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Bitter Goat Milk — The Grow Network Community
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Bitter Goat Milk

Megan VenturellaMegan Venturella Posts: 402 ✭✭✭✭
edited November 2020 in Goats & Sheep

This is my fourth year milking Nigerian Dwarf Goats, and the milk has an odd, slightly bitter aftertaste. I've been milking for just a week and a half now. I think maybe not enough minerals, so I've been hand feeding them loose minerals. Also, we switched from a green sprayed hay to an unsprayed yellow hay. That could be part of it, but I thought I'd put it out there in case anyone had advice for me. I added the green hay back in and upped their alfalfa and barley, just because I don't know what I'm doing LOL.

The milk makes fine fresh cheese, but it hasn't been great for drinking, and it is normally unbelievably sweet and delicious.


  • LaurieLovesLearningLaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 3,771 admin

    Do you know what weeds they might be accessing in the hay or otherwise? I remember long ago when our cows got into weeds, the milk that was normally sweet was undrinkable.

  • seeker.nancy - Central Texasseeker.nancy - Central Texas Posts: 802 ✭✭✭✭

    It is most likely what they are eating (weed-wise). That being said, even when my Nubians were stripping the bark off the juniper trees it didn't really affect the taste much. Upping the alfalfa is a good idea because of how it helps the milk quality.

  • Megan VenturellaMegan Venturella Posts: 402 ✭✭✭✭

    Interesting... they don't have access to weeds really because they ate everything down to the nub some time ago, lol. But hopefully the alfalfa will help.

    Wait. There are weeds! Just one kind. Maybe I'm wrong. I'll have to google what they're eating... Thank you!

  • Megan VenturellaMegan Venturella Posts: 402 ✭✭✭✭

    Just an update- It's been six weeks, and the milk tastes pretty good now. I started giving them free choice alfalfa pellets and I give them fresh minerals every day because they are so picky. I also started giving them a choice of two different kinds of hay. The bitter milk actually still made pretty delicious cheese after all, but I'm so relieved we can finally drink it too!

  • seeker.nancy - Central Texasseeker.nancy - Central Texas Posts: 802 ✭✭✭✭

    That's great news @Megan Venturella! It's amazing how alfalfa can "sweeten" the milk. Glad the cheese turned out - that's a lot of work to do if you cannot use it.

  • HassenaHassena Posts: 311 ✭✭✭

    Our goat milk tasted slightly off. We read that kelp can make milk have a funny taste. So we stopped offering kelp. The milk taste much better.

    Glad your milk is getting better.

  • ltwickeyltwickey Posts: 316 ✭✭✭

    I'm so glad your milk is tasty again!! We learned this lesson several years ago as well, the hard way!! All we did was decrease the amount of alfalfa!! Never, ever did that again!!

    I have always been one to have to learn the hard way!! Guess that's where my kids get it from!!

  • Megan VenturellaMegan Venturella Posts: 402 ✭✭✭✭

    @Hassena I gave them lots of kelp while they were pregnant!!!

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