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Cool Dairy Facts


●  It takes more cows to produce milk annually for Pizza Hut cheese (about 170,000) than there are people living in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

●  Cows have an acute sense of smell, and can smell something up to six miles away.

●  Vanilla is America's favorite ice cream flavor.

●  The average cow produces enough milk each day to fill six one-gallon jugs, about 55 pounds of milk.

●  Each person in America eats an average of 46 slices of pizza a year.

●  All 50 states in the United States have dairy farms.

●  The natural yellow color of butter comes mainly from the beta-carotene found in the grass cows eat.

●  The average cow drinks from 30 - 50 gallons of water each day - about a bathtub's worth.

●  It takes 12 pounds of whole milk to make one gallon of ice cream.

●  A cow can't vomit.

●  It is possible to lead a cow upstairs but not downstairs, because a cow's knees can't bend properly to walk back down.

●  The greatest amount of milk produced in one year was 59,298 lbs by a Holstein cow named Robthom Sue Paddy.

●  Dairy cows can produce 125 lbs of saliva a day.

●  A cow chews her cud (regurgitated, partially digested food) for up to 8 hours each day.

●  The oldest cow ever recorded was a cow named "Big Bertha", she died 3 months short of her 49th birthday on New Year's Eve, 1993.  She also holds the record for lifetime breeding as she produced 39 calves.

●  A cow has to be a mom before she will produce milk.

●  Contrary to popular belief, cows do not have 4 stomachs; they have 4 digestive compartments in one stomach:

                ●  The rumen holds up to 50 gallons of partially digested food.  This is where cud comes from.  Good bacteria in the rumen                        helps digest the cow's food and provides protein for the cow.

                ●  The reticulum is called the hardware stomach because if cows accidentally eat hardware (like a piece of fencing scrap), it                         will often lodge here causing no further damage.

                ●  The omasum is sort of like a filter.

                ●  The abomasum is like our stomach.
●  Cows only have teeth on the bottom in the front.  They do have molars on both top and bottom in the back.

Fun Michigan Dairy Facts

Michigan’s dairy industry provides nutritious foods produced and processed locally while making a significant economic impact on communities across the state.

Here are some fun facts about one of our state’s largest agricultural industries:

  • Michigan’s dairy industry provides jobs, employing local veterinarians, equipment dealers, and farm employees. One dollar spent locally generates twice as much income for the local economy.

  • Michigan has nearly 1,500 dairy farm families who care for over 428,000 cows.

  • The average dairy herd in Michigan has 300 cows. Just like businesses grow to support more families, herd sizes increase to allow the next generation to continue farming.

  • 97% of Michigan dairy farms are family owned, many by multiple generations of the same family.

  • In 2017, Michigan ranked 5th place in milk production in the U.S. Dairy cows in Michigan produced 11.2 billion pounds of milk.

  • The average Michigan cow produces 25,957 pounds of milk each year. That’s just over 3,000 gallons of milk!

  • Milk in Michigan is local! Michigan’s nearly 1,500 dairy farms produce more than enough milk to supply the entire state. Surplus milk is exported to help meet demand in other states.

  • In supermarkets and local farmers markets, you can find milk, cheese, and yogurt produced by milk from Michigan dairy farmers. When you buy Michigan dairy foods, you not only “buy local” and support area farmers… you buy quality.

  • Only 1.7 % of the U.S. population produces food for all of us, plus millions worldwide.

Facts taken from Milk Means More 

 If you want to learn more about milk here in Michigan please visit

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