage things like beer but not wine or anything distilled, some you can get it at the grocery store but it has to be a segregated portion of the store that can be closed off from the rest, and what you can't get at a grocery store, you sometimes get at a privately-owned liquor store, sometimes only at state-run stores, and sometimes you can't get it at all without going to the next county or even state over.

In states like Tennessee, where I live, it's county by county. I live in a county that only allows beer to be sold in stores (though you can buy mixed drinks in restaurants as of 2004); work in the next county over, which allows liquor -- up to and including full strength Everclear -- to be sold in liquor stores; and am less than an hour from Moore County, where Jack Daniels whiskey is distilled but can only be sold in the gift shop through a tax loophole and cannot be legally purchased anywhere else in the county.

WhyNot
04-20-2011, 10:40 PM
It's prolly all the BGH.

My guess is all the pus and mucus from the cows' near constant mastitis and other infections.


Oh, wait, I don't know if any of that is actually true, but I get about half a dozen emails a week assuring me it's so. :rolleyes:

Ephemera
04-20-2011, 10:42 PM
It's hard to be a hippie?

antonio107
04-20-2011, 11:00 PM
I see you're all more interested in the booze than the milk. Fair enough. :D

antonio107
04-20-2011, 11:02 PM
It's prolly all the BGH.

Do Canadian cows not have BGH? :confused:

Sycorax
04-20-2011, 11:14 PM
I moved to Florida (Publix, Win-Dixie) in 2004 from the Washington, D. C., area (Giant, Safeway) and use the 2%. We haven't noticed any difference, but then we (spouse and I) don't drink milk as a beverage, but use it occasionally on cereal and in cooking. My family (from D. C., Maryland, and Virginia) didn't seem to care much about milk; mostly we drank unsweetened iced tea (yes, I know most southerners prefer sweetened iced tea); and in the evening, coca-cola (before Coke changed its recipe); but occasionally we drank whole milk with bakery products, especially at breakfast on weekends -- donuts,cakes, cookies, pies, etc. I go along with those who question why humans are the only species that consume the milk of another species. (But then, what the heck would we use on our cereal and in cooking?)

devilsknew
04-21-2011, 12:17 AM
I go along with those who question why humans are the only species that consume the milk of another species. (But then, what the heck would we use on our cereal and in cooking?)

Interesting thing. Just recently I saw my first real Milkbank sign at a Hospital (where's the cellcam when you need it?). Not only do we take the milk of other mammals, but when we talk about our own human "dairys" we euphemize and sterilize it scientifically. No Milk Banks for Bessie.

tumbleddown
04-21-2011, 12:30 AM
Honey can take on a different taste based on what the bees eat, does milk take on a different taste based on what the cows eat?

What do Canadian cows eat?

devilsknew
04-21-2011, 12:40 AM
Honey can take on a different taste based on what the bees eat, does milk take on a different taste based on what the cows eat?

What do Canadian cows eat?

But really lots and lots of milk from lots and lots of different cows and farmers is all blended together... well homogenized, it would seem like it would obliterate any regional distinctions- although I can taste differences between local dairies and different store brands, but I think it has more to do with their pasteurizing and processing techniques more than anything to do with the provenance of the milk..

Little Nemo
04-21-2011, 12:56 AM
Honey can take on a different taste based on what the bees eat, does milk take on a different taste based on what the cows eat?

What do Canadian cows eat?Yes, it does. I was going to post that the difference is probably a difference in what the cows are fed. A speculation, but American cows are probably fed a lot more corn than Canadian cows - corn's not a natural feed for cattle but American farmers use it because it's heavily subsidized by the government.

devilsknew
04-21-2011, 01:54 AM
I've seen lots of Dairy and Beef Cows grazing on plenty of grass pastures in Florida. There area lot of ranches and I'm sure the cows are grazing more in Florida year round than in the Midwest or more northern climes. Their diets might be supplemented, but I'm sure plenty are grassfed.

Balance
04-21-2011, 10:09 AM
Honey can take on a different taste based on what the bees eat, does milk take on a different taste based on what the cows eat?
Definitely. Grazing on specific plants can change both taste and texture. You can tell from the milk if a cow has been eating bitterweed (Helenium amarum), for example. The milk tastes bitter and takes on sort of a slimy texture. The smell and taste of garlic is also known to carry over into milk.

However, as devilsknew pointed out, commercial dairy production involves mixing and homogenizing milk from many different cows. Any major difference in the final product would almost have to be the result of a systematic difference somewhere along the line--either in general feeding practices or in the processing of the milk.

Swords to Plowshares
04-21-2011, 10:25 AM
Milk in FL (and especially Publix milk) is mediocre. There's a huge difference between organic milk (Horizon, Organic Valley) and the regular stuff. If you see cows grassfeeding in Florida it's probably an organic farm.

