Keith Woodford holds the position of Honorary Professor of Agri-Food Systems at Lincoln University, New Zealand. His main role at Lincoln University is supervising postgraduate students. He combines this with industry-based project work and consultancies both in New Zealand and beyond.
Keith’s agri-food interests are wide ranging, and span from farm level strategy through to industry strategy, consumer issues and human health. He has a particular interest in ‘whole of system’ issues. Keith holds a PhD from University of Queensland and a Master of Agricultural Science from Canterbury University. He has worked in more than 20 countries on agri-food development projects. He is a Fellow of the NZ Institute of Primary Industry Management, and a Member of the NZ Society of Animal Production. He has published in journals as diverse as Agricultural Systems, Meat Science, Community Development Journal, Systemic Practice and Action Research, Proceedings of the NZ Society of Animal Production, European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Diabetes and Nutrition, Nutrients, Advances in Nutrition, International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, and Primary Industry Management.
Keith has a particular interest in the health issues relating to A1 beta-casein. In 2007 he wrote a book on these issues called ‘Devil in the Milk’. In New Zealand it is published by Craig Potton Publishing, and in the United States by Chelsea Green. Numerous posts on the health and industry issues relating to A1 beta-casein can be found in this site under the category ‘A1 and A2 milk’.
Keith has also had a life long interest in mountain regions and mountaineering. In his younger years he climbed widely in the New Zealand Alps and also climbed in the Andes (from Peru to Tierra del Fuego), the Himalayas and Antarctica. These days he has toned things down more than a little, but remains active in the hills, and still skis each year in both New Zealand and North America.
Keith can be contacted at keith.woodford(at)lincoln.ac.nz
Keith, Read your book Devil in the Milk.Thought it was great,really terrific. I stopped drinking milk a year before after reading T. Colin Campbell’s “The China Study” now I am glad I did. Because of your book I am now reading a 1998 edition of William Shaw’s “Biological Treatments for Autism and Pdd” Isbn. 0-0-8-9661238. The I found out that Shaw has a later 2008 edition. So you,ve really caught me up in this. My sister has Parkinson’s, 73, so I was interested in your linking BCM7 as possibility to it.Let me know if you write another book.Thanks, Martin.
I listened to your interview with Sean Croxton on Underground Wellness recently and I found the information very interesting. I was previously aware of A2 milk but did not have all the information so thank you for your work. One question, are A2 milk and other dairy products made from A2 milk available to buy in New Zealand? I know that Blue Ridge used to supply A2 milk in NZ organic and health shops, but I have not seen them in shops anymore.
Many thanks and kind regards
Zora. A2 milk is available throughout NZ under the Fresha Valley brand. But it is only in full cream and it is only in some supermarkets owned by Progressive (Woolworths, Fresh Choice and Countdown). It won’t be in all of these stores but it is centrally supported. What this means is that the milk manager at these stores can order it in on the same pallet as all of the other milk that they get. If you cannot find it, then contact me again, telling me where in NZ you live.
Hi Keith, Iv’e been trying to get this product back on our local shelves at Countdown. I spoke to the Store manager in Countdown Gisborne who said they stopped ordering fresh valley a2 milk because it kept expiring before being purchased, Yet, when they did stock it I noticed a trend that showed the opposite result. ??? Anyway, is there a way to order online from Fresh valley considering the lack of innitiative by my local Countdown store manager? Regards Derek
Derek, I share your frustration. But unfortunately I have no available solution. I have tried to get The a2 Milk company to market their UHT A2 milk in NZ, but so far to no avail.
I just finished your book. Thanks so much for writing it. I’m sharing it with every person I know.
Keith, I have read your book The Devil in the Milk. I have a small herd of Reg Guernseys and have had them tested for A2 genotype. I plan to make cheese from their milk. Are there health benefits for cheddar cheese made from 100% A2 milk?
A2 cheese will have benefits relative to A1 cheese, in the same way as A2 milk has benefits relative to A1 milk. This is because the A1 beta casein in cheese releases BCM7 in the same way that it does in milk.
Phil please can you let me know when and where your a2 cheese is available? I’d be a keen regular purchaser. I’m in Tauranga and buy a2 milk through countdown regularly.
