×

Please Remove Adblock
Adverts are the main source of Revenue for DoveMed. Please remove adblock to help us create the best medical content found on the Internet.

Organic Milk: Health Benefits For Extra Cost?

Last updated March 18, 2015

Approved by: Maulik P. Purohit MD MPH

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), organic milk is the name used for milk produced by cows that have been fed only organic feed, have not been fed mammalian or poultry by-products, are not treated with synthetic hormones or antibiotics and are allowed free access to pasture.


According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), organic milk is the name used for milk produced by cows that have been fed only organic feed, have not been fed mammalian or poultry by-products, are not treated with synthetic hormones or antibiotics and are allowed free access to pasture. The popular opinion among consumers is that organic milk is more healthy, safe, and nutritious than regular milk.

The studies consulted by the National Dairy Council clearly state that organic milk and regular milk are nearly identical with respect to nutrition and safety. Stringent testing by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and USDA shows that milk ranks among the lowest in all agricultural products for detectable residues. Further, testing of both conventional and organic milk has shown no antibiotic or hormone residues either. In fact, less than 0.001% tankers test positive for any animal drug residue in conventional milk, including antibiotics. Thus, ready-for-sale milk, be it organic or conventional, enters the market only after thorough testing to make sure that it is safe for consumption.

Of course, in organic dairy farming, the animals are treated better, allowed freedom to move, and are not subjected to artificial means to increase milk production. The ethical treatment of cattle in organic farming might make consumers feel relieved that the milk they consume is produced by animals that are treated humanely.

Organic dairy farmers can use only organic pesticides and fertilizers and have to comply with the requirements of USDA’s National Organic Program. This process probably makes the milk more expensive than regular milk when it finally comes to market.

In conclusion, there is no reason to fear that milk from conventional dairy farms is inferior to organic milk. Organic milk is neither more healthy nor does it hold any other advantage over regular milk.

References:

http://www.nationaldairycouncil.org/SiteCollectionDocuments/child_nutrition/parenting_nutrition/OrganicMilkFAQ.pdf (accessed on 06/02/2015)

Milk Myth #4: Organic Milk is Much Healthier Than Regular Milk. (n.d.). Retrieved March 18, 2015, from http://www.healthyeating.org/Milk-Dairy/Milk-Myth-Busters/Article-Viewer/Article/33/Milk-Myth-5-Organic-milk-is-much-healthier-than-regular-milk.aspx 

Reviewed and Approved by a member of the DoveMed Editorial Board
First uploaded: March 18, 2015
Last updated: March 18, 2015