However, upstate NY has great milk and I'll happily buy the regular stuff.

Maus Magill
04-21-2011, 10:36 AM
But really lots and lots of milk from lots and lots of different cows and farmers is all blended together... well homogenized, it would seem like it would obliterate any regional distinctions- although I can taste differences between local dairies and different store brands, but I think it has more to do with their pasteurizing and processing techniques more than anything to do with the provenance of the milk..

Homogenization refers to the practice of spraying the milk through very tiny nozzles prior to bottling. This more fully mixes the cream and the milk. That's also why you don't need to shake your milk bottles anymore.

What the cows eat can definitely affect how the milk tastes. When I was younger, every spring, the cows would start eating the wild onions that grew in their pastures. I hated milk in the spring.

WhyNot
04-21-2011, 10:40 AM
Homogenization refers to the practice of spraying the milk through very tiny nozzles prior to bottling. This more fully mixes the cream and the milk. That's also why you don't need to shake your milk bottles anymore.


Homogenization as a milk production process refers to that, yes. Homogenization as a broader term refers to taking a bunch of things and mixing them so you can't tell the individual parts apart anymore. "The homogenization of America" refers to cultures mingling so that they lose their separate cultural identities, for example.

So in large scale milk production, milk is homogenized (mixed with other milk) before it's homogenized (sprayed through very tiny nozzles.) ;)

Maus Magill
04-21-2011, 10:51 AM
Homogenization as a milk production process refers to that, yes. Homogenization as a broader term refers to taking a bunch of things and mixing them so you can't tell the individual parts apart anymore. "The homogenization of America" refers to cultures mingling so that they lose their separate cultural identities, for example.

So in large scale milk production, milk is homogenized (mixed with other milk) before it's homogenized (sprayed through very tiny nozzles.) ;)

Fair enough. I'm not familiar with large operations. As a kid, I would get sent up to my Grandfather's for a couple of weeks in the summer as free labor on his brother's dairy farm. Mmm... fresh pasture fed Guernsey milk. <drool-drool>

Snowboarder Bo
04-21-2011, 11:06 AM
Do Canadian cows not have BGH? :confused:

No, they don't.

European nations and Canada have banned rBGH to protect citizens from IGF-1 hazards. (http://www.preventcancer.com/consumers/general/milk.htm)
The United States is the only developed nation to permit humans to drink milk from cows given artificial growth hormone. Posilac was banned from use in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and all European Union countries (currently numbering 27), by 2000 or earlier. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bovine_somatotropin)

Posilac is the trade name that Monsanto Corp. marketed their synthetic rBGH under. That name and product are now owned by Eli Lilly & Co.

[interesting aside]

After leaving the CIA in 1977, George Bush landed a job as head of Eli Lilly. He was given the job by his good friends the Quayles, who at the time were one of the largest shareholders in the company. 11 years later, Dan Quayle was his VP nominee.

[/intersting aside]

suranyi
04-21-2011, 12:33 PM
No, they don't.

[/url]
[url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bovine_somatotropin] (http://www.preventcancer.com/consumers/general/milk.htm)

Posilac is the trade name that Monsanto Corp. marketed their synthetic rBGH under. That name and product are now owned by Eli Lilly & Co.

[interesting aside]

After leaving the CIA in 1977, George Bush landed a job as head of Eli Lilly. He was given the job by his good friends the Quayles, who at the time were one of the largest shareholders in the company. 11 years later, Dan Quayle was his VP nominee.

[/intersting aside]

However, just about all milk available in the supermarket is labeled that it doesn't contain BGH, even though it's legal in this country.

At least, that's what I see here in the Safeway in Northern California.

Snowboarder Bo
04-21-2011, 12:46 PM
However, just about all milk available in the supermarket is labeled that it doesn't contain BGH, even though it's legal in this country.

At least, that's what I see here in the Safeway in Northern California.

Safeway is one of a handful of store brands that are rBGH-free. Publix, Kroger and Wal-Mart are the others, but note that applies only to their store brands; they still sell other brands of milk that are not rBGH-free.

Captain Amazing
04-21-2011, 12:51 PM
After leaving the CIA in 1977, George Bush landed a job as head of Eli Lilly.

Just on your aside, he was on the Board of Directors of Eli Lilly. He never was its head. I'm also having trouble verifying that the Quayles owned large amounts of the company.

Zsofia
04-21-2011, 01:44 PM
Interesting thing. Just recently I saw my first real Milkbank sign at a Hospital (where's the cellcam when you need it?). Not only do we take the milk of other mammals, but when we talk about our own human "dairys" we euphemize and sterilize it scientifically. No Milk Banks for Bessie.
We may be the only species that has the sense to domesticate some creatures for milk, but I assure you, given the opportunity, plenty of animals drink milk. Cats and dogs are happy to, for example.

