Goats milk is easier for digestion, and the meat is lean. Goat produces a unique flavor as well, resulting in special tasting milk and additional products. Meanwhile their milk production is less than that produced by a cow.
A good dairy goat provides between 6 to 12 pounds of milk a day for about a 305-day lactation. A good dairy cow provides almost five times that amount.
It takes more work to maintain a herd of goats than it does a herd of cows, and the same number of cows will yield more milk.
Goats milk is also substituted for cows milk by some people who have allergies to some proteins in cows milk. Both types of milk contain some proteins which are similar, so it is not always suitable for some people with allergies.
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Apart from this the two types of milk are similar in their content of milk sugars, fat and protein. In addition to the whole milk market, goats milk is used for yoghurt and a variety of distinctively different cheeses.
Goat dairies can be good earners, but like any dairy business they must combine good financial management with excellent animal husbandry and farm management skills.
Poor business planning is the main cause of failure in a goat dairy enterprise. A good milking doe will produce milk for ten years, providing about four (4) litres a day at her peak lactation.
Dairy goat production is an alternative livestock enterprise suitable for many small-scale or part-time livestock operations.
The potential also exists for selling milk to processors, usually on a regional basis. Although fluid milk and processed products are important markets, dairy goat producers should also consider the potential for selling animals to hobbyists and youth involved in vocational agriculture livestock projects.
In much of the developing world, goat milk is the primary milk source for humans. Goat milk is often sought for its perceived health benefits and unique taste.
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Although a number of health effects have been attributed to consuming goat milk, scientific evidence does not support most health claims.
Goat milk is similar in composition to cow milk, but some important differences exist in the protein structure.
|Energy (kcal/100 ml)||68.00||69.00||70.00|
|Cholesterol (mg/100 ml)||20.00||15.00||12.00|
|Vitamin A (IU/g fat)||32.00||21.00||39.00|
|Vitamin D (IU/g fat)||0.30||0.70||0.70|
|Vitamin C (mg/100 ml)||3.00||2.00||2.00|
|Thiamin (μg/100 ml)||17.00||45.00||68.00|
|Riboflavin (μg/100 ml)||26.00||159.00||210.00|
|Data from the American Dairy Goat Association|
Abbreviations: kcal/100 ml is a measure of energy content. 1 kcal = 1,000 calories; IU = international unit, a measure of vitamin potency; μg = microgram, 1/1000 milligram
Because of these differences, people who have allergies to cow milk can often drink goat milk, and the fat globules in goat’s milk stay in suspension longer, which leads to the perception of “natural homogenization.”
Goats are good browsers and allowing them to consume plants containing aromatic or flavor compounds can impart the smell or flavor to the milk or cheese, thus providing an opportunity to generate unique specialty products.
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