Skip to content

Sheep Farming for Milk

Sheep Milk Farming

Sheep Farming for Milk

Sheep farming for Milk is a greatly increasing Business in the United States. Global Sheep Mild demand is greatly increasing. Most Sheep Milk is being used for Designer Cheeses. Most of Sheep Milking Large farms are located in Europe. But it is greatly spreading in the United States.

Traditionally the United States started in Sheep for Wool production. Now you see Milk Production also growing. many of the Sheep Milk producing Farms are also producing Sheep Milk Cheeses.

Sheep Farming for Milk 1
Sheep Farming for Milk

We have tried to supply you with some videos. Milking equipment can be very costly. Quality and Sanitation requirements, need to be maintained to guarantee the quality, freshness, and purity of Milk

What is Sheep Milk Used for

  • Liquid Milk
  • Milk Powder
  • Cheese
  • Butter
  • Yogout=rt
  • Ice Cream

Global Sheep Milk Producing Countries World Atlas

  • China – 1.5 Million Tons Annually
  • Turkey 1 Million Tons Annually
  • Greece – 750,000 Tons Annually
  • Syria – 684,578 Tons Annually
  • Romania – 632,582 Tons Annually
  • Spain – 600,568 Tons Annually
  • Sudan – 540,000 Tons Annually
  • Somalia – 505,000 Tons Annually
  • Iran – 470,000 Tons Annually
  • Italy – 383,837 Tons Annually
  • US – 4,700 Tons Annually

What is Process for Sheep Milk

  • Sheep walked onto the Milking Platform. This is a raised platform that makes it accessible to connect the milking connections.
  • The Front side of Platform has a slot so females can put their heads through and feed.
  • Vacuum lines are then connected to the ewes via teat cups
  • The platform is usually waist high – this makes it easy for the farmer to hook up milkers to the sheep without stooping over
  • It also allows the farmer to examine the ewe’s teats to make sure clean
Sheep Farming for Milk 2
Sheep Farming for Milk

Sheep Milk Production is usually the highest in their 4th Year. Sheep milk our much faster than Cows. Some Sheep can Milk out in around 60 seconds which makes the milking process very fast.

US Sheep Milking is gaining Popularity. In Wisconsin in 2020, there are approximately 35 Operations

Goat Milking Farm in Holland

Parts of a Milking Machine are here

  • Teat Cups and liners – they gently hook up and seal
  • Milking Cluster – Several Teat Cups making Multiple connections possible
  • Claw – where the teat cups connect
  • Pipeline – Milk travels down the pipeline – usually stainless – by vacuum
  • Pulsator – gently pulsates vacuum to simulate Milking by a calve – sheep require approx 120 Pulses per minute.
  • Milk receiver – Tank
  • Milk Cooler
  • Vacuum pump and gages
  • Regulator
  • Digital controls – depending on the levels of Automation.
This is a Cattle Milking Operation but gives you an Idea of a State of The Art Milking Parlor

Benefits of an Automated Milking Operation

  • These are not Labor intensive
  • Milking becomes consistent – compared to by hand
  • You can increase Milking frequency
  • Sanitation is much easier to manage
  • Transportation of Milk becomes very clean- by stainless / vs Buckets
  • Sheep are less Stressed – moved in and consistent milking by machine
  • Floor surfaces can be sanitized easily
  • Visual inspection of Sheeps Teats much easier
  • Much Easier on Farmer Ergonomics

See Our Extensive Guide – 16 Ways to Make Money Sheep Farming

Dis Advantages of Automatic Milking Equipment

  • The Largest seems to be Capital Investment
  • Higher Utility Bills
  • Automation – Maintaining of Equipment – Much more complex
  • If it Breaks the whole system stops
  • Sanitization procedures must be followed and maintained.
Sheep Farming for Milk 3
Sheep Farming for Milk

Profitability for Raising Sheep for Milk

We built a profitability Tabe for Milk Production for Sheep Milking. These are all approximate Numbers. These will depend on Breeds, lambs, and feed.

We also chose lower numbers so that our numbers would be lower than you might experience. Please use the table as a guide and then you can add your own production forecast.

Sheep Farming for Milk Profitability Table

SheepLambs / 3 Per YrSpace Required 20 Sq Feet - EachGrazing Acres .3 / SheepFeed Required / Yr $100Wool $ 15 lb / YearAverage Price $ 10 / LB Wool90 Gallon/ Yr each ewePrice $ 30 per GallonTotal Wool Revenue PossibleTotal Revenue Milk and Wool
1360 sq ft.9 acres$ 30045 lbs$ 4502708100$ 1508,250
26120 sq ft1.80 acres$ 60090 lbs$ 90054016,200$ 30016,500
515300 sq ft4.5 acres$ 1,500225 lbs$ 2,250135040,500$ 75041,250
1030600 sq ft9 acres$ 3,000450 lbs$ 4,500270081,000$ 1,50082,500
20601200 sq ft18 acres$ 6,000900 lbs$ 9,0005400162,000$ 3,000165,000
30902,700 sq ft27 acres$ 9,0001,350 lbs$ 13,5008100243,000$ 4,500247,500
401204800 sq ft36 acres$ 12,0001,800 lbs$ 18,00010,800324,000$ 6,000330,000
501503,000 sq ft45 acres$ 15,0002,250 lbs$ 22,50013,500405,000$ 7,500412,500
1003006,000 sq ft90 acres$ 30,0004,500 lbs$ 45,00027,000810,000$ 15,000825,000
20060012,000 sq ft180 acres$ 60,0009,000 lbs$ 90,00054,0001,620,000$ 30,0001,650,000
Sheep can give Birth 6+ lambs every Two Years
Sheep can Produce 1/2 Gallon Milk per day / 180 Day Lactation
Raw Sheep Milk $9 - $25 per Quart - Used $ 30 per Gallon for Table
Feed 5 Months Buying Hay $ 100 rest Grazing
Please Check my Numbers

