by Maggi Thomas
What is the difference between raw milk and organic milk? Which one is better? This is something that has bewildered many people in recent years. It is something that has been talked about a lot more than ever before as people are becoming far more health conscious then in the past. Many are unsure of the difference between the two. There has been a lot of talk about the benefits of raw milk recently, and a big dairy is pushing the Organic Milk so what is the difference between the two?

Many people think that organic milk is the better choice when it comes to their health. This is not the case when you take a close look into the differences between the two types of milk. Organic does NOT always mean better and you will get a better understanding of this as we go further along.

The differences between raw milk and the organic milk are huge! Raw milk is the one that comes directly from the source which may be a cow, buffalo or a goat. It is not heated or subjected to any other treatment. Organic milk on the other hand undergoes a process called pasteurization. This means that the milk has been heated for a specified time period to kill the harmful bacteria that is supposedly present in the milk. Milk that is pasteurized for an even longer time is called Ultra pasteurized.

The safety of the milk that you drink will depend a lot on the source. Raw milk from a huge dairy that supplies the large supermarkets would NOT be recommended. The workers are well aware of the pasteurization process that the milk will be put through which will kill any harmful bacteria that may be present in the milk and they are not as careful about hygiene.

Most of the large dairies do not have the best health practices. These farms feed their livestock a lot of high protein poor quality feed stock. This may be a benefit to the farmer but is NOT good for the cow at all. Many of the cows are also kept in small areas and often surrounded by their own feces. These dairies seem to ignore these things as they know that the pasteurization process will be happening and will kill any harmful organisms that may be present. Even though the harmful organisms are killed they still remain in the milk.

Pasteurization not only kills the harmful organisms it also kills any good organisms and beneficial bacteria that may be present. This makes the milk that you get from these dairies pretty much useless in nutritional value. The same goes for the organic milk that we talk of. In spite of the healthy practice that they follow in producing organic milk, the pasteurization process leaves little or no nutrients in the milk.

On the other hand, milk that comes from grass fed cows that are well looked after in sanitary conditions is very safe for a person to drink raw. Jersey and Guernsey cows are considered ‘Old World’ cows and there milk contains a cofactor in it that makes the raw milk much more healthy. Drink as much of this kind that you want without worrying. All the healthy parts remain in the milk and the benefits to your own health are great as well.

There are quite a few differences between the two types of milk when you think about it. Most notable is the food and care that the cows receive. Not to mention the taste of the raw milk! The difference in the taste between the two is immense. If you doubt this then find a family run dairy in your area that is milking Jersey or Guernsey cows and try some for yourself. You will be amazed!

5 Comments so far »

  1. by Marie Black, on August 29 2012 @ 2:28 am


    This is a weird article. Organic raw milk would be the best milk as organic standard limits the amount of compounds the cow can eat so organic milk high in Omega 6. The person who wrote this article doesn’t seem to understand farming systems. Pasteurization affects the composition of the milk but not the nutritional quality.
    Marie, that is just the kind of miss information that so many people are getting. Much of the Organic milk on the market is UHT Milk. That is the milk is ultra heat treated. This is the worst kind of milk for those that are Lactose intolerant. After the organic milk is ultra heat treated, pasteurized, and homogenized there is nothing left worth talking about. Fresh Raw Milk will have a lower harmful bacteria count than the UHT organic milk.

  2. by Telly Hendon, on August 25 2014 @ 10:14 am


    Raw milk can be tricky as my family found out first hand. Pasteurized at least indicates it is treated and milk should not be drunk for nutritional reasons anyway. Milk is for little cows and in to bake cakes… not for drinking. The human system can’t even process it properly.
    Telly that is very true. You want to see the cows and the farm that the raw milk comes from and I would not drink it unless the cows were Jersey or Guernsey. The human system does very well with these old world cows milk.

  3. by Megan Watkins, on January 16 2017 @ 7:42 am


    Thanks for your wisdom. You answered my question very well.

  4. by Larry Williams, on June 2 2017 @ 3:40 pm


    We are leaning more toward raw milk from our local neighbor, v.s., buying “Organic” milk from the supermarket. BUT, our milk lady admits she feeds her cows GMO feed and has no qualms about it.
    Which way to go?!?!

  5. by, on June 3 2017 @ 10:16 pm


    Hi Larry, It is up to you as to how far you want to take it. If everything else is in good shape then a little GMO feed is not that bad. First I would not drink anyone’s raw milk unless it came from Jersey cows. The dairy I buy from has there cows on good quality pasture and supplements with high quality Alfalfa grass hay. These cows get a little grain while they are being milked twice a day. If she has Holstein cows I would avoid it completely. This is a new world cow who’s milk was never intended to be consumed raw.

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