Nowadays people are in doubt about whether we should be consuming dairy products or not. As the rise of soy and oat milk has been equivalent to Sauron trying to take over the Middle Earth, some hobbits are still left to give the world hope for clearer skies.
But this story is not a happy ending one. From 2001 to 2013, when the last dairy farm survey(by my understanding) had taken place, the numbers had gone down a whopping 700 percent. And this is a four year old survey. I really do not want to get into numbers, but that is a fucking lot of dairy kingdoms people have built that now are slowly but glorily fading away into pictures and stories, that our grandchildren might not even hear.
I have been around cows my whole childhood. I have helped them give birth and I have handed gloves to a vet cleaning out a rotting wound the size of a melon. I have stood next to a newborn, my finger up hes mouth, so he would get comfort thinking hes sucking his mamas teat. Drinking warm milk fresh from the udder has fulfilled me with a deep respect against these “helpless” creatures. Now tell me, how much do you respect your soy?
I know all of the dairy production is not the greenest way to get some fat in your diet, but it is really hard to explain this shit to people who think that coconut oil is much greener than palm oil. It is hard to explain this shit to people who have never ever spent time in a small dairy farm. These are things you can not really read about to understand. One needs to live through this. But the opportunity of experiencing this is getting smaller by the year. In fact, it has declined a staggering 700 percent already. What if I told you, that there is 700 percent less chance for you to remain drinking oat and soy milk. Sounds stupid right?
Of course, the main reason why small dairy farms are becoming extinct, is the slapping hand of big producers. It is not wise or profitable to keep under 300 cows. And that amount is the tipping point where the humanity is taken out of the whole thing. As I walked out of the milking room today, I knew every single name of the 58 cows that were milked. Not only the “special” ones were named, but all of them. Belive me, nobody is going to name 300 cows.
Small farmers have a connection with their animals, which can not be put into words. One of the farm owners I am currently visiting said, that she is not going to even look out of the window when the cows are loaded on 3 big trucks next week to transport them to Poland. From where, the milk of the same cows is probably somehow going to end up on our tables again. This is cruelty for me, not the way farmers treat their animals. The farmers only fault is that they did not have enough cows to make it.
Tomorrow I am going to take a last look on those cows and with that, I am saying goodbye to a big chunk of my childhood. If this is not sad, then I do not know what is.