Maricopa County Food System Coalition Forum

to support and grow a food system in Maricopa County that thrives

Maricopa County Food System Coalition Forum is a social network

I live in the north Gilbert area, and was wondering if anyone would be interested in a milk "cow-op." The idea is that we share a milk cow. This means we share the cost of a cow & setup (we have the space), share the milking and cleaning duties, and share the product, which is raw, non-homogenized milk. It would work something like this:


  • There would be a "membership" cost, to fund the initial setup, including the cow.
  • There would be a periodic (monthly or quarterly) payment to fund supplies, maintenance, replacement costs, breeding costs, etc.

I don't know what all this would add up to yet, but it will definitely be less than keeping a personal cow. If there's enough interest, I'll research the costs to see if it's feasible.

The way we're thinking about this, the membership can be sold, so the initial funds can be recouped if you decide not to continue.



Each contributor would be assigned times to milk & clean, based on their membership.


  • Raw milk and cream from your own cow.
  • You only get the milk you use, and don't have to deal with excess.
  • The costs are shared by all "members."
  • You can have a cow and milk even if you live in a subdivision.
  • You get training on how to milk the cow.
  • You don't have to be a cow expert. Most of the care, breeding, calfing, etc. would be taken care of for you.

If you're interested or have any questions, please respond to this post or email me at

Views: 211

Replies to This Discussion

I'm out on Lindsay/Southern right on the boarder of Mesa.  I may be somewhat interested in some kind of co-op, however it would DEFINITELy depend on how well that would be able to fit into our schedules and exactly where it's located.  I'm hoping you're just south of Baseline, I know there's a lot of good lots for it there near our house :)



We're just south of Baseline, off of Greenfield, so we're not too far from you. :) 

We'd have to put together a care schedule. There would be either 7 or 14 milkings/week, depending on whether we do a 2/day or 1/day milking, and the time of day would depend on the schedules of the initial participants.

A bit about cows: to stay in milk, cows have to drop calves about once/year. They produce milk while pregnant, but there is a period when they don't, which is just before calving. They also give their first milk to the calf, so there's a month plus when there is no milk.

They give 4-8 gallons of milk/day, but that varies on breed, gestation period, age, and various other factors, including the website you get your information off of. :)  Some people will only need one milking per week to supply their home needs, others may need two or three. So the amount of investment will go according to the number of milkings a person commits to.

I might be interested.  It will  depend on the schedule, what we will be feeding the cow and the cost of it all.

OK, I'll keep you posted. As for food, it would be grass fed, primarily on our pasture. We'd have to bring in some food to supplement. I'd like to keep it as pure as possible.

Great idea Sheri!!  Wish you lived more like a 'mile' away from me than what...'20 miles'...haha!  Hope this cow co-op works out.

I know, Chris. You need to move. ;)

What happened to the cow co-op?

Things are going very well with our sweet cow. We've been through a very steep learning curve, and have enjoyed meeting many great people, too! We have a steer from her whose name is Sir Loin (for obvious reasons) and he's a sweetie, too. If all goes well we'll have another calf in June.
We opted not to do a share because of the complexity in managing it. We're handling things in other ways that are very beneficial. Shoot me a mssg for more detailed info. :)

I'm interested.  I sent you a message.

I'm very interested as well.  I sent  a friend request so we can send messages and hear more- I'm very interested in getting some milk like you described above.



I'm interested. Sent friend request.

interested as well, like many others would like to know more details before hand.


© 2017   Created by MarCo Food Coalition.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service