There’s a lot of information on a milk label. The brand of milk, the fat content, where it was bottled. In know your milk terms, we will cover some of the terms that are found on our milk label.

Pasteurization

Pasteurization is the method used to kill bacteria in milk and was introduced by scientist Louis Pasteur in the late 1800s. While milk in the cow’s udder is sterile, bacteria can hang out in the teat and on milking equipment and end up in the milk, even with proper cleaning.

These bacteria can cause illness if not destroyed. Pasteurization works by using heat and time to kill the bacteria. The most common type of pasteurization is known as high temperature, short time (HTST), where milk is heated to at least 161 degrees for 15 seconds. This is what we use here at our creamery.

Another type that is gaining popularity is known as ultra pasteurization or UHT. Many organic milks are pasteurized using this type, giving it longer shelf life. Our organic milk uses the same method of pasteurization as our traditional milk, HTST.

Sassy Cow plant
Our creamery. This is where our milk is pasteurized and homogenized before being bottled.

Homogenization

The majority of milk in the U.S. is homogenized, meaning the fat is formed into smaller globules so they are suspended evenly throughout the milk. This makes the milk very uniform. Milk that is not homogenized will have a “cream top” since fat will separate out from the rest of the milk and rise to the top. Nothing is added or removed from the milk in this process.

Stay tuned for “Know you milk terms” part 2!

Have questions about our milk? Feel free to contact us at 608-837-7766 or mara@sassycowcreamery.com.