[Sca-cooks] OOP PETA's Suggestion to Ben and Jerry

Lady Celia CeliadesArchier at cox.net
Sun Sep 28 10:50:12 PDT 2008

Stefan said: 
<<I can't see that this latest campaign will help PETA's cause any.>>

It doesn't.  Most of their publicity stunts don't help their cause.  They're
so ridiculously over the top, that they're most likely to drive the rational
people who would be sympathetic with their cause far, far away.   

<<Human milk is likely to be healthier, especially for babies, than  
cow's milk or formulas, but is human milk even available for babies  
that could use it? There are mothers who can't provide enough milk  
themselves or have other reasons they can't nurse.  I don't know if  
my mom ever nurse me considering it was the late 50s and I was born 6  
weeks premature.>>

See, that's the assumption of most of the folks who are viewing the video,
(that making ice cream out of mother's milk would take that mother's milk
away from babies, because women can't produce enough milk) but that's
because of lack of education about natural nursing in our culture.  It is
true that some women cannot produce enough milk for the child they have, but
the most common reasons for this are caused by the  fact that the mother
herself is not educated as to breast feeding since the most common reasons
are improper latch (the infant not connecting properly to the nipple), and
not feeding or pumping frequently enough.  There are other reasons, but they
are rarer. There are also rare cases where the mother produces plenty of
milk, but the milk is lacking in colostrum, and thus are not able to
breastfeed because the newborn gets insufficient nutrition even though
they're feeding (that was my case - my mother had to abandon breast feeding
with me because I was eating constantly and not getting any nourishment),
but that would not affect whether or not B&J could get enough mother's milk
to support creating mother's milk ice cream... it's just an interesting

Since under normal circumstances, the more milk a woman 'expresses' (through
breast feeding or pumping), the more she will 'manufacture' (which is how
women with twins and triplets are able to feed them all when needful), it
would certainly be possible to get extra breast milk.  Another little known
fact in this country is that a woman can also generally (baring some type of
illness or other impacting factor) continue to 'manufacture' breast milk for
years, as long as she continues to breast feed or otherwise 'express' the
milk (i.e., by pumping.) Women in many countries breastfeed much longer than
we do here, and it's not uncommon in those countries to breastfeed well into
the toddler stage (where here we generally wean as soon as the infant begins
teething because women choose not to tolerate breast feeding a teething
infant), but there are even a few cultures where women allow the child to
wean itself, and I've heard of situations where young adults were still
breast feeding occasionally (although I haven't been able to confirm those
anecdotal stories.)  The current medical recommendation seems to be for
natural weaning
.  There's an interesting paper on a study done on what the "true" natural
weaning average would be if cultural standards didn't apply here:

But I think that's enough of that point, my point being simply that a
healthy woman, if there are not preventing factors, can produce excess milk
for an extended length of time by simply continuing to express her milk
regularly, so yes, becoming a "mother's milk producer" would be a possible
job.  The guy in Switzerland who started cooking with breast milk offered "3
pounds for just over 14 ounces",
rant-to-serve-meals-cooked-with-human-breast-milk.html so it doesn't sound
like it could be a full time job, but it might be a little side industry.
Or perhaps, if items made with mother's milk became popular, the price would
go sky high (like truffles :) and it would become a lucrative industry. 

<<Can human milk even be made into things like ice cream, cheese or  
other milk products?  I seem to remember us discussing that the milk  
of certain animals can't be easily made into cheese, butter or other  
products. I can't remember which animals or which products right now,  

It apparently can.  According to these articles: 

The owner of the Swiss restaurant who is currently cooking with it says that
he always adds a bit of whipped cream for consistency, though... so don't
know if that should be considered "cheating" :) There are other articles out
there about food items made with mother's milk if you want to search for
them (here's another one:
date .) 

So, yes... it can be done, and as with most of the "repulsive" food we've
talked about in the past, most of the revulsion comes from cultural bias.  

I'll leave someone else to research wet nursing in the middle ages. 

~ Celia

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