Can Sheep produce both Wool and Milk

Yes, we contacted Susan is the Sheep & Goat Specialist at the University of Maryland’s in Keedysville, Maryland This website has an immense amount of Dairy Sheep information. She Replied that actually most Sheep farming Operations – Operated on three-fold purposing of sheep

  • Wool
  • Milk
  • Meat

Our Profitability table includes wool calculations and also Milk calculations. There are great benefits to spread Equipment, Feed, Labor Cost can all be shared through all methods of making Money on Your sheep farm

Best Breeds for Dairy Sheep / Milking

  • East Friesian Sheep
  • Lacaune Sheep
  • Awassi Sheep
  • Assaf Sheep
  • Polypay
  • Sardia
  • British Milk Sheep
  • Chios
  • Zwarbles
Breed Dairy SheepOriginAmount of Milk
East Friesian Sheep Germany / Holland80 – 160 Gallons
Lacaune Sheep France80 Gallons
Awassi Sheep Asia / Arabian Desert80 Gallons
Assaf Sheep Israel118 Gallons
Sardia Italy80 Gallons
British Milk Sheep United Kingdom80 – 105 Gallons
East Friesian Sheep
Polypay Dual Purpose Sheep – Multiple Return on Investment
Shropshire Sheep

Duo Purpose Sheep Breeds

In doing our research. it is very challenging to raise Sheep with only one profit center. In talking with Sheep experts they shared that Sheep farmers often duo purpose ( Wool, Milk) – three-fold purpose ( Wool, Milk, Meat)

When you Farm sheep using all three avenues for profit. You can greatly spread out the capital and labor cost that is needed for sheep farming

All Sheep Breeds can fit all three categories – but in looking at Breed specs can help you understand which breeds strong points will allow you to make best decisions

They estimate that there are over 1000 different Breeds of Sheep and there are over 60 Breeds in The United States by Itself. The major Breeds are Here.

  • Shropshire – 9 -14 lbs

Milking Equipment Needed

  • Milking Parlor
  • Milking Room
  • Milking Platform
  • Larger Herds – Parlor Pit
  • Milking Claws
  • Milking Buckets
  • Milk Cooling Tank
Sheep Farming for Milk 4
Sheep Farming for Milk

Diet and Nutrition For Milking Sheep

Diet for Milking Sheep is greater than just for normal sheep Farming. Meat and wool production. The ewe is needing better nutrition for optimal Milk Production and not only affects Volume but the quality of the milk.

Nursing Sheep need High-Quality Forage. Forage alone will not be enough nutrition. The grain is usually fed to Ewes when they are nursing in the Milk Parlor. Unlimited amounts of clean water need to be provided. 80% of Sheep Milk is water. Care needs to be taken some supplemental feeds such as ( Fish Meal) can flavor the milk.

Nutritional Value of Sheep Milk

Nutrition Value for Sheep MilkAmountNutritional Value Cow Milk
Carbohydrate 5.1g4.8g
Protein 5.4g3.2g
Mono – unsaturated1.5g1.1g
Calcium170 IU120 IU

The Above table compares the Nutritional Value of Sheeps Mils Compared To Cow’s Milk.

How Much Milk does a Sheep give per day?

If you check production Tables, but generally sheep will produce 1/2 Gallon per day. The amount can vary according to breed. And it also is affected by the length of the Lactation Cycle and age of the ewe.

How Much is Sheep Milk Worth?

Sheep Milk various in Pricing we found prices ranging from $ 9 – $ 30 per quart. Most of Sheep milk is used in the preparation of Cheeses

Name of Sheep CheeseCountry of Origin
Le ClaousouFrance
Brin de ArmorFrance
Pecorino SardsItaly
Pecorino Toscano Italy
Casu Marzu / has insects in itItaly
Oscypek cheese. Poland
Artisanal sheep’s-milk cheeses Poland
Castelo BrancoPortugal
Torta del CasarSpain
 Paranoia Hungary

Largest Players in Producing Sheep Milk

  • New Zealand Sheep Milk Company – Blue River
  • Spring Sheep
  • Sheep Milk Company LTD
  • Origin Earth
  • Haverton Hill Creamery
  • Velvet Cloud
  • Almienta
  • Maui Milk Company
  • Roquefort Vernières

We did not purchase this but if you look here you can purchase the latest Global Sheep Milk Forecast Report 2019

What countries use sheep milk?

Sheep Milk usage is growing each year, but the majority of Sheep Milk is produced in Europe and Asia. Most of the Milk is used in Commercial Cheese Production.

Is sheep Milk Good for You

Sheep Milk is very good for you and tastes great. It is currently not available enough in US Markets in Stores. To Purchase it you need to contact local farms.

Powdered Sheep Milk can be purchased online, along with sheep cheeses. It has been around for many years in European Countries and is easier to get.

Sheep Diseases that People can Get

Sheep Disease How it is Spread
RabiesBite – infected Slavia
AnthraxBacteria – Break in Skin / Contacted with infected animals
 Brucella Direct Contact with animal Fluids
Sore Mouth / OrffDirect contact with Lesion
ScabiesMites – Direct Contact
RingwormDirect Contact
Tularemia Direct Contact
Listeriosis Eating Raw Dairy Products
See Complete List HereZoonotic Diseases