Hi Keith, I have been reading several papers on BCM7, A2 milk and following A2 for quite a while. one section I was reading, on how BCM7 enters the bloodstream via a leaky gut syndrome. Is it possible, over use of anti biotics prescribed by dentists and GP’s, can cause leaky gut syndrome? when candida in the intestinal tract overgrows because the “good bacteria” which keeps candida in balance has been killed off by the anti biotics. At the same time Candida is being fed by the large amounts of sugar and simple carbohydrates in the western diet. Therefore BCM7 enters the bloodstream.
Yes, overuse of antibiotics is likely to increase ‘leaky gut syndrome’
I did not have Irritable Bowel Syndrome until immediately after, at age 46, a doctor prescribed a 6-week ‘triple treatment’ of 3 antibiotics to get rid of a small duodenal ulcer in 1994 i.e. to exterminate Helicobacter pylori from my system. While the treatment was fully successful, ulcer-wise, I suspect at least one of the 3 antibiotics, most likely metronidazole was responsible for then giving me IBS (associated with leaky gut syndrome????). I have heard some anecdotal evidence that metronidazole tends to do this. The IBS would then subsequently re-appear whenever I experienced stress – most notably following the death of my eldest son at 26 in a plane crash in 2002. But more recently I have found that going over to using A2 milk and goat milk yoghurt has apparently eliminated my incidence of IBS. Great book BTW. Very well written, thank you.
Hello Keith, I recently finished your book which I read with great pleasure. It convinced both me (who is gluten sensitive) and my highly A1-sensitive and gluten intolerant wife that we have to switch over to consuming pure A2 dairy products and we are looking forward to doing that, upon moving to New Zealand (currently we live in Hungary).
At one point in the book you are referring to an enzyme in the uncompromised human digestive system that is responsible for metabolizing BCM7, which in combination with another statement of yours that humans have only drunk (cow) milk in larger quantity for about two thousand years, made me think: how long does it take – evolutionarily speaking – an animal’s gut to be “colonized” with the enzyme(s) allowing the full digestion of a food newly picked up into its diet?
To put it short: if some of us humans have the right enzymes existing in our gut to metabolize milk, isn’t it safe to assume that it’s evolutionarily embedded food type of those genetically predisposed?
Also, it seems like a common sense truism, that mimicking the suckling animal and collecting milk for our own consumption should have occurred well before the first settling humans started broadcasting and mass harvesting cereal seeds, wouldn’t you agree? There is incomparably less energy input required for the former to do.
2 years ago just west of Chicago we started buying raw milk from guernsey cows. We loved it! Never had any issues. Always lasted up to 10 days. We recently moved to Austin and switched to primarily Jersey cow milk, still raw. At first it seemed fine and we didn’t notice only a slight difference. But 3 – 4 weeks out 3 of the 4 of us started having digestive issues, either immediately vomiting and/or runny stools. After reading this it is very interesting but also worrisome as well, especially because I make baby formula with it for my 9 month old, and will probably have to when my newborn is 3 months old. Now I am at a loss at what to do and if I should look for nutritional alternatives to milk, i.e. almond milk/goat milk, etc. I really miss my guernsey milk!!! Any suggestions would be great!
Up until the age of 32 I had consumed all and any dairy products. Then for 15 years I started to have all sorts of health issues which were related to milk/lactose…who knows and had been unable to drink standard milk and related products because of the dire health problems it created. I tried everything else, soya milk, UHT, lactose free etc. Then finally I read this book and started to see the light. Recently we moved to Oxford, NZ and discovered Village Milk, raw milk, A2. I cautiously tried it and have never looked back. Fantastic,no side effects , but even better a massive improvement in my overall health. Great digestion, heaps more energy, nails grow properly, skin and hair cleaner and brighter, the list goes on. The science is fascinating, but the results are life changing.
Sounds familiar to me. BTW I have even noticed that dogs seem to prefer A2 milk. If a container of milk seemed a touch ‘off’ say there were slight curds in tea of coffee or a faint odour I was in the habit of giving a very shallow dish of it our two dogs (unless really off). They would drink it but at a leisurely pace (unless really starving) and now and then I’d get a glance saying (probably) ‘it’s a bit off Boss’. However since going over to A2 if we want to open a new container the doggies would get a small dish from the older one and they never look up but slurp it up at high speed. I deduce that dogs were probably originally fed excess goats milk and their tastes pre-date the A2 mutation in cows milk. Weird science 😉
Hi keith ,
I live in christchurch and want to buy raw A2 milk , do u know any farmer selling it ? Thanks
Sorry, I know no-one who supplies raw A2 milk.
hi keith do you know if and where a2 cheese and yoghurt can be bought in tauranga and auckland. Or anywhere else in nz? I’ve come up with nothing searching on internet…
(i regularly buy fresha valley’s A2 milk but also noticed it often goes off before expiry date. I wonder why this is.)