Snowboarder Bo
04-21-2011, 01:44 PM
Cap, I'll PM you. No need to hijack this whole thread, eh.

antonio107
04-21-2011, 01:52 PM
Thanks, Bo. That's some interesting food for thought!

Snowboarder Bo
04-21-2011, 01:56 PM
Your welcome, antonio.

voltaire
04-21-2011, 01:59 PM
Safeway is one of a handful of store brands that are rBGH-free. Publix, Kroger and Wal-Mart are the others, but note that applies only to their store brands; they still sell other brands of milk that are not rBGH-free.

Publix does not sell any brand milk with BGH, and Walmart brand milk is BGH free as well, don't know about the other brands.

Snowboarder Bo
04-21-2011, 02:19 PM
Publix does not sell any brand milk with BGH, and Walmart brand milk is BGH free as well, don't know about the other brands.

Upon further research, I see that you are correct: Publix has not sold milk containing rBGH since 2007. I also note that Wal-Mart, Costco and Kroger all have refused to carry brands that contain rBGH, at least since 2008.

Note that Kroger stores (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kroger) include many regional chains with names other than "Kroger", including Ralphs, Smith's, Pay Less, Food 4 Less and King Soopers, among many others.

Bridget Burke
04-21-2011, 02:22 PM
I haven't made a survey of milk throughout the USA. However, Revival Market (http://www.revivalmarket.com/)just opened in my neighborhood. I usually drink fat-free milk & don't really mind but their organic/sustainable/whatever fat-free milk is totally delicious.

But Revival Market can't sell beer or wine. The Heights was a trolley suburb annexed by Houston more than a century ago--on the condition the area remained dry. So--No Beer joints in The Heights. Now, it's No Hip Restaurants in The Heights. (A few have tried BYOB, but even the currently fashionable modest markup on wine, beer & cocktails is an important source of revenue.)

In most of Texas, beer & wine are sold in grocery (or other general) stores; liquor stores sell beer, wine & the hard stuff & have more limited hours. Of course, the state has its Dry Counties & Towns. But there is this Fossil Dry Area just north of Downtown Houston! (I live on the border, where a Pakistani family that owns 2 convenience stores & a liquor store is doing quite well, catering to Heights denizens in need of wine for pasta or craft-brewed 6-packs.)

devilsknew
04-22-2011, 09:15 PM
We may be the only species that has the sense to domesticate some creatures for milk, but I assure you, given the opportunity, plenty of animals drink milk. Cats and dogs are happy to, for example.

Oh sure, no argument there. As mammals, we all have a taste for milk. The original Babyfood... I think we all live our lives as mammals with our milkteeth, one hand on the teet. I still like a bit of gerber mixed cereal wioth some milk and sugar.

kunilou
04-22-2011, 10:01 PM
Forget BGH vs. non-BGH for a minute. My question is, is Canadian milk UHT?

UHT milk is pastuerized at a higher temperature to make it more shelf-stable than the original method. That's why Mahaloth's Chinese milk wasn't refrigerated. However, UHT milk does have a slight but noticeable difference in taste, and in the U.S. it's pretty much only used in single serving boxes of chocolate milk (obviously the chocolate flavoring masks the taste difference.)

If that isn't what you're experiencing, try 1% milk. Less fat, but not skim.

Snowboarder Bo
04-22-2011, 10:44 PM
AFAIK, most milk isn't UHT, unless you seek out a brand like Parmalat that's made specifically to be stored unrefrigerated. It tastes kind of different than the typical heat pasteurization process.

antonio107
04-22-2011, 10:50 PM
Forget BGH vs. non-BGH for a minute. My question is, is Canadian milk UHT?

UHT milk is pastuerized at a higher temperature to make it more shelf-stable than the original method. That's why Mahaloth's Chinese milk wasn't refrigerated. However, UHT milk does have a slight but noticeable difference in taste, and in the U.S. it's pretty much only used in single serving boxes of chocolate milk (obviously the chocolate flavoring masks the taste difference.)

If that isn't what you're experiencing, try 1% milk. Less fat, but not skim.

Nope. It's refrigerated. Theres some UHT chocolate milk that comes in juice box style tetra packs, but those are the exceptions.

devilsknew
04-22-2011, 11:28 PM
Well, then the question is, where does Florida Milk... or publix milke come from. With refrigerated trucks running on daily routes, where is the distribution point. Where is the dairy located. Is it from near or far. "Florida" Milk might not come from Florida.

