Historical information

This glass milk bottle was manufactured and used mid to late 1900's (1834 Victorian dairy industry was founded) up to the time that a cheaper container was invented(plastic bottles and polyethylene plastic lined cardboard cartons) and produced. In 1909 the supply of pure bottled milk was required for babies to overcome infant mortality due to unhygienic milk sources (unclean containers and unpasteurized milk). Due to the volume of milk being processed and hand milking could not keep up with demand, dairy farms introduced milking machines in the late 1930's. The great increases in dairy herds from the average of 18 cows per heard in 1950's to 142 cows per herd in 1996 required milk tankers to pick up the regions milk supply. This bottle was so constructed to be easily moved within the milk processing plants from the delivery vats/holding tanks to the final corking/sealing of the bottles for eventual distribution. From 1958 the milk bottle slowly became phased out of production. At this point in time Melbourne was drawing 160,000 bottles per week from the two major glass bottle works companies, e.g. Melbourne Glass Bottle Works Co.


Victoria was the major state supplier of cows milk in the history of Australian milk production from the early 1800's. The Kiewa Valley and its region was a major contributor to meet that demand. Each bottle was "branded" during manufacturing to show the contents (pasteurized milk) and where it originated from (region and supplier). This method of recycling the bottles back to specific dairy farms was a good control method but an uneconomical "on cost" which was replaced by the "throw away" less costly plastic and cardboard containers. Kiewa Valley dairy herds had marked bottles bearing "90/9", "6/18", "6/33", "6/35" and "6/36" This particular one has "7/14".

Physical description

This heavy gauged glass milk bottle has a rim and a distinctive head at the top. This head has been manufactured to facilitate the movement of the bottled along the milk production line. The method of pouring milk into the bottle has been part of the "production line". This bottle has a one Imperial pint capacity and is made from "clear" glass. There are other milk bottles that have a "green" tint in them.

Inscriptions & markings

Around the bottom side of the bottle and blown into the glass "ONE IMPERIAL PINT". Below these markings and stenciled is "KIEWA" (in freehand style and underlined) underneath is "PASTEURISED FULL CREAM MILK" underneath this ,in freehand stiyle is "USE" next to this in block style "KIEWA BUTTER, CREAM, AND ICE CREAM MIX" to the left of this ,and barely readable is stenciled "THIS BOTTLE ALWAYS REMAINS/ THE PROPERTY OF/ NORTH EASTERN DAIRY Co. Ltd". On the base of the bottle is molded a big "2". with a smaller "m". An identification mark of "7" over "14" is within a circled boundary. Below this is moulded "RM - 15".