Books on Raw Milk

Farm Marketing from the Heart

by Charlotte Smith

We often start farming because we love the plants, the animals, the land—but we soon learn love does not pay the bills. Marketing and selling our products can feel like a mystery: How do we get customers to find us? How do we convince them they need our grass-fed beef, raw milk, or veggie-and-flowers CSA?

When you build deep trust with your customers, you create loyal customers who wouldn't think of shopping anywhere else and tell all their friends to shop with you, too, assuring you a strong customer base and taking the mystery out of sales and marketing.

Farm Marketing from the Heart shows you how to make this your reality by combining the right mindset and approach to marketing with a few sophisticated yet easy-to-use online marketing technologies that help you save time and effort, reach and build relationships with your dream customers, and build your thriving and profitable farm.

The Untold Story of Milk

by Ron Schmid, ND

“This is a fascinating and compelling book. The role of milk in the rise of civilization and in early America, the distillery dairies, compulsory pasteurization and the politics of milk, traditional dairying cultures – the chapters on these subjects will change forever the way you think about milk. “‘Betrayal’ and ‘Cholesterol, Animal Fats and Heart Disease - A Modern Myth?’ – these chapters will shock you. And in the final chapters, we learn of how scores of eminent scientists documented the superiority of raw milk and its myriad health benefits, only to be denigrated by propagandists for the processed food industry and their government allies. But raw milk is a movement whose time has come. This book will serve as a catalyst for that movement – a movement that could change the life of every individual who comes to fully understand the value of raw milk from healthy, grassfed animals.”

— SALLY FALLON MORELL , author of Nourishing Traditions and President of the Weston A. Price Foundation


Ron Schmid, ND, naturopathic physician, writer, teacher, and farmer, has prescribed raw milk for his patients for nearly 25 years. Dr. Schmid is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the National College of Naturopathic Medicine and has taught at all four of America’s naturopathic medical schools. He’s the former Clinic Director and Chief Medical Officer at the University of Bridgeport College of Naturopathic Medicine, and the author of Traditional Foods Are Your Best Medicine. Also listen to an audio interview with Ron here.

Ron Schmid and Sally Fallon Morell speak on raw milk


The Art and Science of Grazing: How Grass Farmers Can Create Sustainable Systems fro Healthy Animals and Farm Ecosystems

by Sarah Flack

Livestock grazing consultant Sarah Flack from Vermont has written this great book. She is also the author of three other books about organic dairy production, more information here. Civil Eats recently published a beautiful article about her work: 

"The essence of Flack’s advice is that farmers can use the very process of grazing animals to create healthier soil, more robust pastures, improved animal welfare, and a more financially sustainable operation. Though each farm is different, she promotes a few universal principles, such dividing pasture into paddocks—the more the better—and rotating animals through them. She also advises to graze animals in each paddock for a short period of time and vary the lengths of time each paddock is allowed to recover.

This approach keeps the plants from being grazed too short and gives them enough time to recover, yielding better, more nutritious feed and spurring the growth of more perennial forage. At the same time, the animals’ waste and the tramping action of their hooves helps enrich the soil. Farmers save time and money by having to do less tilling, seeding, and fertilizing of their fields and by having to buy less additional feed to support their livestock.

“It’s the only way I know of where we can actually use the animals to improve ecosystem health,” Flack says. “All of the other forms of livestock agriculture are, to at least a certain degree, mining the ecosystem of resources or relocating them in ways that are not healthy.”"

The Raw Milk Revolution: Behind America's Emerging Battle over Food Rights

by David E. Gumpert

Beginning in 2006, the agriculture departments of several large states-with backing from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration-launched a major crackdown on small dairies producing raw milk. Replete with undercover agents, sting operations, surprise raids, questionable test-lab results, mysterious illnesses, propaganda blitzes, and grand jury investigations, the crackdown was designed to disrupt the supply of unpasteurized milk to growing legions of consumers demanding healthier and more flavorful food.

The Raw Milk Revolution takes readers behind the scenes of the government's tough and occasionally brutal intimidation tactics, as seen through the eyes of milk producers, government regulators, scientists, prosecutors, and consumers. It is a disturbing story involving marginally legal police tactics and investigation techniques, with young children used as political pawns in a highly charged atmosphere of fear and retribution.

Are regulators' claims that raw milk poses a public health threat legitimate? That turns out to be a matter of considerable debate. In assessing the threat, The Raw Milk Revolution reveals that the government's campaign, ostensibly designed to protect consumers from pathogens like salmonella, E. coli 0157:H7, and listeria, was based in a number of cases on suspect laboratory findings and illnesses attributed to raw milk that could well have had other causes, including, in some cases, pasteurized milk.

