An Absurd Number Of People Believe Only Brown Cows Produce Chocolate Milk

Photo: Getty Images.
When you type "does chocolate milk" into your Google search bar, one of the first suggestions that pops up is, "does chocolate milk come from brown cows?" Apparently, a lot of us are confused about this. A recent 1,000-person survey conducted by the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy found that 7% of people think chocolate milk is produced solely by brown cows, Food and Wine reports. So, how about we clear things up: It's definitely not.
Since 48% of people don't even know where chocolate milk comes from, let's address that question, too. All milk, chocolate or not, comes from cows of all varieties. The colour of the cow has no influence on the colour of the drink.
Like other chocolate foods and drinks, chocolate milk gets its flavour and colour from cacao beans and sugar. In addition, it's got everything regular milk has in it, which means it's just as nutritious, according to Dairy Goodness. Some research suggests that kids who drink chocolate milk are healthier, since the sweetness is an incentive to get these nutrients.
So, where are people getting this idea about chocolate milk coming from brown cows, then? In a TV Tropes discussion on this very question, user pgj1997 brings up that this is how things work in Farmville. Then, there were those old Hershey's chocolate milk commercials starring brown cows (see below). Charlie and the Chocolate Factory also includes chocolate milk cows, Waterlily points out, though we don't find out what colour they are.
Perhaps, hypothetically, scientists could one day figure out how to engineer cows to produce chocolate milk, strawberry milk, or even coffee milk. But for now, don't let the commercials fool you: There is zero correlation between the colour of a cow's hide and the colour of the milk it produces.

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