By Robert Cohen Executive Director Text Only



Today is day #4 of National Dairy Month. Seeking an
appropriate method of paying my respects to America's dairy
industry, I've decided to report the contents of an old
issue of Hoard's Dairyman, the dairy farmer's magazine.

In June of 1959, I was counting the days, looking forward to
school's end and the start of summer vacation. The front
cover of the June 25, 1959 issue of Hoard's has an imprinted
map of the United States announcing  "June is Dairy Month."
This milk promotion program has been going on for a long

While America was being conned by milk ads, what truths were
dairy insiders reading?

Opening the front cover of the June 25, 1959 issue, the
reader finds a full page ad for:

"The NEW Teramycin for mastitis" treatment.

The ad copy reveals that the NEW Pfizer drug controls ten or
more kinds of mastitis germs causing infections. Infections?
Germs? If only Americans knew what was going on with those
udders in 1959. Four decades later, most milk consumers are
still in the dark. In 2001, the cost of mastitis control per
cow will exceed $200 per year. That's over $2 billion
dollars of drugs in their bodies and yours.

The inside rear cover of the 1959 issue of Hoard's contains
a full page ad for what's marketed as a "hidden drug
treatment," American Cyanamid's Aureomycin, an antibiotic
that was once placed in animal feed. The ad copy lets
dairymen know:

   "Grass alone can't give your cows all the food values
they need for sustained high production. When you're feeding
cows... an effective antibiotic in the ration becomes more

Cows were fed antibiotics for generations, and few people
outside of the industry knew. Little boys and girls, myself
included, were fed these same antibiotics, day after day.

Here's a nice June quote by which dairy farmers can
celebrate their special month. The following appeared in the
June, 1999 issue of a peer-reviewed scientific journal, Food
Protein (Volume 62):

   "The administration of subtherapeutic doses of
antibiotics to livestock introduces selective pressures that
may lead to the emergence and dissemination of resistant
bacteria. The present findings clearly demonstrate that
antibiotic-resistant bacteria in beef and milk pose a
serious problem."

Today, little boys and girls cannot be treated for
infections because antibiotics no longer work.  Doctors are
blamed for oversubscribing medicines.  This is plain
nonsense. New strains of germs grew within cows and
developed immunities to antibiotics. If one takes
antibiotics every day, and drinks antibiotic-laced milk
containing germs with immunities, one will gain nothing by
taking those same antibiotics to treat human infection.

The cover pictures a herd of cows, later identified as a 60-
cow champion herd averaging 9,557 pounds of milk per animal.
That averages out to 12.4 quarts of milk per cow per day.
In 1959, the average cow produced just 8 quarts of milk each
day. Today, the average milk production per animal is 24.5

Some things have changed. Others remain the same. Got

Happy National Dairy Month.

Robert Cohen author of:   MILK A-Z
Executive Director (
Dairy Education Board

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