David Gumpert dares to ask whether regulators have the public's interest in mind or the economic interests of dairy conglomerates. He assesses how the government's anti-raw-milk campaign fits into a troublesome pattern of expanding government efforts to sanitize the food supply-even in the face of ever-increasing rates of chronic disease like asthma, diabetes, and allergies. The Raw Milk Revolution provides an unsettling view of the future, in which nutritionally dense foods may be available largely through underground channels.  

Journalist David E. Gumpert shares the history of pasteurization and its exaggerated health benefits versus the health benefits of raw milk, a living food containing beneficial enzymes.

The Art of Natural Cheesemaking: Using Traditional, Non-Industrial Methods and Raw Ingredients to Make the World's Best Cheeses

by David Asher

Including more than 35 step-by-step recipes from the Black Sheep School of Cheesemaking

Most DIY cheesemaking books are hard to follow, complicated, and confusing, and call for the use of packaged freeze-dried cultures, chemical additives, and expensive cheesemaking equipment. For though bread baking has its sourdough, brewing its lambic ales, and pickling its wild fermentation, standard Western cheesemaking practice today is decidedly unnatural. In The Art of Natural Cheesemaking, David Asher practices and preaches a traditional, but increasingly countercultural, way of making cheese—one that is natural and intuitive, grounded in ecological principles and biological science.

This book encourages home and small-scale commercial cheesemakers to take a different approach by showing them:

  • How to source good milk, including raw milk;
  • How to keep their own bacterial starter cultures and fungal ripening cultures;
  • How make their own rennet—and how to make good cheese without it;
  • How to avoid the use of plastic equipment and chemical additives; and
  • How to use appropriate technologies.

Introductory chapters explore and explain the basic elements of cheese: milk, cultures, rennet, salt, tools, and the cheese cave. The fourteen chapters that follow each examine a particular class of cheese, from kefir and paneer to washed-rind and alpine styles, offering specific recipes and handling advice. The techniques presented are direct and thorough, fully illustrated with hand-drawn diagrams and triptych photos that show the transformation of cheeses in a comparative and dynamic fashion.

The Art of Natural Cheesemaking is the first cheesemaking book to take a political stance against Big Dairy and to criticize both standard industrial and artisanal cheesemaking practices. It promotes the use of ethical animal rennet and protests the use of laboratory-grown freeze-dried cultures. It also explores how GMO technology is creeping into our cheese and the steps we can take to stop it.

This book sounds a clarion call to cheesemakers to adopt more natural, sustainable practices. It may well change the way we look at cheese, and how we make it ourselves.  

The Small-Scale Dairy: The Complete Guide to Milk Production for the Home and Market

By Gianaclis Caldwell

The Small-Scale Dairy includes everything you need to know in order to successfully produce nourishing, healthy, farm-fresh milk. Whether for home use, direct sale to the consumer, or sale to an artisanal cheesemaker, high-quality raw milk is a delicate, desirable product. Successful and sustainable production requires the producer to consider and tackle many details, ranging from animal care to microbiology to good hygienic practices–and, for those with commercial aspirations, business plans, market savvy, and knowledge of the regulations.

Applicable to keepers of cows, goats, or sheep, The Small-Scale Dairy offers a holistic approach that explores the relationships between careful, conscientious management and the production of safe, healthy, and delicious milk. A historical overview offers readers a balanced perspective on the current regulatory environment in which raw milk lovers find themselves.

Included are options for designing a well-functioning small dairy, choosing equipment, and understanding myriad processes—such as the use of low-temperature pasteurization where raw milk sales are prohibited. Whether you have a one-cow home dairy, a fifty-goat operation, or are simply a curious consumer, The Small-Scale Dairy is an accessible and invaluable resource for achieving your goals.

Video:  Running a Small Scale Dairy with Gianaclis Caldwell

The Raw Milk Answer Book: What You REALLY Need to Know About Our Most Controversial Food

by David. E. Gumpert

Finally, a serious and candid conversation about raw milk, unlike any that has ever occurred in the many years since raw milk became a subject of contentious debate. The Raw Milk Answer Book raises the most difficult questions surrounding our most controversial food--about the risk of getting seriously ill, whether it should be fed to children, the credibility of European research indicating raw milk has important healing powers --and answers them in calm, non-ideological terms, understandable to beginners and experienced drinkers alike. It is an engaging conversation, unblinking in its focus on real-world data, unafraid to take issue with wild claims on either side of the raw milk controversy. So controversial is raw milk that obtaining believable information about it has become nearly impossible. On one side, proponents often portray raw milk as a miracle food. In their view, it strengthens the immune system so as to reduce our incidence of health problems small and large--from colds and flu to cancer, diabetes, asthma and allergies--and being extremely safe to boot. On the other side, opponents portray raw milk as having no more health or nutritional value than the pasteurized variety that can be bought in any supermarket. They also view it as one of the most dangerous foods known to mankind--so inherently dangerous it can kill you. Obviously, both sides can’t be correct. What is the real story? 


