We get this question all the time because the two animals are very similar in size. However, the two kinds of milk taste nothing alike. Sheep milk is noted for its incredibly clean flavor – with no funny aftertaste. In fact, most people even prefer it to cow milk.
The answer is ‘Yes.’ Not all breeds of cows produce the same kind of milk. Bellwether Farms uses milk from Jersey cows that we source from neighboring farms here in Sonoma County, California. Jersey cow milk contains naturally contains more A2 beta-casein protein, not the A1 protein that many find difficult to digest. The cows producing the organic milk used in our yogurts have been DNA tested to confirm they produce only A2 protein. In addition to being more digestible, Jersey cow milk also has a richer, creamier taste and texture.
In Bellwether Farms’ research, we found that over 50% of our customers, when surveyed, reported that they chose our yogurt specifically because of digestibility and other health concerns, such as allergies. While sheep milk does contain lactose, people consistently report that they are able to eat sheep milk without discomfort.
Sheep milk also has no A1 protein which is fairly common in cow milk and for some people presents symptoms similar to lactose intolerance.
Of course, the thing that really stands out about Bellwether Farms yogurt is how great it tastes.
Yes all varieties of our yogurt are naturally gluten free.
Our sheep milk is perfect just as it is. For our yogurt, we use only natural, whole milk with its abundance of nutrients intact. There is no need to add powdered milk and stabilizers or drain extra whey to make the yogurt thicker. Our recipe is simple: Happy, healthy sheep plus meticulous production methods and selection of active cultures creates the most naturally healthful, lusciously thick, and delicious whole milk yogurt for you.
Humans have been milking sheep and enjoying the unique benefits of their milk for thousands of years! The countries of the Mediterranean remain the world’s biggest producers—the extraordinarily long lives of Bulgarian shepherds is often attributed in part to the health-giving benefits of sheep milk. Sheep’s milk is extremely high in nutrients compared to other kinds of commercially available milk. In many cases, it is more readily digestible to people who suffer from lactose intolerance. Gram for gram, the superiority of sheep milk lies in the comparison with cow and goat milk – especially in the differences between levels of critical nutritional substances like protein, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, thiamin, riboflavin, Vitamins B6, B12, and D, the medium-chain amino acids, linoleic acids and all 10 of the essential amino acids.
Sheep milk contains about one-third more energy than cow or goat milk. It has double the protein and much more of the right kinds of fats, vitamins and minerals, particularly calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc while being lower in sodium. It has more than twice as much Vitamin C, and double or triple the other essential vitamins. Importantly, it also has more folic acid (folate).
Sheep’s milk contains about twice the fat of cow’s milk, but this also means twice the ‘healthy’ fats (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated, including Omega 3 & 6). The same goes for Goat’s milk. The body needs healthy fats for many bodily functions, like absorbing vitamins. Monounsaturated fats lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) while increasing HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol). Polyunsaturated fats also lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol. Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids belong to this group.
Sheep milk is also rich in medium-chain fatty acids or triglycerides (MCTs) – about 25% of the fat content. MCTs can benefit weight control by promoting ‘fullness’, reducing fat deposits, increasing energy expenditure, and being more easily metabolized (turned into energy in the body).
The fat globules in sheep milk are smaller than those in either cow or goat milk so the milk is more homogeneous. The smaller fat globules are often more easily digested and less likely to cause high cholesterol.
In a nutshell:
Ounce for Ounce Whole Sheep Milk is Superior! (Compared to cow and goat milk)
Sheep milk has 60% more protein
Sheep milk protein is complete because it has all 10 essential amino acids the body needs.
Sheep milk does not contain A1 protein
Sheep milk has more of the good fats!
Mono- and poly-unsaturated, including Omega 3 & 6
Sheep milk is higher in natural vitamins and minerals.
A, B, B1, B6, B12, C, E, and calcium (also more magnesium, phosphorous, and zinc, which may help combat allergies and eczema)
Sheep milk is easier to digest.
Higher in medium- & short-chain fatty acids
The fat globules are smaller and easier to digest
The liquid that is sometime found on the top of your yogurt is whey. It is normal for a bit of whey to separate from the yogurt once it has been packaged. Whey contains many important vitamins and nutrients and can be mixed back into the yogurt.
We do not add any sugar to our plain yogurts. The sugar in the plain yogurt is lactose (the natural sugar found in milk). The sugar found in our fruit flavors is about 3/4 naturally occurring due to the lactose and the fruit. The sugar in our vanilla is about 50% from the lactose. All added sugar in our yogurts is cane sugar.