Jo, the problem with expiry of the milk from Fresha Valley is a big problem. And it has done the brand considerable damage in NZ. Unfortunately there is no A2 cheese or yoghurt available in NZ. I may be able to find someone not too far away who has an A2 herd if you wanted to make your own.
Keith, forgive me if I err but isn’t the solution for Jo to simply purchase goat’s milk yoghurt or cheese? That is what I have been doing here in New South Wales (being a stalwart A2 dairy milk consumer). Goat’s milk yoghurt is I presume exclusively an A2 protein yoghurt? There has been displays of goat’s milk-based products at the Sydney Royal Easter Show for very many years and the goat’s milk yoghurt in particular sells like hot cakes with many consuming it on the spot if it is a hot Easter long weekend. Delicious. The cheeses do well also of course. As an aside, I have also long wondered why the (NZ) company marketing the quite popular EasyYo brand of dried powders for home-making yoghurt (in a little plastic kit they sell) hasn’t latched onto either the use of A2 dairy milk- or goats milk-based dry powders with a culture based on A2 cow or goats milk respectively. Am I missing something?
Steve, You are correct re goat’s cheese, although not everyone likes goat milk cheese or yoghurt.
The Easy-Yo product is owned by Westland Dairy Co-op. Their CEO has always been sceptical about A2 – much to my frustration. The previous CEO was a great believer in A2 but when he died in 2008 or thereabouts the new CEO reversed that policy. So far I have not been able to convince him to take up the A2.
Great news now regarding the availability of A2 milk in Auckland, New World Mt. Roskill have a shelf dedicated to A2 and I have found that it is always available there. New World New Lynn have a limited supply. I think it is up to us as consumers to pressure your local supermarket because , it seems to me that it is only consumer pressure that will change the buying regime of the Supermarket chains. I realize this doesn’t help anyone living outside Auckland but you should be applying pressure to your local supplier, informing friends and family of the benefits and getting them to apply pressure too will mean that suppliers will be pressuring the industry to produce more of the product required by consumers. And thank you Keith for the great information, I have started my elderly Mother on A2 Milk now, since she was diagnosed with Diverticular Disease and also have started her on a regime of digestive enzymes and have noticed a marked improvement in her symptoms, this is I believe partly due to the lessening of wind associated with the A1A2 variant of milks I was previously using.
Hi Keith I am very interested in buying A2 milk after reading an article by you regarding “The Devil in the Milk”. I actually live in Christchurch, Hornby. Could you tell me where you purchase your A2 milk? I’d really appreciate it. I’m trying to heal my leaky gut and I make kefir and would prefer to use A2 milk. Any advice on where to get A2 milk would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
I believe Halswell New World is still stocking A2 milk from Fresha Valley. Unfortunately it has poor keeping quality.
Very interesting, have been following this story for a year or 2 and now doing a small review myself on this topic, as part of nutritional studies i’m completing. There seem to be many papers esp on Type 1 Diabetes but i have little time to complete. Am really enjoying it though! Seems to mirror a lot of issues in the food industry re the (deliberate this time) modifying of crops and fruit and veg in recent decades for commercial reasons and not necessarily to the benefit of health. Tis every so slightly frustrating (!) and also fascinating but predictable story. given human nature…wondering how much time will elapse before we realise the general principles of what we are allowing to happen to us and our surroundings and afford at least some effective change …..there’s no short cuts. Has been great reading and learning about the specifics of the milk saga though …..some very committed people have been involved. Thanks for continuing it.
Hello Keith we are a group farmers from Holland
We want to start whis A2 Milk produce
Can we contact you for info about a2 milk
Sir, Now Fontera & Nestley compeny have entered to A2 milk Mkt , what would be the outcome
Hi, Carbon Credits with the ETS.
business only has to find an extra $500 million, presumably from NZ citizens?
Absolutely no financial $ numbers of unintended consequences. Velocity of money every year from livestock vs trees 4eva.
thanx for your articles and the rest of Interest.co.nz