Frequently Asked Questions

This label means that our dairy cows only eat grass their entire lives. No grain or corn ever.

There is currently no single overarching certification for the label “grassfed” in the U.S., like there is for “organic,” which means the term, when used by producers, can cover a wide range of raising practices for livestock. Because this ambiguity can make the label more vulnerable to manipulation by disingenuous companies trying to profit from grassfed’s popularity, we are always specific in identifying our herd and our dairy products as “100% grassfed.” No grain or corn ever enters our animals’ mouths. We uphold this commitment because we believe it is the right way for our animals, our environment, and us.

Our herd’s diet consists entirely of pasture grasses cultivated specifically for optimal health and sustainability. For as much of the year as possible they graze on open pasture. Our carefully managed rotational grazing system ensures that they have access to their “salad bar” of diverse grasses and plants at just the right times to provide optimal nutrition and maintain soil fertility. They also have constant access to free choice mineral supplements to ensure they have adequate micronutrient levels. At certain times we use other supplements (like molasses, apple cider vinegar, probiotics, etc) to support overall health for for our animals.

During the colder months we feed our herd organic hay that we have either grown ourselves or sourced from other organic farms. 

Most dairy products available today, including organic, come from cows that have their diets supplemented with grain or corn in order to increase the amount of milk produced, but this is not natural or best for the animals. Organic standards require that cows spend a certain percentage of the year grazing on pasture, but any amount of supplemental grain or corn feed damages the animal’s digestion, liver, and overall health.

Our pasture-based system honors the natural design of our animals, rather than working against it. Cows are ruminants and have digestive systems that are designed for a grass diet. The health of the animals and the nutritional value of the milk they produce are compromised when their diet deviates from this natural state. By supporting our cows’ digestive and immune systems through an organic, grass-based diet, fresh air, and room to roam, we can raise animals that are generally healthy and do not need intervention from antibiotics.

If Franklin D. Roosevelt was right when he asserted that “A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself,” then protecting and nourishing the soil is one of the most important services we can render. Grazing animals play an important role in maintaining plant and soil health, which is critical for preventing erosion, removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and encouraging biodiversity. Through natural fertilization, aeration, and decomposition, grazing livestock like our cows help nourish and revitalize the land. We can see in our own fields a tangible difference in soil quality between the pastures where our herds regularly graze and the ones that are primarily used for hay. These differences in soil quality can be the difference in preventing soil erosion, supporting biodiversity, improving the healthfulness of our food, and also removing excess carbon from the atmosphere and using it to nourish life instead.

Our milk and dairy products from 100% grassfed cows are good sources of these important nutrients:

  • CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) – a good fatty acid that has been shown to offer a host of health benefits, including lowering cholesterol and triglycerides, strengthening the immune system, lowering insulin resistance, and enhancing muscle growth.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids – good fats that reduce inflammation rather than promote it like the omega-6 fats in conventional grain-fed dairy products
  • Vitamin E
  • Fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, and K

Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) is a good fatty acid that is produced in the guts of ruminants, like cows, and can be found in the milk and meat of animals raised on pasture. The human body cannot manufacture CLA on its own. But when consumed by humans through their food, CLA has powerful anti-inflammatory properties – good news for average Americans like us whose diet, lifestyle, and environment all tend to promote inflammation. Specifically, CLA has been shown in studies to help fight cancer, improve cardiovascular health, reduce high blood pressure, improve insulin sensitivity, promote bone and muscle growth, and aid in weight loss. 100% grassfed milk, especially from Brown Swiss cows like many of ours are, is significantly richer in CLA than non-grassfed cows.

Yes, we are unique in that 100% of the milk our cows produce is processed and crafted into our diary products that are only sold here on the farm. 

At our farm we raise Brown Swiss and Jersey cows – both heritage breeds prized for their good genetics and high quality milk. 

We believe in the value of A2/A2 protein in milk as it is important for the healthfulness and digestibility of the milk. Our genetic testing has revealed that about two-thirds of our herd are A2/A2. It is our goal for the entire herd to have the A2/A2 genetic makeup in the near future. 

Our overriding goal, for both our farming and dairy production, is to stay as close to nature’s design as possible. This principle extends to how we care for our calves as well. When our calves are born, they stay with their mother in order to get the benefit of the colostrum (immune-boosting first milk), until the time they wean naturally, typically around 10 months old. It is really important to us that our calves receive the nutritional benefit of nursing and the developmental benefit of remaining with their mother and with the herd. Not only is this more humane for the calves, but we find that it makes them better, healthier cows as they grow. Female calves will eventually become members of our dairy herd. Some of the male calves stay on our farm to be used for breeding, but most are sold to local families.

