Self-disclosure: I may be young, but I’m not trendy. Like, at all.
I recently subscribed to a service that sends you stylish clothes because I could spend an hour in a department store only to leave with sweatpants. I never jumped on the seltzer drink trend. I refuse to switch to a contemporary middle part in my hair, and I Google much of today’s slang (which at this point, if I don’t know what something means, I’ve decided to leave it alone).
But imagine my surprise when I found out one simple thing I do daily has been considered ‘edgy’ by influencers from coast to coast: putting REAL milk in my coffee.
Following an article anecdotally describing the rise of whole milk in cafes from those who know it best—baristas—little blue checkmarks across Twitter came out of the woodwork to shun alternatives aside and question the decision-making skills of those who forgo real milk.
To take it a step further, one barista says what coffee drink you order says a lot about you. If you purchase coffee with a milk alternative, according to her informal analysis, you may have a dairy allergy otherwise, she contends the stigma against whole milk is confusing because simply put, “it’s delicious.”
Across the board, Iowa Farm Bureau’s Food and Farm Index® shows not only do nearly all Iowa households consume milk weekly, but 89% of Iowa grocery shoppers maintain milk from animals is healthy. We’ve had whole milk in our fridge since my first born was old enough to drink it. Pediatricians recommend whole milk for kids age 1 to 5 because it provides all the vitamins and nutrients children need for growth and development, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Plus, dairy scientists will tell you it’s natural — no additional ingredients needed to make real milk a wholesome choice. But the rich taste is why it’s been a continued purchase for our family.
This same richness lends itself to a good latte, cappuccino or freshly ground coffee with a dash of milk. But it also helps create a sustainably sourced pick-me-up beverage. Since the 1990s, milk production in the United States has increased by 48% while per-unit emissions of carbon have decreased by 26%. (Now, that’s cool.)
For me, real milk simply checks all the boxes: delicious, healthy and environmentally friendly. Being the preferred coffee additive of the ‘trendy’ people is a little bonus for this out-of-touch mama. Not much else I do is Instagram or TikTok worthy, so I’ll “milk” this one for all it’s worth!