This is the 6th post in series called Finnish Fooddities and it is about Finnish food oddities. Hopefully you'll enjoy it! Check out the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th posts too!
Every single of us are sucklings by birth, one of our first cravings is for breast milk but for most people that craving is a fading one. Bigger kids don't drink their mothers' milk, but cows milk is used. Here in Finland that craving doesn't fade so easily, and grown ups are actually encouraged to drink milk because of the calsium etc and since most of Finns are firm believers in functional foods, milk and it's benefits are believed in.
My personal usage of milk is only few liters per year, but many people drink milk with their meals. Statistic Finland says that one Finn drinks nearly 140 liters of milk per year, and since there are also people like me (drinking not so much milk per year), some people drink pretty large amounts. Great 90 percent of this huge milk usage is semi-skimmed or skimmed milk. And because of the firm belief in functional foods, we do have milks with added vitamins and such.
Adults in other countries do use products made out of milk frequently, and we do have our own love affair with cheeses, yoghurts, ice cream, coffee with milk, hot chocolate and butter milk too. But there are slightly less countries in which adults drink actual milk with their meals. I recognize that milk is being drinked in other countries as well, but mainly by kids. But you just visit one of our nightly grill stands and watch drunk grown ups order black pudding sausages with lingonberry jam, accompanied by carton of milk... If French and Italians drink wine with their dinners, many of us choose milk.
I believe that plant milks such as soy milk have growing usage, even I enjoy occational oat milk drink. But mainly we do use cow's milk. No other animal milks available, at least not in every store. It's also fairly difficult to find "raw" milk, if someone would like to use that. Milk is pretty much processed, pasteurized and what not. Great amount of research has also been made, naturally, some do claim that milk prevents blood pressure diseases, metabolic syndrome and such. But we still are fat and heart diseases flourish...
To me our nations milk usage is definitely a food oddity, fooddity. Good, bad or ugly oddity, I let other people decide. Maybe you would like to tell me if you drink milk with your meals or do you choose something else?
Just watch this old milk commercial from the 90's, featuring one of our NHL ice hockey stars Teemu Selänne. It may not be Got Milk? material, but hey maybe it's milk which has made Teemu better looking in this future of ours ;)