We have dairy cows that are productive into their teens, which we take as a good sign of their wellbeing here on our farm. Our goal is to keep them as long as they can be healthy and productive. Currently we even have a couple fourteen year olds who are still calving and giving milk. As they age, we often transition them away from the milking rotation to serve as nurse mothers for our calves.  

 

 

Yes, according to Indiana state law all milk and milk products for human consumption must be pasteurized, with the exception of raw milk cheeses that have been aged for 60 days or more. We use vat pasteurization, which is a process that uses a lower temperature and longer amount of time in an effort to maximize nutrition and quality. The milk is held at 145 degrees for 30 minutes. We aim to preserve as many beneficial natural components of the milk as possible and to gently handle the fat and protein particles so they aren’t excessively damaged by the process. Since we do not homogenize our milk, the cream will still have some separation at the top of the bottle, but you can easily shake the bottle to reincorporate the cream throughout.

Homogenization is a process that uses mechanical pressure to alter fat molecules so that they do not separate from the rest of the liquid milk. In milk’s natural state, the milk fat – which we call “cream” – rises to the top, but homogenization interrupts this separation. One of the principles we uphold in our farming and production practices is staying as close to nature’s design as possible. We believe that milk does what it naturally does for good reason, and we choose to honor the natural behavior of the cream by not homogenizing the milk. While no studies have specifically linked homogenized milk to particular negative health consequences, it is true that homogenization disrupts the membrane around the fat particles and increases their surface area. Greater surface area means more exposure to oxygen and thus the potential for oxidation, which can damage fats, and may also provoke an antibody response from our immune system. The proteins and their structures are also changed during homogenization, which may be problematic for certain people’s digestion. Again, the science is not crystal clear on these matters, but the possibility for these kinds of issues arising from homogenization is sufficient reason to respect the wisdom of nature’s design for milk with cream that maintains its original structure and naturally rises to the top.

One of our hallmarks here at Traders Point Creamery is the beautiful glass bottles and jars we use to package many of our grassfed dairy products. They are non-toxic and free of BPA, BPS, and DEHP. For purity, beauty, and sustainability, glass is unparalleled among commonly used packaging materials, and we are committed to keeping our “grass in glass.” Here’s why…

Health Benefits of Glass
Glass is the most trusted material for protecting the purity of its contents. It is made from natural, non-toxic raw materials. Unlike plastic, glass will never leach harmful chemicals into your food, no matter how many times it is used. Of particular concern are the bisphenol compounds (BPA, BPS, etc), found primarily in plastic packagings, which has been shown to disrupt hormones; recent studies have revealed that even BPA-free plastics can impact our bodies’ normal endocrine activity. With glass, there is no possibility for toxin contamination.
Glass is the only type of container that the FDA labels as GRAS: Generally Recognized As Safe.

Environmental Benefits of Glass
Since glass is made completely from natural materials, it is 100% recyclable –over and over again, without any loss in its quality. The process requires less energy and uses fewer natural resources than any other packaging material.

This is a good question, because most of us have been taught to fear fat, in dairy products especially. But this is a myth! The good news is: no, full-fat dairy will not inherently make you gain weight or have heart problems. The even better news: it may in fact support healthy weight, metabolism, and heart health!

Numerous studies, with both children, adolescents, and adults, have demonstrated the benefits of full-fat dairy for maintaining a healthy weight and even promoting weight loss. For example, according to a 2012 review published in the European Journal of Nutrition, a review of 25 studies on high-fat dairy and disease risk indicated 18 studies that reported lower body weights, less weight gain, or a lower risk for obesity among full-fat dairy eaters. The other seven studies were inconclusive. “None of the research suggested low-fat dairy is better,” Dr. Mario Kratz, one of the study’s authors (source).

Regarding heart health, full-fat dairy improves HDL (the good cholesterol), lowers triglycerides, and decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease and heart attack. For example, a 2010 study from Australia, published in Nature journal, showed that people who ate the most full-fat dairy had a 69% lower risk of heart disease, compared with those who consumed the least amount. Check out this post on our blog to learn more about how to love your heart with full-fat dairy.

According to the FDA, milk that is labeled “whole” must contain at least 3.25% milkfat. Most commercially available whole milks remove all the cream during processing and add it back in to reach the necessary percentage for skim, 1%, 2%, or whole milk. We do not do this. Not only do we craft almost exclusively whole milk products (not low-fat or fat-free), we also leave all the cream in the milk. Since the average butterfat content for the kind of cows we raise is typically 4%-5%, the whole milk in our products contains a higher amount of the beneficial fats that naturally occur in milk from grassfed cows. Because we use 100% grassfed methods, the percentage of fat content in our milk varies slightly over the course of the year, depending on the season and the type of grasses the cows are grazing.

Yes! You can return your bottles to our Farm Store for a refund of your bottle deposit. We will sterilize and reuse the bottles and all do our part to help reduce waste and conserve resources!