Fresh Raw Milk – Regional Foods of Italy

While Americans are piously drinking skim milk or worrying about being lactose intolerant, Italians are happily consuming full fat raw milk- add this to the plus side of the reasons that I live in Italy.

Here in Ragusa, Sicily, cows are out at pasture for a good part of the year, and those fields of wildflowers make for exceptionally good milk. This is milk that last saw its mother 24 hours go, and is classified as alta qualità, for its higher protein content and extraordinary freshness. Since this is raw milk, it is recommended that you bring the milk to a boil before consuming, which is what I do before having a great caffè latte in the morning.

A liter of fresh milk from a Munto Punto dispenser in Ragusa costs 80 cents, or 1 euro if you buy a reusable bottle, which is cheaper than the packaged supermarket milk that is not classified as alta qualità (high quality). The milk is replenished daily in refrigerated containers, so you are always assured of freshness. In some areas of Italy the milk dispensers are to found right on the farm, while others are in a supermarket or on a street corner.

At last count there were 1353 fresh milk dispensers in Italy. Find the fresh milk dispenser nearest you in Italy at www.milkmaps.com

2 thoughts on “Fresh Raw Milk – Regional Foods of Italy

  1. We were in Rome for 2 months last year and had plenty of cappucini in the morning!

    I bought the latte fresca from the supermarket and it came in plastic packaging and would only keep for a few days. Is this considered raw milk(probably no)? If not what is it then compared to the milk found here in supermarkets?

    I cannot stand the milk here in the States and was wondering how to locate the same milk I dream about from Italy.

    1. I find the milk in the USA tasteless and am lucky to live near dairy farms with cows at pasture. The latte fresco in Italian supermarkets has a shelf life of a maximum of 4 days-anything longer lasting is micro-filtered and /or pasteurized at a high temperature and cannot be called latte fresco. Fresh raw milk (latte crudo) has not been pasteurized, so it is advised that it be brought to a boil before drinking. I find that the taste and smell of latte crudo changes with the seasons, as the cows have more flowers and grasses to munch on in certain seasons. This also affects the wonderful ricotta, which right now is a beige color and oh-so-creamy!

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