Keeping a Family Cow: The Complete Guide for Home-Scale, Holistic Dairy Producers

by Joann S. Grohman

The cow is the most productive, efficient creature on earth. She will give you fresh milk, cream, butter, and cheese, build human health and happiness, and even turn a profit for homesteaders and small farmers who seek to offer her bounty to the local market or neighborhood. She will provide rich manure for your garden or land, and will enrich the quality of your life as you benefit from the resources of the natural world. Quite simply, the family that keeps a cow is a healthy family.

Originally published in the early 1970s as The Cow Economy and reprinted many times over, Keeping a Family Cow has launched thousands of holistic small-scale dairy farmers and families raising healthy cows in accordance with their true nature. The book offers answers to frequently asked questions like, 'Should I get a cow?' and 'How Much Space do I need?' in addition to extensive information on:

•    The health benefits of untreated milk;
•    How to milk a cow effectively and with ease;
•    Choosing your dairy breed;
•    Drying off your cow;
•    Details on calving and breeding;
•    The importance of hay quality and how to properly feed your cow;
•    Fencing and pasture management;
•    Housing, water systems, and other supplies;
•    Treating milk fever and other diseases and disorders;
•    Making butter, yogurt, and cheese, and, of course . . .
•    . . . Everything else the conventional dairy industry doesn’t tell us!

Now revised and updated to incorporate new information on the raw milk debate, the conversation about A1 vs. A2 milk, fully grassfed dairies, more practical advice for everyday chores, and updated procedures for cow emergencies.

Keeping a Family Cow has not only stood the test of time, it still remains the go-to inspirational manual for raising a family milk cow nearly forty years after its first publication. Joann Grohman has a lifetime of practical experience that has been bound into this one volume and presented in the spirit of fun and learning.

Video:  Keeping a Family Cow with Joann Grohman

Producing Fresh Milk – Cow Edition

by Farm-to-Consumer-Foundation

Thi book is written by fresh milk and dairy experts from around the world to provide readers with their collective thoughts on important consideration in producing fresh milk. Organised into individual aspects of dairy management, it includes references and resources for additional information. This comprehensive book is relevant reading for current producers, those considering getting into fresh dairy production, as well as for consumers of fresh milk. 

Ten individuals, including farmers, veterinarians, researchers, health professionals and educators, served as members of the expert panel and contributing authors for this publication.

Subcommittee members Tim Wightman, Rebecca Brown, Sharon Wilson and Ted and Peg Beals, as well as Project Manager Lily Dougherty-Johnson worked with Gerald Snyder, Arden Nelson, Marguerita Cattell, Ton Baars, and Joseph Heckman to complete this project.

Using the Guide to Good Dairy Farming Practice, published by the United Nations and the International Dairy Federation, as a starting point the Fresh Milk Production publication was written and reviewed by the aforementioned experts over a period of two years. Read more here.


Raw Milk Production

by Tim Wightman

Raw Milk Production was developed in cooperation with Farm-to-Consumer Legal Defense Fund to guide farmers engaged in small scale, pasture-based raw milk milk production supplied to consumers either through direct sales or through cow-boarding, herd-share or farm-share programs.

The growth of raw milk production has been very rapid during the last several years, reflecting consumer demand for a healthy milk product as well as the considerable economic benefits for the farmer.  Raw milk is thus proving to be a boon to both farmer and consumer, sparking a renewal in small farming in many parts of the country and forging important bonds between farmers and their consumers.  Read more here.

Free Book download:  Raw Milk Production PDF document

Video:  Risks of our Current Food Production Ecosystems - Tim Wightman

Safe Handling – Consumers’ Guide
Preserving the Quality of Fresh, Unprocessed Whole Milk

By Peggy Beals, RN

Who is responsible for the quality of the milk you drink?  For increasing numbers of people, the answer is, “I am.”  The expanded, 32-page edition of Safe Handling offers simple procedures for maintaining the quality of fresh, living (raw) milk to consumers who strive to take responsibility for the food they eat.  It is written for people who want to understand both the how and the why of these procedures.  Safe Handling gives an overview of the best practices of a dairy farm which are in the purview of the farmer.  It then goes on to describe hygienic measures the consumer can follow in the cleaning of milk containers, dispensing and transporting milk, and finally storing milk for consumption at home. Click here to view and buy.

Video:  Creating your own Risk Assessment program - Ted Beals


A Campaign for Real Milk

A project of the Weston. A Price Foundation

The Weston A. Price Foundation has put together a Microsoft PowerPoint presentation that explains many aspects of the raw milk movement.  Click on picture below to download.  Read More.

Click on picture to download PowerPoint presentation. (9.4MB)

Click on picture to download PowerPoint presentation. (9.4MB)