I was selling goat milk.  In North Carolina, it is legal to sell milk for animal consumption.  What people did with the milk once they got home with it is not my concern … until they start questioning the freshness, complaining that it went sour too quickly, want it delivered to their homes or complain that one bottle didn’t taste quite as good as the last.

Well, such is the nature of raw milk.  My goats are not confined in a dry lot fed only high protein pellets and alfalfa hay.  Sure, they get grain when they are being milked and have access to alfalfa hay, but during the day, they are outside browsing and grazing.  What they eat is going to change the flavor of the milk.

I think a number of these people thought the milk came from faucet and that they could call any day they wanted milk and either have it delivered or come and get it.  I’d tell them that they didn’t understand that I had to milk these goats, on a schedule, and when I did milk them, I’d only get two or three gallons.  How can I keep milk on hand when they are complaining about the freshness?

Do you know how much room six or eight half-gallon jars of milk takes up in my refrigerator?  Even just keeping that number of jars in the refrigerator overnight is a hardship.  We did consider buying another refrigerator to keep the milk in, but we already have three freezers chewing through electricity, why add another refrigerator?

So, I sent an e-mail to all of my customers telling them that I would no longer be selling milk.  I can hear the pigs jumping up and down with glee because they’ll get the excess milk.

I can see why small farmers can’t/don’t stay in business.  Pleasing individuals who are spoiled by what is available in grocery stores is difficult, to say the least.  It’s a good thing I didn’t commit to selling vegetables this year because my garden is toast from the heat.  At least we are getting a good amount of rain today, but it’s too late for the garden.  It’s the pasture I’m worried about now.

Yesterday, I looked at a horse that was available for free lease for a year.  Oh, he’s nice and I think his owner is going to let me take him with the option to buy him at the end of the lease.  What a difference between this horse and Merlin … he stands still when you put a saddle on him!!!!  I’m sure there will be some things about him that are difficult to put up with, but hopefully it will be minor.  He is a purebred Arabian, has been well started under saddle and a really sweet boy.  The girl who has him is a very accomplished rider and trainer.  She’ll be a good resource.

Until later …