Mon 13 Jul 2020

Naadam is the largest traditional event in Mongolia marking the anniversary of the Mongolian revolution of 1921. Naadam is also locally called "Eriin Gurvan Naadam", "the three manly sports", in reference to the three major competitions held on this occasion: Mongolian wrestling, horse racing, and archery. Since 1998, a fourth game has been added: the throw of bones.

This year, due to Covid-19 restrictions, Naadam was only partly celebrated on the Oyu Tolgoi mining site where our subsidiary Support Services Mongolia (SSM) has been operating for 14 years.

At this occasion, on July 11, SSM's kitchen teams prepared a special dinner menu and distributed mare's milk (Airag), a traditional drink in Mongolia. 

The tradition of Mare’s milk 

Mare’s milk is rich in nutrients and is a sour milk drink. Mare's milk is three times less fat than cow's milk but it melts at relatively low temperatures and is quickly absorbed by the body. Fermented milk inhibits the growth and reproduction of pathogens such as putrefactive bacteria, Escherichia coli, staphylococci, and other infectious diseases. It also stops the putrefactive process in the gut and keeps the intestinal pH in an acidic environment. By drinking Airag, sleep returns to normal, intestinal function and blood pressure stabilize. The perfect nutritional value of fermented mare’s milk is close to breast milk.