Remembering When Only Barbarians Drank Milk (2018)
Ancient Romans were not alone in looking down on butter and milk. For centuries, this was the norm in many parts of the world: People who ate butter and drank milk were uncivilized outsiders. To hear the Romans tell it, the barbarians to their north were swilling milk by the mugful. Differences in climate made butter and milk a mark of otherness-unlike cheese which kept better in warmer climes. If anyone can take credit for raising milk and butter up to respectability, it is the dairy-crazed Dutch. China has become the world's third-largest milk producer, and today, almost 40 percent of Chinese drink milk, the highest percentage in Chinese history. People have argued over the importance of breastfeeding, the healthful versus unhealthful qualities of milk, farming practices, animal rights, raw versus pasteurized milk, the safety of raw milk cheese, and more.