Snowboarder Bo
04-23-2011, 08:33 AM
Florida milk most definitely comes from Florida. Florida is home to about 139 dairy farms that comprise wide open green pastures. We have 118,000 dairy cows in Florida that produce 253 million gallons of fresh milk each year. (http://www.floridamilk.com/dairy/dairy-farming/)

devilsknew
04-23-2011, 11:13 PM
Also, according to that link, it would seem as if Orange peel and pulp leftover from the citrus industry are also a large part of the Florida dairy cow's feed.

devilsknew
04-24-2011, 02:45 AM
MMM... Pushups.

devilsknew
04-24-2011, 02:49 AM
Push-up (http://www.theimaginaryworld.com/blapig02.jpg)
Orange Ice Milk.

devilsknew
04-24-2011, 03:20 AM
It seems like yesterday when everybody knew what a push-up was... now you got the girly types with their push-up bras.

elfkin477
04-26-2011, 06:49 PM
We may be the only species that has the sense to domesticate some creatures for milk, but I assure you, given the opportunity, plenty of animals drink milk. Cats and dogs are happy to, for example.I've always wondered about this factoid about milk... do the people repeating it give any thought to the fact that we might be the only ones to drink milk from other animals (well, besides the ants-aphid thing) because we're the only ones who have hands? Cats would probably love to drink milk as part of their normal diet, but it's awfully hard to milk a cow using wee little paws.

Maus Magill
04-27-2011, 07:14 AM
I've always wondered about this factoid about milk... do the people repeating it give any thought to the fact that we might be the only ones to drink milk from other animals (well, besides the ants-aphid thing) because we're the only ones who have hands? Cats would probably love to drink milk as part of their normal diet, but it's awfully hard to milk a cow using wee little paws.

Why milk the cow yourself, when you can get your human slaves to do it for you?

Pleonast
04-27-2011, 01:04 PM
However, just about all milk available in the supermarket is labeled that it doesn't contain BGH, even though it's legal in this country.

At least, that's what I see here in the Safeway in Northern California.
California law prohibits the sale of milk that contains BGH.

Raguleader
04-27-2011, 03:06 PM
What do Canadian cows eat?

Heh?

Rhymes with "Eh?":D

Ponch8
04-27-2011, 03:44 PM
If the cows have pituitary glands, you can be sure their milk has BGH, no matter what the label says.

voltaire
04-27-2011, 07:15 PM
If the cows have pituitary glands, you can be sure their milk has BGH, no matter what the label says.

True, but not true if you replace "BGH" with what they actually use, which is rBGH. And in case you're going to say that there's no difference, read this (http://civileats.com/2010/10/01/rbgh-free-claim-ruled-ok-with-no-caveats/).

No umlaut for U
04-27-2011, 07:29 PM
For shelf life's sake, some dairies pasteurize above the legal minimum time/temperature, producing the "cooked flavor" defect. Fine if you're used to that brand, but weird if you've drunk another for years prior.

Sycorax
04-27-2011, 09:32 PM
Originally Posted by elfkin477
I've always wondered about this factoid about milk... do the people repeating it give any thought to the fact that we might be the only ones to drink milk from other animals (well, besides the ants-aphid thing) because we're the only ones who have hands? Cats would probably love to drink milk as part of their normal diet, but it's awfully hard to milk a cow using wee little paws.


http://www.cat-world.com.au/can-cats-drink-milk

devilsknew
04-27-2011, 10:02 PM
I've always wondered about this factoid about milk... do the people repeating it give any thought to the fact that we might be the only ones to drink milk from other animals (well, besides the ants-aphid thing) because we're the only ones who have hands? Cats would probably love to drink milk as part of their normal diet, but it's awfully hard to milk a cow using wee little paws.

Really, if you watch any nursing cat or dog you might see them using their "paws" or "hands" or 'carpals' to help secure a teet or grab on. I wouldn't be surprised if some dairy cats haven't developed a taste for milk... whether the cow will let them suckle without trampling them is another matter.

Sycorax
04-28-2011, 08:48 PM
devilsknew - don't know if you've had any farm or cat experience, but a cat suckling a cow's teat is highly unlikely. Adult cats use their paws on soft objects, even humans, as if nursing from their mother, but this is infantile behavior that soothes the cat (sorta like a human cuddling a teddy bear). But as the link that I posted above says, most cats are lactose intolerant and milk can cause digestive issues; milk from any other mammal is not needed for nutrients. I have three cats, and only one of them likes milk; I give her about a tablespoon every few days as a treat. BTW, cats (and dogs) may also like chocolate, but given enough, it can kill them. Sorry if I'm being preachy, but I love animals of any species, and humans need to educate themselves about other species and their needs.

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