FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Our milk is unique, and we know that health-conscious people like you want to make sure they make the right choice for themselves and their loved ones. We have gathered the most common questions we receive on a regular basis, so you can learn more about Hart Dairy.
Maybe start by listening to Mandy Schulz, our Marketing Manager, and Maggie Reindl, our Operations Manager at the Farms, who tell you more about our milk, cows and farming practices.
ABOUT OUR DELICIOUS MILK
Q: Why does your milk taste so darn good?
Our grass-fed cows feast daily on fresh pasture, dried forage, and fermented hay that aids their digestion. We don’t use GMOs, rBST, growth hormones or synthetic hormones. We just give you the good stuff!
Grass-fed milk tastes differently than conventional milk from confined cows.
The simplest way to put it is that it tastes like milk used to taste before factory farms.
Q: What is pasteurization? And do you pasteurize your milk?
Pasteurization is a process that makes milk safe to drink by killing harmful bacteria. As a public health measure in 1987, the FDA issued a regulation prohibiting the interstate sale of raw milk.
We use Ultra High Temperature (UHT) pasteurization, also known as Ultra-Pasteurization. The raw milk is heated to 290 degrees for 3 seconds, and then quickly chilled back down to 37 degrees.
This process nearly triples the shelf life of conventional pasteurization, allowing our milk to be enjoyed for up to 60 days after the date of pasteurization. And in more good news, research shows there’s no meaningful difference between the nutritional content of pasteurized and unpasteurized milk.
Q: Is your milk Organic?
Good question. It’s one that we get asked every now and then.
The answer is no – and that’s on purpose.
At Hart Dairy, we don’t use GMOs, rBST, antibiotics or synthetic hormones. In order to treat our cows the right way and to put animal welfare at the top of our priorities, the “organic” standard wasn’t good enough.
For example, when one of our cows is sick, we give her medications for her to recover better and faster. Of course, we separate her milk from our production (to ensure her meds never get into the milk) until she’s fully back on track.
Organic factory farms aren’t allowed to treat their sick cows, so simply “remove” them, which is a nicer way to say they are sold for meat or to conventional confined dairy farms.
Organic practices don’t necessarily result in better animal health and welfare.
Also, they do not produce foods that are safer – or nutritionally superior – to non-Organic products.
That’s why Hart Dairy chose to find a better way than just organic.
Q: I can't find Hart Dairy Milk anywhere near me.
First of all, thanks for wanting our milk! We are currently expanding our distribution in many states and become accessible to more American families as time goes.
To find Hart Dairy products in your area, check out our store locator. If we are not yet in your area, please continue to follow us online. We’ll post any updates across our social media sites.
Also, ask for it where you shop by using this Grocer Request Letter, and let your local supermarket know that you’d like them to carry Hart Dairy Creamery products.
ABOUT OUR COWS, FARM, AND PRACTICES
Q: Can I visit the farm?
Thanks for your interest in checking out our farms! We aren’t set up for farm tours right now, but it is something we’re planning to offer to the public down the road. Make sure to follow us on social media @weareharatdairy since that’s where we’ll post big news.
Q: Are you the only farm in the U.S. with cows that are grass-fed and always on-pasture for 365 days a year?
We’re the only national brand able to bring you 365-day pasture-raised and grass-fed milk. There are many local farmers in the United States working very hard 7 days a week to do this too, and we applaud their efforts. If you cannot find our milk in your favorite store, they are definitely your best option.
Q: What does 365 PASTURE-RAISED & FED mean?
Our cows graze on fresh grass and roam free in our fields 365 days a year.
Our southeastern climate is the perfect setting for them to be outside all year long.
In the United States, cows only have to be outside 150 days a year to be labeled grass-fed. That means that they can be confined, have a different diet the rest of the year and still market themselves as grass-fed.
At Hart Dairy, we believe free and happy cows make better milk!
Q: Where is your farm located?
Our farms are located just outside of Augusta, Georgia. That’s the green belt of the United States.
Q: What kind of cows do you have?
Our cows are New Zealand Friesian – Jersey crossbreeds that are smaller – yet more efficient – than the larger USA Holstein cow that you’ll find at most conventional dairy farms.
They are well adapted to a life outdoors, grazing on grass 365 days a year.
They generally live much longer, healthier, and more productive lives than other cows. While our cows do not produce the volume of milk of a US Holstein, the milk is usually much richer in both butterfat and protein than conventional milk. This is partly because of the superior genetics, and partly because of the grass-rich diets that they enjoy all year round.
Also, while American dairy cows live 5 years on average, it is not unusual for our cows to live more than 10 or even 12 years.
Q: What is Certified Humane?
Hart Dairy is the first pasteurized U.S. Dairy Cow Operation to earn the Certified Humane® designation from Humane Farm Animal Care (HFAC). HFAC is the leading international nonprofit certification program, whose mission is to improve the lives of farm animals and drive consumer demand for kinder and more responsible farm animal practices.
This certification requires farmers to adhere to HFAC’s strict Animal Care Standards and undergo third-party inspections to confirm compliance to be certain they:
- Are fed nutritious diets without antibiotics, growth promoters, and animal byproducts.
- Receive proper habitat, resting areas, and sufficient space to support natural behaviors
Q: Are your products Non-GMO?
Yes, they are. We are Non-GMO Project Verified.
Q: What is regenerative agriculture?
Hart Dairy believes very firmly in taking a holistic approach to farming and we are very focused on environmental sustainability and carbon sequestration.
“Regenerative Agriculture” is a holistic land management practice defined by grazing and farming techniques that, among other benefits, reverse climate change resulting in carbon drawdown and improvement in the water cycle. This is accomplished by rebuilding soil organic matter and restoring degraded soil biodiversity.
Simply put, Regenerative Agriculture leverages the power of photosynthesis in plants to close the carbon cycle.
Regenerative agriculture improves soil health which aids in increasing soil biodiversity and health both above and below the soil surface while increasing both water holding capacity and sequestering carbon at greater depths. This results in the sequestration of climate-damaging levels of atmospheric carbon and improving soil structure to reverse human-caused soil loss.
Hart Dairy’s recent acceptance into A Greener World‘s “Certified Regenerative Pilot Program” is another example of how we put our beliefs into practice, and how – every day – we are trying to make Simply. Better. Milk.
Q: What kind of grasses do the cows eat?
We plant different grasses for different seasons and environmental factors, like temperature and rainfall. We also use grasses that are proven to be the best quality for milk cows.
Our summer grasses include:
- Millet – Pearl (annual)
- Bermuda – Tifton 85 (perennial)
- Rye (annual)
- Winter Oats – Horizon (annual)