Thousands of years ago, a mutation in the human genome allowed many adults to digest lactose and drink milk.
December 28, 2012 Thousands of years ago, ancient farmers gained the ability to consume milk as adults without getting an upset stomach. A remarkable mutation let some of them digest lactose sugar. But scientists still puzzle over why that mutation persisted and became prevalent in modern humans.
Dairy farmer Bob Andrews feeds heifers in the same barn his grandfather used. He says today "the harder you work, the further you get behind."
December 5, 2012 The expiration of the farm bill has left dairy farmers without a milk pricing program — and a safety net. While all farmers are watching closely, milk producers face an environment where cow feed costs more than cow milk.
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European dairy farmers spray police officers with milk during a demonstration outside the European Parliament in Brussels on Monday.
Geert Vanden Wijngaert/AP
November 28, 2012 Our complicated relationship with milk may make images of this week's EU dairy farmers' protest more powerful than, say, if they sprayed police with water. For much of human history, says historian Deborah Valenze, we've wavered between reverence and revulsion for the stuff.
Laura Chase, a member of the MOOMilk dairy cooperative, sweeps her barn in a film still from documentary, Betting The Farm.
June 25, 2012 Ten small-scale milk farmers in Maine formed a cooperative to face mounting market pressures, but can an alternative business model save the family industry? A new documentary premiered in Silver Spring, Md. last Friday tells the story.
To make yogurt with an heirloom starter, add freeze-dried starter or a spoonful of yogurt to fresh milk.
May 1, 2012 Yogurt enthusiasts are rediscovering heirloom yogurt starters, many of which originated in countries with long traditions of yogurt-making. These bacterial cultures, which live on milk, can regenerate in one batch after another.
A Safeway customer shops for milk in Livermore, Calif.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
January 3, 2012 There's not enough organic milk, especially in states like Florida and Georgia. Inputs — like organic grain and hay for animals — are now dramatically more expensive for farmers. That means organic dairy cows are getting less food and producing less milk.
A customer studies a display of milk and dairy products at Bryan's Grocery in San Francisco in March.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
November 1, 2011 Most adults can't digest milk sugar: It's a recent genetic adaptation most common in northern Europe. The food industry has come up with enzyme supplements and lactose-free products for those who want to enjoy ice cream without a tummy ache. But not all supplements have what it takes.
In one piece from the edgy campaign, a henpecked husband cowers with cartons of milk in his arms.
California Milk Processor Board
July 22, 2011 The California Milk Processor Board pulled the plug on a controversial campaign that positioned milk as a remedy for premenstrual syndrome by appealing to cowering husbands and boyfriends.
July 14, 2011 An edgy marketing campaign from California milk processors touts milk as a remedy for premenstrual symptoms. An independent researcher says there's merit to the claims, but low-fat and skim milk would be the best choices.
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