Grass Fed Butter: Science & Eco-friendly Advice

Grass fed butter has become a popular product among high performing young professionals and when you’re faced with so many different brands it’s hard to know which is the healthiest and eco-friendliest – In this article we cover all the things you need to consider before you buy or commit to a particular brand.

Questions most Australians have about Grass Fed Butter

Grass Fed Butter In Australia

Butter is essentially an emulsion of water dispersed in an animal or plant based fat. According to Dairy Australia, the per capita consumption of butter in 2018/19 was 4 kg which means approximately 333 grams a month or 3 butter sticks of 100 grams every month.

Based on its popularity in Australia, we know how overwhelming it is to find the right product for you. Here’s a quick guide for buying the right product/brand for you

1. What is Grass Fed Butter?

Essentially, this is butter created from the milk fat of cows who have been primarily feeding on grass, the cow’s natural diet. In fact, grain has been a relatively recent addition to the diet of cows as they have been grass fed for most of their existence on Earth. It was only when cows where brought inside large dairies where they could not feed on grass did grain enter their diets in a real way.
While cows did consume some grain before the invention of the modern dairy, the mixture was mostly grass as that is what was available to them. With some dairies going back to grass fed mixtures to feed their cows, the healthy benefits are now really starting to show.

2. What About the Saturated Fat?

It is true that both grass fed and grain fed butter sources contains high amounts of saturated fat. However, the myth that they contribute to heart disease has been debunked for years. Studies have shown that saturated fat does not contribute to heart disease. The real threat is the unsaturated and particularly trans fats that have shown to increase the risk for cardiovascular issues. Of course, saturated fat should be consumed in moderation as eating too much will add more extra weight to the body. With grass fed butter sources the risk is even lower that your body will turn the excess into unwanted body fat. However, it is good advice in general to consume all foods in moderation.

3. Is Woolworths butter grass fed?

Yes, According to Woolie’s Official Facebook Page their home brand butter is NZ dairy farmed and 100% grass fed

4. Is Kerrygold butter 100% grass fed?

Yes, According to Kerrygold website their cows enjoy a grass-based diet all year round & Beta Carotene ( a pigment in the grass) is the secret to their butter’s rich golden colour. 

5. Is Mainland butter grass fed?

Yes, According Mainland’s website to their butter is “100% pure and certified organic New Zealand butter”

6. Is organic butter same as grass fed?

No, “Organic” normally refers to the potential contaminants in the dairy that is used and “Grass fed” refers to cows who have grazed only on pasture and dried forage

Did you know? Grass Fed Butter is normally use on Keto recipes like Keto Coffee?

Which Australian Brands Offer Grass Fed Butter?

We have compiled a list of Australia’s most popular grass fed butter brands

  • Lewis Road Creamery: Artisan butter from New Zealand (available at Woolworths)
  • Organic Times: Unsalted and Salted grass fed butter from Victoria
  • Westgold butter: Salted & Unsalted butter from New Zealand (available at Woolworths and coles)
  • Pepe Saya: Salted & Unsalted butter from Geelong, Victoria (available at Woolworths and coles)
  • Ashgrove butter: Tasmanian butter ( available at Woolworths, IGA and coles)
  • Myrtleford Cultured Butter
  • Woolworths Essentials Unsalted & Salted Butter
  • True Organic 

Benefits of Grass Fed Butter

Everything that makes grass fed butter beneficial starts with the acknowledgement that butter itself is essentially fats.  In fact, butter contains around 400 different types of fatty acids along with vitamins that are fat-soluble. 

Here are some health benefits of grass-fed butter.

  1. Nutritious: Butter from grass-fed cows has more omega-3 fatty acids 
  2. Greater Weight Loss Potential: It contains Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) which is a fatty acid commonly used as a supplement for loosing fat. Grass fed versions of butter contain upwards of five times the amount of CLA compared to their grain fed counterparts. So, when consumed in recommended amounts, the CLA will actually help you to lose the unwanted fat.
  3. Higher Amounts of Vitamin A and K2 : It has Vitamin K2 which regulates calcium levels for bone and heart health. Butter from grass-fed cows also contains Vitamin A which supports your Immune System and protect your eyes
  4. Taste: Because there are more nutrients, the taste of the butter is better and smoother than its grass fed counterparts. As with any edible product that is new, you may be a bit surprised at the different taste, but it is still based in milk fat and not too different than grain fed butter if that is what you are used to eating. In addition, the grass fed variety will help other foods taste better as well while mixing in to your favorite recipes.
  5. Improve your Mood: One of the more interesting discoveries about grass fed butter is that it has a positive psychological impact. The old saying of you are what you eat certainly seems to apply with butter from grass fed sources as people generally feel better thanks to the positive boost it provides.

How to Make Grass Fed Butter a Part of Your Life

Here are some tips you can make to be a more conscious consumer and find the balance between health and sustainability on the products you buy:

  1. Do your Research – You’ will need to look for Nutritional Facts and Production Information. We also recommend you to look up the product’s brand website to see if they follow any eco-friendly or sustainable practices – Don’t have time for this? Fill out our 50 secs questionnaire and get a curated list of products brands you can safely buy from     
  2. Buy Local – Look for products that are produced locally to reduce the carbon and water footprint associated with shipping and transportation. While this type of products tend to be slightly more expensive, it helps us mitigate climate change issues.
  3. Go Natural – Get butter that contains simple ingredients. Preservatives and artificial stuff tend to have complex names.
  4. Consume Less –  Remember that just because butter from grass fed cows is much better for you than from milk fat produced from grain fed cows, that doesn’t mean you can overindulge. Instead, consume it in moderation and you will start to feel the difference. “Keep In Mind The Cheapest Price Is Rarely The Fair Price”

Butter’s Environmental Impacts

Most dairy products have a huge carbon footprint. According to the Environmental Working Group dairy products like butter or cheese are among the worst animal products due the the amount of resources needed to produce them.

Vegetable Butters: Eco-Friendly Alternatives To Butter

In short plant based butters and vegan butter are the best eco-friendly alternatives to traditional butter. Some examples of vegan butters are

  • Cocoa Butter
  • Coconut Butter
  • Almond Butter
  • Avocado Butter
  • Shea Butter
  • Mango Butter

Positive Reviews

According to Makayla Meixner from healthline.com ” Grass-fed butter is a good source of vitamin A and the antioxidant beta carotene. It also has a higher proportion of healthy, unsaturated fats and CLA than regular butter.”

Negative Reviews

According ncbi.nlm.nih.gov ” LDL-C concentrations were significantly increased on butter compared with coconut oil”

Scientific Citations