Is there pus in milk?


March 5, 2013 by Carrie Mess

fire cow meme

So recently I have received messages from several people about some very wrong information that is floating around the internet. Of course I feel the need to get the correct information out there. As you can guess by my blog post, it has to do with the idea that there is pus in milk.

Is there pus in regular milk? NO!  Is there pus in Organic milk?  NO! 

Just like the idea that chocolate milk is made out of bloody milk, this one is way wrong.

I debated about including this. I don't want to spread the manure that is but I want to show just how vile the propaganda is from the anti milk activists.

I debated about including this. I don’t want to spread the manure that is trying to sell, but I want to show just how vile the propaganda is from the anti milk activists.

So let’s look at some basic science here. What is a “pus cell”? Pus is made up of dead white blood cells, bacteria and dead skin cells. Gross right? That’s what the anti milk people want you to think about when they spout their bologna. So, there really isn’t a single “pus cell” like this charming infographic would like you to believe, instead pus is a combination of things. A white blood cell is a normal part of blood. White blood cells are not pus. There are white blood cells in milk, In the dairy industry we closely monitor what we call the somatic cell count (SCC) of our cows and our milk. Somatic cell count (SCC) is a measurement of how many white blood cells are present in the milk. White blood cells are the infection fighters in our body and so an elevated white blood cell presence or on a dairy farm an elevated SCC is a signal that there may be an infection that the cow is fighting.

Dairy farmers are paid more money for milk that has a low SCC, if our cell count raises above normal levels they will dock the amount we get paid for our milk, if it raises even higher they stop taking our milk and we can’t sell it. So not only do we not want our cows to be sick, it would cost us a lot of money and could cost us our farms if we were to ignore a high SCC. Recently the dairy industry lowered the acceptable SCC level from 750 to 400. Most dairy farms aim for a SCC under 200. So does this mean that we are allowing some pus into your milk? No. All milk is going to have some white blood cells in it, that’s the nature of a product that comes from an animal, cells happen. It does’t matter if it’s organic milk or regular milk. The presence of some white blood cells in milk certainly doesn’t mean that the animal is sick or the milk is of poor quality. Again, white blood cells are normal. Additionally when you buy milk from the store it has been pasteurized which kills off any white blood cells or bacteria that are present in the raw milk.

So the anti milk folks want to you to be grossed out by milk, but think about this… A steak has white blood cells in it, because it has blood and white blood cells are a part of that. The anti milk people aren’t going around saying that your steak has pus in it because we can see with our own eyes that it doesn’t. However, since we can’t see into our milk like we can see a steak, anti milk activists use bad science to scare you into believing their view point and that’s just not right!

Instead of using facts to persuade people to not drink milk they are literally trying to make you terrified to eat or drink anything beyond what they feel you should be eating and drinking. It’s time to take back our food from the activists and let them know that it is not ok to use false information to slander a food they don’t agree with. My cows are mad and so am I!

As far as the casein goes in the photo above, a human’s breast milk’s protein is 20-45% casein. If it’s so toxic I think there would be a lot less people in this world because we wouldn’t have survived infancy with all that toxic milk around.

Help me spread the word. Share this post with your friends and let’s get this lie exposed for what it is, bad science used by people with an agenda.

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34 thoughts on “Is there pus in milk?

  1. Carrie! I love this post. Thanks for telling us the truth about what is REALLY in milk.

    My daughter had some chocolate milk this morning. Its good to know that I am still a good mother. ;)

  2. It’s a shame you have to take your valuable time to defend against lies…. but thank you for defending this product. I am reblogging so others can be informed.

  3. Reblogged this on retiredruth – Life in the 50's and beyond and commented:
    I am reblogging so the truth about milk is not overpowered by propaganda and lies. Carrie tells it like it is…..

  4. Michelle says:

    Do you know where I can find a chart about hormones in our food? I have been talking to some people and they think that milk has so many hormones in it and don’t want to drink it. Yet those same people are not opposed to birth control pills, etc. I know there is more estrogen in lettuce than in milk, but I cannnot find the info (link, etc.).

  5. beebeesworld says:

    I remember having a breast infection when one of my babies was very small-the dr told me to squeeze out any pus at the beginning and nurse the baby like crazy-it wouldnt hurt him and would heal me-it worked. he said the baby would get antibiotics I was taking through my milk-the cow story brought that back-ive always thought of the “PPM” aspect of canned foods-the parts of insects per million grains of food or something like that…yum beebeesworld

  6. oregongreen says:

    This is what I did during college, tested & pastuerized milk for the award winning Cougar Gold Cheese. My nose was even part of the quality control as I made sure to smell the milk each morning for an “off” smell before I picked it up. Yes I was a milk truck driver too. One morning I smelled a heavy bleach smell, they had used to much sanitizer to clean out tank or not waited long enough prior to the milk being put in there. Just example of quality controls along the way.

  7. Maxi says:

    This is ludicrous. Common sense tells me that there are standards in place for milk production. Besides, I have been drinking milk all my life … ain’t sick yet.

    Thank you for sharing the truth. There is always misinformation floating around the Internet and those who accept fiction without checking out the facts.

    blessings ~ maxi

  8. Another great post Carrie! Thanks for sharing the truth.

  9. Diane says:

    Great explanation and article! Thanks for what you do!

