Last week sometime, one of NP’s co-workers, we’ll call him Alex, went to a trivia night and one of the more memorable questions of the night was “How many cups of milk does a cow produce in her lifetime?”
When NP brought this question home to me, I said “Well that depends. What breed is she? Grassfed? Or does she get grain? What exactly was her expected productive life span? Because not all farms and locations are equal. Was this question drawn from recent data? Or was it still hanging around from the 1950’s or 60’s?
And I could go on.
So while I thought it was an impossibly silly question to expect a very exact answer to – it did get me (and NP’s coworker) thinking! In the middle of chores and milking two cows, I started doing mental math – which quickly upgraded to calculator math!
Abby and 54 each give us 6+ gallons per day. And that is a fairly average amount of milk for the Jersey breed. So, if there are 16 cups in each gallon and one cow gives 6 gallons per day for 305 days of the year (they are on vacation for the other 60 days!!) then that is 29,280 cups of milk in just ONE year.
Taking our 29,280 cups of milk times 4 years gave us 117,120 cups of milk. Which isn’t quite the 200,000 that trivia night suggested but it’s still quite a lot!! And Holsteins would probably hit that 200,000 mark quite easily.
I don't know about you, but what that leaves me with is a sense of wonder and appreciation for the animals that provide us with such bountiful, delicious food!
Alex, thank you for the material! And I hope to see you at the farm someday soon!!
Brun Ko Farm