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Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by kathy, Mar 28, 2008.
I'm having a problem with the milk tasting bitter, can someone please help?
What are you feeding your does?
Bitterness can be caused by a breakdown of fatty acids which are released in the milk fat. It can happen when the milk is agitated, or exposed to sunlight. Do you agitate or shake your milk as it is cooling? Do you cool your milk in glass jars where the sun can shine on them?
Bitter? Any lumps, clots, blood or slime? Does the milk smell ok? Sometimes bad tasting milk can be caused by mastitis.
As Christy stated it also can be caused by a breakdown of fatty acids. The breaking down of fatty acids can also be caused by poor hygiene when handling milk. Make certain pails and hands are clean. Wipe udder and belly down to keep falling hair, dirt or flakes of poop from falling into your milk pail. Make certain any strainers or straining rags are sterilized. Don't use reused plastic jugs to store milk. New plastic jugs or glass jars work great. Cool your milk quickly and get it refrigerated. Some people make the mistake of letting the milk sit while finishing chores and this allows bacteria to grow.
Finally, some goats and some breeds of goats give off flavored milk. If so, you will have to cull for that reason.
I'm feeding them 16%oats, alfalpha hay and black oil sunflower seeds.
Also there are all kinds of new weeds coming up now so could be something in the field.
You might want to offer baking soda free choice to your girls. Seems to balance their Ph and this results in better, more consistent tasting milk. Baking soda also helps the goats to regulate any tummy upsets so helps prevent rumen problems.
I'd take a clean cup out to the barn, and try the milk straight from the goat.. especially if you combine your milk, this will help you isolate the culprit so to speak. If it tastes fine from the goat, then it's a handling issue. If it's the goat, then you have other issues, though some goats just have funky tasting milk.. :/
Do you have a newly freshened doe? We don't drink the milk until 10 days past kidding. This way, it doesn't taste bad to us. The milk we get from the newly freshened doe is for babies only.
That is a good point. Newly freshened does can take up to a couple of weeks for their milk to taste right. How long has she been fresh?
When you say bitter, do you truly mean bitter? I've seen people call sour bitter etc.