Milk home delivery

nbs2

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Mar 31, 2004
2,713
485
A geographical oddity
I just found out that there is a dairy near me that offers home delivery. The prices are high (6.50/gal), but I hear the the product is excellent. I'm just wondering if it is worth the higher cost.

Also, they offer homogenized and top cream for their whole milk, which the kids still drink - I'm wondering what people that have had both think.
 

Macky-Mac

macrumors 68030
May 18, 2004
2,589
1,142
home delivery of milk! I haven't heard of that in years. We had it when I was a kid. I think it was about convenience since we 4 kids went through a lot of milk
 

mac88

macrumors 6502
Aug 7, 2008
477
2
Boston, MA.
Hood still delivers right to your doorstep on the South Shore here in Massachusetts. It is quite convenient and nostalgic.
 

Rt&Dzine

macrumors 6502a
Oct 8, 2008
736
5
We got home delivery several years ago because the milk in the stores went bad so fast. Gave it up because of expense and now all the stores carry wide variety of organic milk.
 

0098386

Suspended
Jan 18, 2005
21,553
2,886
We used to have it delivered (local farm) ever since I was a kid up until a couple of years ago. We go through a lot of milk in this house and Tesco's was cheaper so cancelled the delivery.
It was nicer stuff though, but I wonder if that was down to it being in glass bottles opposed to card boxes?
 

niuniu

macrumors 68020
Grew up on it. We lived pretty rural and had the milk delivered, was pretty common where we lived.

Don't miss it at all. Stuff we get in supermarkets is just fine, not sure what the milk is like in the States, but the milk form supermarkets here doesn't go off any faster or slower than straight from dairy milk. There is a slight difference in taste between milk you buy from different dairies. It really comes down to what you're used to. Drink any dairy's milk for a little while and you'll enjoy it. My experience anyway.
 

Gregg2

macrumors 603
May 22, 2008
5,809
344
Milwaukee, WI
I remember home delivery in glass jugs. I also remember at least one time the milk froze and broke the jug!

And home made ice cream...
sometimes made with snow
(you had to put the dog on a leash!)
 

nbs2

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Mar 31, 2004
2,713
485
A geographical oddity
Think you would get tired of the rude and kinky customers really quick. :(
I don't know - apparently, they just drop off the milk (you have to have a cooler, to prevent freezing/spoilage, or they won't make the delivery), so rude or kinky customers wouldn't get much of a benefit.

The price sounds similar to organic, maybe 50 cents more/gallon, but it sounds like a lot of you that got delivery gave it up because the grocery milk has turned out to be pretty good and less than half the price.

We go through 8 gallons of milk/month in our house, so maybe 4 a month for delivery might be a good compromise (use the cheap stuff for cooking, the good stuff for drinking?) to try it out for a few months to see if it is worth long term investment. Thoughts?
 

iOrlando

macrumors 68000
Jul 20, 2008
1,813
1
milk is milk. just like gas. Not sure what makes one kind of milk "excellent" and another kind of milk not excellent. Maybe it comes in fancy red bottles. ooo.

I think the only thing you have going on here is a dairy farmer that realizes he has some rich people nearby that are too lazy to go get milk themselves. Probably makes a buck or two off each bottle and avoids dealing with wholesale/third party.

any commercial farmer knows there is no money to be made doing that and they do it the normal way of just shipping it to the bottler, wholesaler.
 

0098386

Suspended
Jan 18, 2005
21,553
2,886
milk is milk. just like gas. Not sure what makes one kind of milk "excellent" and another kind of milk not excellent. Maybe it comes in fancy red bottles. ooo.
Mineral waters have difference tastes. I'd imagine milk with its more ingredients would have a wider gradient of taste.
 

iOrlando

macrumors 68000
Jul 20, 2008
1,813
1
Mineral waters have difference tastes. I'd imagine milk with its more ingredients would have a wider gradient of taste.
i would imagine any taste gradient is minimal. there are so many regulations for milk producers concerning health and other aspects, that you will never go up to a place to buy milk and say..ew..this milk taste like it has alot of iron or platinum or something funny. the only taste difference will refer to the fat content (skim, 1%, whole..etc).

now maybe if you go to someone's shack out back and they just tugged the milk out of the tit, maybe then you will get some difference, but any mass-produced and sold milk producer...its all the same. Milk is an industry that is ruled by economies of scale and scope. there isnt a whole lot of variety.
 

