Dairy Council Northern Ireland

Milk it for all it's worth


Industry

From Grass To Glass

Milking

The cow is then milked, and this will most often take place in a milking parlour.

How are cows milked?

When a cow enters the milking parlour her teats are washed and the dairy farmer fits four teat cups to them. The milking machine then copies the natural sucking of a calf, gently sucking the milk from the cow’s udder.

When the milk leaves the cow’s udder (at around 38°C) it flows into a glass jar which measures the amount of milk given.

The milk is then pumped through pipes into a large refrigerated tank called a vat, where it is cooled (to around 4°C) and stored until it is collected and brought to the dairy.

When milking is complete the cow’s teats are washed again. The milking parlour is then thoroughly cleaned for the next milking session…most cows will be milked twice a day.

Although this is the traditional method used to milk cows, a growing number of dairy farms have robotic milking parlours. These parlours use automated machines to milk the cows. 

Did you know?

Dairy cows in Northern Ireland produced around 2.2 billion litres of milk in 2016.

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From the farm to the fridge, the Dairy Council for Northern Ireland acts on behalf of the dairy industry, advertising and promoting the natural goodness and quality of Northern Ireland milk and dairy products.

Our primary function is to communicate factual information to allow individuals to make well informed choices about dairy products that they consume and to inform them of the benefits of including dairy products in a balanced diet. We use a wide range of media, which includes television, radio, press, magazine, posters and the internet. Our Advertising is complemented by public relations and promotional activities designed to communicate with specific groups.

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