The History of a2 Milk®
Our a2 Milk only has the naturally occurring A2 protein and is not the result of any technological process or genetic engineering. Originally, cows produced milk containing only the A2 protein. Over time, a natural genetic mutation caused the A1 protein to appear in European herds and that mutation was spread due to migration and modern farming practices.
What’s the Difference Between A1 and A2 Proteins?
Milk from dairy cows contains high-quality protein, including casein and whey. Approximately one-third of the protein in regular cows’ milk is beta-casein, which may include both A1 and A2 beta-casein. Most milk on grocery store shelves is a blend of both the A1 and A2 beta-casein protein types. However, a2 Milk®. comes from cows that only produce the A2 protein and no A1.
While there’s no difference in taste between milk with A1 and A2 proteins versus A2 protein-only milk, the real difference is that research suggests that drinking milk with only the A2 protein may be easier on digestion and help some avoid discomfort.
Finding Our Farms
When looking for cows that only produce the A2 protein, we start at the farm. Farmers have herds that are made up of cows that may produce A1 protein, A2 protein, or a mix of both. We partner with farmers to evaluate the cows, test the genetic makeup of their herd, and ensure that they meet our stringent animal welfare guidelines.
After the initial review, our team works with the farmers to establish a segregation plan to separate the cows that only produce the A2 protein from the rest of the herd to maintain the purity of the milk. Every farmer goes through in-depth training to make sure that their practices and on-farm segregation meet The a2 Milk Company® standards.
Testing Our Cows
To find our a2 Milk cows in a farmer’s herd, we complete DNA testing of every cow to ensure they only produce the A2 protein. The testing is safe and does not hurt the cow. Cows that are found to produce only the A2 protein receive a certification and a purple a2 Milk tag so that they can be identified.
Once a2 Milk cows are identified and segregated from the other cows, we conduct additional tests to verify that there is no A1 protein in the milk before and after it goes in the carton. We regularly visit our farmers and cows to ensure they’re adhering to our standards and treating each cow like the V.I.C. (Very Important Cow) they are!
When you pour yourself a glass of a2 Milk, you can drink easy knowing that our farmers work tirelessly to bring you the highest quality milk. Head to your local grocery store today to taste the a2 Milk difference for yourself!