Rt&Dzine

macrumors 6502a
Oct 8, 2008
736
5
i would imagine any taste gradient is minimal. there are so many regulations for milk producers concerning health and other aspects, that you will never go up to a place to buy milk and say..ew..this milk taste like it has alot of iron or platinum or something funny. the only taste difference will refer to the fat content (skim, 1%, whole..etc).

now maybe if you go to someone's shack out back and they just tugged the milk out of the tit, maybe then you will get some difference, but any mass-produced and sold milk producer...its all the same. Milk is an industry that is ruled by economies of scale and scope. there isnt a whole lot of variety.
Some people have more taste buds than others. I can taste a difference between some milk brands. And some milk goes bad very quickly. I noticed this when they started using all the hormones.
 

nbs2

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Mar 31, 2004
2,713
485
A geographical oddity
i would imagine any taste gradient is minimal. there are so many regulations for milk producers concerning health and other aspects, that you will never go up to a place to buy milk and say..ew..this milk taste like it has alot of iron or platinum or something funny. the only taste difference will refer to the fat content (skim, 1%, whole..etc).

now maybe if you go to someone's shack out back and they just tugged the milk out of the tit, maybe then you will get some difference, but any mass-produced and sold milk producer...its all the same. Milk is an industry that is ruled by economies of scale and scope. there isnt a whole lot of variety.
If milk is totally standardized taste, then it wouldn't make sense for one brand to charge more than another at the grocery store. After all, higher prices would discourage all but the most ardent supporters and leave the remainder to spoil.

Nevertheless, I figured all milk as the same until I decided to start buying from the local mom/pop grocer because they had contracted with a local dairy and were undercutting the megamart generics by 10% or so. Took that gallon home, opened it up and had a glass. It was awful. I actually took it back thinking it may have spoiled. Picked up a different bottle from a different batch, and it tasted the same. That particular dairy just produced what I would call crappy milk. I figure most larger milk suppliers mix milk from various dairies or have contracts with large farms to supply all their milk, in order to have a uniform taste.

Certainly, I see a benefit to pasteurizing (instead of ultrapasteurizing) and homogenizing (instead of ultrahomogenizing), but can only meet you half way as I am not sure if it is or isn't worth it. Also, I think the glass bottles are plain clear (which is too bad - I would have preferred a smoke colored bottle)
 

iOrlando

macrumors 68000
Jul 20, 2008
1,813
1
If milk is totally standardized taste, then it wouldn't make sense for one brand to charge more than another at the grocery store. After all, higher prices would discourage all but the most ardent supporters and leave the remainder to spoil.

Nevertheless, I figured all milk as the same until I decided to start buying from the local mom/pop grocer because they had contracted with a local dairy and were undercutting the megamart generics by 10% or so. Took that gallon home, opened it up and had a glass. It was awful. I actually took it back thinking it may have spoiled. Picked up a different bottle from a different batch, and it tasted the same. That particular dairy just produced what I would call crappy milk. I figure most larger milk suppliers mix milk from various dairies or have contracts with large farms to supply all their milk, in order to have a uniform taste.

