The consumption of dairy products is very widespread in our society. Liquid or powdered milk, cream, yogurt and butter are just a few of the products that are consumed in the West.
Spain is the 7th biggest producer of cow’s milk in the European Union, 1st producer of sheep’s milk and 2nd producer of goat’s milk.
Around the world there are about 370 million cows and buffalos being exploited for their milk. It’s the same for sheep and goats, gregarious animals that need to live in a herd, creating strong links with others and recognising all the members of the group. In livestock farms insemination of female goats is artificial, and they have approximately one birth a year. Their offspring barely live 45 days in order to produce the coveted meat of the suckling kid.
In Spanish livestock farms cows, which are highly sensitive animals, are kept alive for 6-7 years and made to have 4-5 pregnancies, each lasting 9 months. In most cases the calf is separated from the mother 24 hours after birth (this time period varies from 6 hours to 21 days depending on the farm), the milk is destined for sale and to have the calf feeding its mother’s milk is not economically viable. Contrary to what many people think there are no “milking cows”, just mothers who produce milk after having given birth to their calves.
There are more and more substitutes for dairy products on offer which cause no harm whatsoever to animals. At FAADA we encourage you to discover them and incorporate them into your life and your dietary habits. They can have a positive impact on you, on the animals and on the planet.
For more information about how animals live on dairy farms in Spain, keep reading our reports.