Got Milk?

Photo by Amy Diehl

    Most of us consume some type of dairy product whether it is milk at meals or ice cream for dessert. However, have you ever wondered how your milk got into the carton or how your ice cream was made? There are probably many things you did not know about milk and its history. For example, most of our dairy foods originated from dairy cows, but do you know why we chose the cow as our primary source for dairy foods? After all, all mammals produce milk, and in some other countries and even in other parts of the United States, people drink the milk of other mammals such as goat, sheep, horses, and even reindeer. Come along on this milk adventure- you may be surprised at what you will learn.

Moo Wonder icon Moo Wonders
  • Dairy products rank in the top 5 agricultural products for Ohio.
  • Ohio ranks first in the United States in swiss cheese production.
  • Cheese was first made over 4,000 years ago in Asia.


Assignment: Cows are not native to North America. Write a report on how and why we began using cows as our main source of dairy products. Some questions you may want to answer:

  • From what region of the world did cows originate?
  • We were not always able to milk cows- how were they domesticated?
  • Who brought dairy cows to America, and when?
    *hint: You may begin by looking up some history on cattle in the encyclopedia.

To learn more about your milk source, just click on any of the subjects below:

Types of cows
Cow biology
Farming strategies
Time to milk

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