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Differences in milk characteristics between a cow herd transitioning to organic versus milk from a conventional dairy herd
- Tunick, Michael H., Paul, Moushumi, Ingham, Elaine R., Karreman, Hubert J., Van Hekken, Diane L.
- International journal of dairy technology 2015 v.68 no.4 pp. 511-518
- alpha-linolenic acid, case studies, dairy cows, dairy herds, diet, farms, flavor, medium chain fatty acids, milk, odors
- Characteristics of conventional milk and milk from a herd transitioning from nongrazing to organic were studied by comparing adjacent farms over a 12‐month period. Levels of short‐ and medium‐chain fatty acids partially responsible for aroma and flavour were initially lower in the milk from the transitioning herd, but not after the cows had settled into an organic diet. Once that point was reached, the amount of α‐linolenic acid in the transitioning herd milk exceeded that of the conventional herd. This case study demonstrates that subtle differences occur in the milk as cows transition to organic.