North Carolina State Beverage


North Carolina State Beverage

Adopted in 1987.

Milk was designated the official state beverage of North Carolina in 1987. Seventeen other states (including bordering states of South Carolina and Virginia) recognize milk as a state symbol. North Carolina ranks 31st among dairy producing states in the nation (2006 milk production totaled approximately $139 million).

Did you know that: Milk has been proclaimed the official state beverage or drink in each of the following states:

State Symbol: Milk

Arkansas | Delaware | Louisiana | Minnesota | Mississippi | Nebraska
New York | North Carolina | North Dakota | Oregon | Oklahoma | Pennsylvania | South Carolina | South Dakota | Tennessee | Vermont | Virginia | Wisconsin

North Carolina State Beverage: Milk

North Carolina State Beverage

North Carolina ranks 20th among dairy producing states in the nation with nearly 1,000 dairy farmers producing 179 million gallons of milk per year. The annual income from this production amounts to around $228 million. North Carolinians consume over 143 million gallons of milk every year.

The General Assembly of 1987 adopted milk as the official State Beverage. (Session Laws, 1987, c. 347).

Where milk comes from and how it's made.
Ever wonder where delicious milk comes from? It all starts with healthy, well-fed cows that live on farms all around America the beautiful.

Pertinent Facts

  • All cows are females (males are called bulls).
  • A cow can't give milk until she's given birth to a calf.
  • Cows provide 90% of the world's milk supply.
  • A cow's udder can hold 25-50 pounds of milk at a time - no wonder she's so eager to be milked - and a cow gives nearly 200,000 glasses of milk in her lifetime.

Can You Say, "I'm Full?"
Cows are BIG eaters. Did you know that cows have four stomachs and eat 90 pounds of food a day? That's probably more than you weigh! A cow that chows on only grass can make 50 glasses of milk a day. But one that eats grass, corn and hay can make 100 glasses of milk a day!

Milk has a long and rich history. For example, did you know?

  1. Sanskrit records mentioned milk 6,000 years ago.
  2. The Bible describes the Promised Land as Aa land flowing with milk and honey."
  3. The Greek physician Hippocrates recommended milk as a medicine some 2,300 years ago.
  4. Christopher Columbus brought cattle to the New World on his second voyage.
  5. It has been said that one reason for the high death rate among those who traveled to the New World on the Mayflower was that they had no fresh milk to drink.
  6. Cows were brought from Europe to the Jamestown colony in 1611 and to the Plymouth colony in 1624.
  7. Cheese was an important item in the diet of the Vikings, who from about the 8th to the 10th century sailed the seas on long voyages.
  8. Cheese was an article of commerce in ancient Rome. Monks developed the art of cheese making in Europe in the Middle Ages.

North Carolina Law

The law designating milk as the official North Carolina state beverage is found in the North Carolina General Statutes, Chapter 145 Section 145-10.1.

Chapter 145: State Symbols and Other Official Adoptions.
§ 145-10.1. State beverage.

Milk is hereby adopted as the official State beverage of the State of North Carolina. (1987, c. 347.)

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