Moose milk

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A milkmaid at the Kostroma Moose Farm in Kostroma Oblast, Russia prepares to milk a moose Milkmaid-and-Moose-Cow-hp4080.jpg
A milkmaid at the Kostroma Moose Farm in Kostroma Oblast, Russia prepares to milk a moose
Collecting moose milk at Kostroma Moose Farm in Russia Moose-Machine-Milking-ss87-810.jpg
Collecting moose milk at Kostroma Moose Farm in Russia

Moose milk, also known as elk milk, refers to milk produced by moose (Alces alces). Though it is most commonly consumed by moose calves, its production has also been commercialised in Russia, Sweden and Canada.


Nutritional content

Moose milk is high in butterfat (10%) and solids (21.5%), according to data collected on Russian moose; research into American moose milk is in a less advanced state than in Russia, but appears to indicate that American moose have even higher concentrations of solids in their milk. [1] Moose lactate between June and August; conditional on a good supply of high quality forage, nutrient and fat concentrations in the milk typically increase during the first twenty-five days of lactation, which are considered the peak period; nutrients, fat, and mineral element concentrations decrease for the remainder of the lactation period. [2] However, compared to cow milk, moose milk still has much higher levels of aluminium, iron, selenium, and zinc. [3]

Farming and sale

Moose milk is commercially farmed in Russia; one sanitorium, the Ivan Susanin Sanitorium, even serves moose milk to residents in the belief that it helps them recover from disease or manage chronic illness more effectively. [4] Some Russian researchers have recommended that moose milk could be used for the prevention of gastroenterological diseases in children, due to its lysozyme activity. [5] The Elk House (Älgens Hus) farm in Bjurholm, Sweden, run by Christer and Ulla Johansson is believed to be the world's only producer of moose cheese. It has three milk-producing moose, whose milk yields roughly 300 kilograms of cheese per year; the cheese sells for about US$1,000 per kilogram. [6] A disturbed moose cow's milk dries up, so it can take up to 2 hours of milking in silence to get the full 2 litre yield. [7] Russian moose researcher Alexander Minaev had also previously tried to make moose cheese, but he stated that, due to the milk's high protein content, the cheese became hard far too quickly. He was not aware of any attempts to make moose ice cream. [8]

See also

Related Research Articles

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Moose A genus of mammals belonging to the deer, muntjac, roe deer, reindeer, and moose family of ruminants

The moose or elk (Eurasia), Alces alces, is a member of the New World deer subfamily and is the largest and heaviest extant species in the deer family. Most adult male moose have distinctive broad, palmate antlers; most other members of the deer family have antlers with a dendritic ("twig-like") configuration. Moose typically inhabit boreal forests and temperate broadleaf and mixed forests of the Northern Hemisphere in temperate to subarctic climates. Hunting and other human activities have caused a reduction in the size of the moose's range over time. It has been reintroduced to some of its former habitats. Currently, most moose occur in Canada, Alaska, New England, New York State, Fennoscandia, the Baltic states, and Russia.


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Dairy farming

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Breast milk

Breast milk or mother's milk is milk produced by mammary glands located in the breast of a human female to feed a young child. Breast milk is the primary source of nutrition for newborns before they are able to eat and digest other foods; older infants and toddlers may continue to be breastfed, but solid foods should be introduced in combination starting from six months of age.

Dairy cattle

Dairy cattle are cattle cows bred for the ability to produce large quantities of milk, from which dairy products are made. Dairy cows generally are of the species Bos taurus.

Goat milk

Goat milk is the milk of domestic goats.

Camel milk Milk produced by female camels

Camel milk has supported Bedouin, nomad and pastoral cultures since the domestication of camels millennia ago. Herders may for periods survive solely on the milk when taking the camels on long distances to graze in desert and arid environments. The camel dairy farming industry has grown in Australia and the United States, as an environmentally-friendly alternative to cow dairy farming using a species well-adapted to arid regions.

