Happy Cows Make The Best Grassfed Whey - Fact
We believe our cows' quality of life directly translates into producing the highest quality grassfed milk, which becomes evident within our whey. Our cows spend most of their lives outdoors (~90% of the year driven most by inclement weather) enjoying Ireland's clean & fresh gulf stream air. The temperate climate keeps them in nature and out of forced ventilation, which can lead to the spread of unnecessary infection and stress. In comparison to the typical nutrient-rich grain-fed cows milked up to four times a day, our grass-fed cows attend the milking parlor twice daily. Not only does this reduce stress on each individual cow, but it also drastically reduces the chances of logistical injuries.
Common Sense - The Body Works Best When It's Happy!
The findings and studies are endless, and it only makes sense; our bodies operate best when stresses are low, our physiological needs met, and the stability of these needs achieved. Unlike global dairy factories (CAFOs - Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations), our animals live full lives often 20+ years. We've found consistency is critical when it comes to the quality cultivation & production of milk. Our cows have a line of sight to food, water, bedding, and, most importantly, each other; they bask daily in a routine that is predictable and safe. Producing the best grass-fed whey was not, and is not by chance, but rather the result of finding significance in our passion & philosophy around sourcing whey the right way.
Small Herds with Big BondsOur cows grow old in small herds on small family farms. Each cow is known by name, by their caretakers. The present-day expression of the craft of dairy farming passed down through generations of masters and animals living and growing together in an all-but-lost symbiotic art. Animal welfare is genuinely at a premium on Irish farms. Our cows enjoy a slow, predictable routine tended by familiar stewards on each farm. This low-stress lifestyle ensures the consistency of a high-quality nutrient-dense grassfed whey and represents the power of roots (not seen on the surface).
Soft GrazingDairy cows are docile creatures who enjoy walking short distances at a time. Smaller farms mean the cows walk a shorter stretch from grazing to the milking parlor. This practice is critical to ensuring comfort and lowers the risk of injury. Natural sunlight and mist-soaked strolls on the soft soil (versus concrete on conventional farms) keep cows at ease and reduce undue strain on their bodies. Our cows dine on a diet of at least 95% grass with a little added clover for nutrition. This other 5% or less comes from concentrates (fermented ensilage from our pastures - Ryegrass) to enhance specific nutrients for our cows at critical stages in the year, such as late gestation and early lactation, akin to what we do for our health as humans. We are proud to claim > 95% grassfed on pasture. To learn more about the too commonly marketed claim and fallacy - "100% Grassfed" Claim.
Cows are ruminants, which means their stomachs have four compartments. Diets of corn, cereals, and concentrate feed can cause dietary upset for ruminants, whereas grass provides a highly digestible and nutritionally complete form of nourishment. Adding small amounts of clover to their diet further facilitates consistent digestive health. Science shows that milk protein yield & content both increase linearly as the ratio of a dairy cow's intake of fresh grasses to corn silage (feed) increases.
Better Diet (More Grass) - Happier Gut - Better Milk - The Best Grassfed Whey
A Rumen stomach prefers a grass diet over all others. The grasses work with the four chambers that make up the ruminant's gut (Reticulum, Rumen, Omasum, and Abomasum) and optimizes best the chemicals needed to turn organic plant tissue into concentrated proteins and fats. The efficiency of a ruminant stomach on a grassfed diet is unrivaled. The concentration of nutrient density (whey protein fractions) produced within the milk significantly outperforms a cow forced fed on a TMRS - Total Mixed Ration System (i.e., concentrates, feeds, corn silage, etc.). In North America, TMRS systems are the most commonly used on dairy farms with feedlots. The geography of the USA simply doesn't compete with the likes of a New Zealand or Ireland when it comes to the ability to grow and sustain lush GREEN PASTURES year-round to supply an unabated demand for delicious grassfed milk.
Weaver, Samantha R, et al. "Elevation of Circulating Serotonin Improves Calcium Dynamics in the Peripartum Dairy Cow in: Journal of Endocrinology Volume 230 Issue 1 (2016)." Journal of Endocrinology, Bioscientifica Ltd, 5 Aug. 2018, joe.bioscientifica.com/view/journals/joe/230/1/105.xml.
The effect of serotonin on the GH, T3, T4, milk production and composition, H Khazali, Endocrine Abstracts., 2002
The linear relationship between the proportion of fresh grass in the cow diet, milk fatty acid composition, and butter properties. J Dairy Sci. 2006 Jun;89(6):1956-69