Certainly, I see a benefit to pasteurizing (instead of ultrapasteurizing) and homogenizing (instead of ultrahomogenizing), but can only meet you half way as I am not sure if it is or isn't worth it. Also, I think the glass bottles are plain clear (which is too bad - I would have preferred a smoke colored bottle)
you are seeing the impact of how different grocery stores make money.

you want to know how much milk should really cost in your area? go to walmart.

walmart charges the lowest price of milk around your neighborhood (not taking into account any type of supermarket coupons). I would guess walmart is the biggest single seller of food and beverage in the U.S, so they have quite lucrative contracts with local milk wholesalers that deliver tons of milk to walmart and accordingly make very little off each gallon. walmart itself makes pennies off each gallon too.

if you then go to your local supermarket...you will pay upwards of 35%-45%
more for the same milk. This is mass-produced generic milk..no difference in taste.

you go to a gas station..chances are the prices will only be 20%-25% more than walmart.

my point is the price you pay includes the price the store is making. gas stations make little off milk, and in fact, lose a little bit on milk. They instead want to sell you soda, coffee, etc....high margin items.

there are a ton of variables that go into cost, but its safe to say that all milk producers generally make the same percentage off of their operations. Some producers might have less of an infrastructure and therefore can charge a lower price to the supermarkets, while others may charge more due to more plants etc. It rarely has anything to do with taste or smell or whatever.
Thats why the ads for milk you see in the weekly circulars are usually because of the price they are charging (which alot of times is only meant to get you into the store).

Any commercial for milk that talks about how much better it is than competitors is simply put out there to sell more milk (obviously) and they end up having to charge more because of their high advertising budget. People are a weird animal though and people generally associate better quality with higher price (apple ring a bell..haha).

although milk is a commodity, having a good brand helps. Just like gas, if you are in a new area and you see a Mobil station or Jim's Gas Pump, chances are high you will go to Mobil even though its the same gas. You are afraid Jim might be selling you "bad" gas. So with milk, there are probably local brands around your home that people think is better than the generic kind, but its mostly just in the buyer's mind and perception of the brand.

its because of this that any food/beverage business is highly competitive and all that work just to make probably close to 6%-7% return on equity (or less).
 

Disc Golfer

macrumors 6502a
Dec 17, 2009
582
0
Milk tastes different depending on what the cows are fed.
Distance to market (age) and the container the milk is being stored in also have an impact on flavor. Personally I avoid milk in plastic containers and milk from more than about 150 miles away or more than four days past milking. Getting milk from a private dairy is the best way to go.
 

nbs2

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Mar 31, 2004
2,713
485
A geographical oddity
$3.25/gallon is actually a pretty good price, if the cows are free-range.
Good to know as I was thinking it was expensive. The cows are free range, and what's really cool is you can go down to the farm any day of the week at 4pm and help feed the calves (free activities for the kids FTW!).
 

mstrze

macrumors 68000
Nov 6, 2009
1,916
0
$3.25 doesn't seem like a lot to me. What are you paying for a gallon now in the supermarket?

We rarely use milk in our house and when we buy it's like a quart at a time or it goes bad. I think I am paying 2-something a quart here in the Houston, TX area.

Here's another thing to think about: Do you ever have to run to the store JUST to buy a gallon of milk? If so, this service will more than pay for itself, even if it costs more than the store.
 

renewed

macrumors 68040
Mar 24, 2009
3,064
5
Bemalte Blumen duften nicht.
$3.25/gallon is actually a pretty good price, if the cows are free-range.
Good to know as I was thinking it was expensive.
$3.25 doesn't seem like a lot to me. What are you paying for a gallon now in the supermarket?

We rarely use milk in our house and when we buy it's like a quart at a time or it goes bad. I think I am paying 2-something a quart here in the Houston, TX area.
I live in the Houston area and pay close to $4 a gallon for organic whole milk. I'm assuming free-range direct deliver is pretty much organic, so $3.25 sounds pretty darn good, especially delivered.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,641
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
Good to know as I was thinking it was expensive. The cows are free range, and what's really cool is you can go down to the farm any day of the week at 4pm and help feed the calves (free activities for the kids FTW!).
I live in the Houston area and pay close to $4 a gallon for organic whole milk. I'm assuming free-range direct deliver is pretty much organic, so $3.25 sounds pretty darn good, especially delivered.
The premium cow's milk brands that are organic / free-range around here are also $3.49-3.99 at large grocery stores, Walmart, etc.

It sounds like a win all the way around. :)