  10. Thanks Carrie. Great blog.

  11. Thank you for posting this! I just had this conversation the other day with a woman that was telling me that she would never drink “pus milk”. She didn’t realize I was a dairy farmer & I set your straight… on her facts. Too late though… the damage was already done. Sad that people make choices based on false info. Keep up the good work! Love your page & follow it even if I am not doing mine anymore. :)

  12. Tracee Carroll says:

    I think you need to read the book, “Whitewashed: The Disturbing Truth About Cow’s Milk and Your Health” by. Joseph Keon. “Pus” aside, please do further research about the effects of human beings drinking the milk designed for a calf as an adult human being. Research what is needed to digest milk and why is unhealthy in many ways. Also, compare the bone health of the U.S., and other countries which consume cow’s milk with countries who don’t… there is current scientific research that shows that drinking cow’s milk is actually detrimental to your health unless you are a baby cow.

  13. Lani Sohn says:

    Carrie, I’m so glad there are people like you in this world making a difference and educating people about the dairy industry. There is so much false and misleading things out there about us and sometimes it’s so frustrating because people believe them. Reading your blog gives me some hope about getting the truth out there. PETA = giant headache

  14. keeton says:

    Thank you for clarifying. I was thinking that there was a play on words going on. I have felt nauseated drinking milk the past two days and was considering stopping, but it didn’t make sense. I always loved milk as a kid and still do, and now I am going to make a glass of chocolate milk.

  15. Tahirah A,Goldamith says:

    In my religion Islam, milk is spoken of in the Holy Quran as a miracle, it is a food and a drink and it has been created for us in an amazing and wonderful way. I love my milk and pray it is not being damaged in the mass market. which milk do you buy ?

  16. Dear Dairy Carrie. Lots of good info here. Thank you. But you speak only about the white blood cells in pus and leave out the skin cells and bacteria.

    I can deal with skin cells. I shed them everywhere myself! LOL! But what types of bacteria are we talking about, or is that considered a non-issue with pasteurization?

    A lot of people are on the raw milk bandwagon, feeling we are missing out on GOOD bacteria from such milk. Personally I prefer yogurt cultures, beer, sauerkraut, miso or just a probiotic pill. But I think raw milk people really need a better understanding of the bacteria types that come with that pus, or milk sans pus.

    • dairycarrie says:

      Good questions!

      There are many different types of bacteria that could cause mastitis. Fortunately pasteurization does take care of those issues. Personally I don’t drink raw milk. I don’t see the risk being worth any supposed reward.

  17. Peep says:

    this whole thing is a joke, of course people who are pro-dairy are going to defend it! I eat dairy (minimal) but realize there IS pus in your milk. Don’t deny it and know where it comes from and how it’s produced.

  18. Sam says:

    dairycarrie, there is pus in milk according to
    Frank A Oski (in his book “Don’t Drink Your Milk”)

    And regarding your comment on J Keon – bias has nothing to do with scientific facts.

    Somatic cell counts are correlated to udder infections according to multiple extremely reliable sources including the abovementioned Oski who was a head of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

    According to the The National Mastitis Council
    “Bulk tank somatic cell count reflects the levels of infection and resultant inflammation in the mammary gland of dairy cows and provides an indirect measure of the processing quality of milk”

    According to
    Dr. Donald E. Pritchard. Dairy Extension Specialist
    “By using bulk tank milk somatic cell count (BTMSCC) information, producers can get an
    estimation of the percentage of both cows and quarters in the herd that have udder

    So are these people also just biased? The US has a maximum allowance of 750000 cells per ml in their milk (almost double the amount in Europe), according to

    Therefore, by definition, somatic cell count implies that the milk that you are drinking comes from cows with udder infections.

    • Support says:

      So according to Frank Oskri (who wrote an anti milk book) there is pus in milk. Sounds like he is a person that doesn’t have an agenda!

      Go back and read the part where I talk about what somatic cell count is. Is it pus? No.
      A cow completely free of any udder infection will still have somatic cells present. While the US Allowance of is higher than some other countries, individual processors have capped those limits at a much lower number.
      Overall you seem to be missing the point that somatic cell is not the same as pus.

  19. Maqui says:

    Good for you!! Keep the blog and the education on the city people. We have a Dairy Barn down in Uruguay and we just love it! GO GIRL GO!

  20. Nemi says:

    You have explained and defended the idea of pus in milk (I’m not convinced given that SCC is still suggestive of infections),but can you defend or explain the ethics of dairy farming? separation of mother and child? the veal industry and the beef industry? Your defense of milk seems rather flimsy in the reality of the situation, don’t you think?

    • dairycarrie says:

      I’m not sure what you are looking for here. If you want to learn about why we separate cows and calves on dairy farms, please read this post-

      If you’re looking to tell me that I need to defend the ethics of what I do, please tell me first if you are my customer? If you aren’t a consumer of dairy then you aren’t my customer and ultimately it is up to my customers to decide if they feel what dairy farmers do is ethical or not. This blog’s intent is to show them what we do so they can make an educated decision.

  21. Stephanie says:

    “My cows”????? Ha!

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