Pechora-Ilych Nature Reserve

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Kostroma Moose Farm

Kostroma Moose Farm is an experimental farm in Kostroma Oblast, Russia, where a herd of moose is kept, primarily for milk production; the farm supplies moose's milk to a nearby sanitorium. It is located near the village of Sumarokovo in Krasnoselsky District of Kostroma Oblast, some 25 km east of the city of Kostroma.

The dry matter or dry weight is a measurement of the mass of something when completely dried.

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Sheep milk

Sheep's milk is the milk of domestic sheep. It is commonly used to make cultured dairy products such as cheese. Some of the most popular sheep cheeses include feta (Greece), ricotta (Italy), and Roquefort (France).

Fromager dAffinois

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Norwegian Red

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Moose cheese is cheese created from moose milk. Varieties of moose cheese are produced in Sweden by Christer and Ulla Johansson at their location called "Moose House" or "Elk House". Three varieties of moose cheese are produced.

Pig milk

Pig milk is milk from pigs, and is typically consumed by piglets. It is similar in composition to cow's milk, though higher in fat and more watery. Pig milk is seldom obtained for human uses and is not considered to be a viable agricultural product. Several attempts have been made to produce pig milk cheese, some of which have been successful.

Moose cavalry

Moose cavalry are military units of cavalrymen mounted on moose rather than the more usual horses. There are legends that state that the Mansi people of Western Siberia rode moose into battle but there is no evidence of this. In 17th-century Sweden Charles XI trialled the use of moose as a replacement for horses, which had to be imported. However they proved susceptible to disease, hard to feed and fearful of the sound of gunfire. The use of moose cavalry by the Soviets in the Winter War of 1939 and 1940 is also reported but seems to stem from a 2010 Popular Mechanics April Fools' Day article.

Dry cow

A dry cow refers to a dairy cow that is in a stage of their lactation cycle where milk production ceases prior to calving. This part of their lactation cycle is referred to as the cows dry period and typically last between 40 and 65 days. Dry cows are typically divided into two groups: far-off and close-up. Once the cow has entered this stage, producers will seal the cows teat while following a veterinarian recommended, dry cow therapy for their herd. This dry period is a critical part of their lactation cycle and is important for the cows health, the newborn calf and future milk production as it allows the cow time to rest, eat and prepare for birth. During this time the cow will produce colostrum for the newly born calf.


  1. Geist, Valerius (1998), Deer of the World: Their Evolution Behaviour and Ecology, Stackpole Books, p. 157, ISBN   0-8117-0496-3
  2. Chalyshev, Aleksandr V.; Badlo, Larisa P. (January 2002). "Nutrient composition of milk from domesticated taiga moose during the lactation period" (PDF). Alces. Supplement 2: 41–44. Archived from the original (PDF) on November 7, 2017.
  3. Franzmann, Albert W.; Flynn, Arthur; Arneson, Paul D. (April 1976). "Moose milk and hair element levels and relationships". Journal of Wildlife Diseases. 12 (2): 202–207. doi:10.7589/0090-3558-12.2.202. PMID   933310. S2CID   37773358.
  4. Grocott, Jeff (24 December 1994), "Elk's Milk: Good for What Ails You", The Moscow Times, retrieved 2007-08-27
  5. Dorofeĭchuk VG, Kelekeeva MM, Makarova IB, Tolkacheva NI (1987), "[Protective properties of moose's milk and perspectives of its use in pediatric gastroenterology]", Vopr Pitan (in Russian) (5): 33–5, PMID   3439068.
  6. "Moose milk makes for unusual cheese", The Globe and Mail, 26 June 2004, archived from the original on 7 January 2008, retrieved 2007-08-27
  7. Nobel, Carmen (2009-07-08). "Moody Moose Make $420 Cheese: Big Spender". . Retrieved 2010-02-07.
  8. "Moose Milking", National Public Radio, 28 June 2003, retrieved 2007-08-27