Over the holidays we were in the San Francisco Bay Area visiting family. After hearing in this podcast interview that milk banks often have shortages over the holidays I brought my pump with me, and donated to the Mothers' Milk Bank of San Jose. HMBANA milk banks have donor reciprocity, so my approved file was sent from the Mothers' Milk Bank of North Texas.
My ulterior motive was to get a tour of the milk bank - something I'd never done before. Here are some pictures of my visit there with Pauline Sakamoto, director of the milk bank and president of the Human Milk Banking Association of North America.
Here's the Mothers' Milk Bank of San Jose from the outside.
This is the freezer where donations that have just arrived are stored until they're ready to thaw. That's where my 85 ounces went.
This shows milk thawing in the lab. They let it defrots at room temperature - what's known as a slow thaw.
This is the pasteurization machine, where they pasteurize the milk using the Holder method (62.5 C for 30 minutes). Pauline says that it's going almost constantly.
Here's the finished product - milk frozen and stored in this freezer until it's ready to ship.
And here's the baby shirt they gave me as a thank you for donating. Can't wait 'til my daughter is old enough to wear it!