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The best, organic milk from our cows grazing the Yorkshire & Northumbria Dales

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Seaweed on the Menu for our Organic Cows

A TASTE of the ocean to keep Acorn Dairy cows ship-shape and free from antibiotics.

In the spring and summer our short-horn cows graze on nutrient-filled grass, clover and herb leys, grown free from any added chemicals and research has shown organic milk to be much richer in antioxidants, healthy fatty acids and Omega 3 as a result of the herd feeding on grass and clover.

In winter, when their is no fresh grass growth, stock can miss out on certain nutrients if they are simply fed grass silage. During this time our cows are given a rich mix of feed which includes organic silage made from five different rye grasses and four types of clover, apple cider, Himalayan rock salt, chicory, plantain, whole crop barley, pea silage, fodder beets and ground maize. We added Apple cider vinegar a few years ago.

Graham’s perfect diet for them now includes seaweed, renowned for its iodine content, to boost cows’ immune systems. The result is a nutrient rich feed loaded with vital trace elements and it seems to be going down well. The cows can graze 24 hours a day on the feed in stock sheds that also feature automatic grooming brushes and memory foam mattresses.

The aim is to keep the livestock happy and healthy so they don’t fall ill and require antibiotics. Prevention rather than cure. If antibiotics have to be used, then the cow has to be taken out of milk production for six days until the drugs are out of its system. This is our organic standard.

The seaweed feed is expensive but the cows love it and it certainly boosts their immune systems. Their milk then benefits customers by being higher in antioxidants and iodine which helps brain development.

An interesting side effect of  feeding seaweed is a reduction in methane emissions from the cows’ burps.
There are some impressive claims on the extent of this- some initial US and Australian studies cite 99% reductions but we wait some more research on this. However it does seem a win, win, win, … healthier Acorn Dairy cows, further reduced antibiotic use AND reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

If you would you like Acorn Dairy organic milk delivered to your business- we supply directly across the northern counties and via wholesaler across the UK. Local doorstep delivery of organic milk in glass bottles also available in parts of Yorkshire & Durham.  All enquiries welcome. 

Caroline Bell

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