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General Questions

WHAT IS THE COMPOSITION OF MILK?

The gross composition of cow’s milk, in general, is 87.3% water, 4.7% lactose (carbohydrate), 4.0% fat, 3.3% protein, and 0.7% minerals. Milk composition varies depending on the species (cow, buffalo, goat, sheep), breed (Holstein, Jersey, Indian origin), the animal’s fodder & feed, and the stage of lactation and weather conditions.

WHAT IS PASTEURIZATION?

A simple, effective method to kill harmful pathogens through heat treatment ( 71.7 °C for 15 seconds) without affecting the taste or nutritional value of milk. Pasteurization is recognized around the world as an essential tool for protecting public health since it was first introduced in 1864. The process was named after French scientist Louis Pasteur.

WHAT IS HOMOGENIZATION?

A process applied to milk that results in fat globules being reduced in size to allow a smooth consistency. The fat in milk is secreted by the cow in globules of non-uniform size, ranging from 0.20 to 2.0 µm. The non-uniform size of the globules causes them to float, or cream, to the top of the container. The purpose of homogenization is to reduce the milk fat globules size to less than 1.0 µm which allows them to stay evenly distributed in milk. Homogenization is a high-pressure process that forces milk at a high velocity through a small orifice to break up the globules. The result of homogenization is the creation of many more fat globules of a smaller size. Homogenization in milk also prevents the creamy layer being formed at the top.

WHAT IS STANDARDIZATION OF MILK?

Standardization of milk refers to the adjustment which means raising or lowering of fat and solids not fat levels of milk. The standardization of milk is commonly done in case of market milk supply and in case of the manufacture of milk products. e.g. condensed milk, milk powder, ice-cream and cheese etc. the standardization is mostly done to have a uniform milk fat content in the finished dairy product. In India, milk is toned to 3 % fat or double toned 1.5 % by standardizing the fat content of milk.

WHAT IS SNF IN MILK?

The abbreviation of SNF is “Solid Not Fat”. Total solids content is the entire residue left after complete evaporation of water from milk. This includes fat protein, lactose and mineral matter. These solid constituents exist in milk in a mechanical mixture.

WHAT IS SKIM MILK?

The product left after the cream is removed from milk. Skim or skimmed milk also is called fat-free milk.

WHAT IS CASEIN?

The dominant protein in cow’s milk. Casein is vital to cheesemaking and has a variety of uses in manufacturing.

WHAT IS WHEY?

The watery part of milk that separates from the curds during the cheese-making process. The composition of whey varies considerably, depending on the milk source and the manufacturing process involved. Typically, it is rich in lactose, minerals, vitamins, and protein.

WHAT IS ULTRA-HIGH TEMPERATURE (UHT) TREATED MILK?

The process of heating milk to approximately 137.8° C for 2 seconds and then rapidly chilling it. This process results in milk that is 99.9 per cent free from bacteria and creates an extended shelf life for products. Ultra high-temperature treatment of milk reduces the nutritious value of milk.

WHAT IS DAIRY SUSTAINABILITY?

The practice of continuous improvement to provide consumers with nutritious dairy products in a way that makes the industry, people and the earth more economically, environmentally and socially better – now and for future generations.

WHAT ARE THE CONSTRAINTS OF ORGANIC DAIRY FARMING IN INDIA?

In an organic dairy farm cows and calves are fed 100% organic fodder and feed. Organic crops, hay, and pasture are grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. Land used to grow organic crops must be free of all prohibited materials for at least three years prior to the first organic harvest. Non-natural feed additives and supplements such as vitamins and minerals must also be approved for use. All animals must have access to the outdoors (based on weather conditions).

Animals over six months of age must have access to pasture during the growing season. For disease prevention, parasitic control and disease treatment herbal, naturopathic, homoeopathic treatments are approved for use on organic animals. Antibiotic Usage is restricted with 30 days or twice the labelled time of withdrawal period. A conventional dairy farm finds this risky and economically unviable proposition in India particularly due to lack of enforcement of regulatory mechanism. The average production of milk in an organic farm is much higher compared to the conventional farm and organic dairy farms find themselves in a disadvantageous position due to lack of enforcement to check spurious organic farms.

In an organic dairy farm cows and calves are fed 100% organic fodder and feed. Organic crops, hay, and pasture are grown without the use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. Land used to grow organic crops must be free of all prohibited materials for at least three (3) years prior to the first organic harvest. Non-natural feed additives and supplements such as vitamins and minerals must also be approved for use. All animals must have access to the outdoors (based on weather conditions). Animals over six months of age must have access to pasture during the growing season. For disease prevention, parasitic control and disease treatment herbal, naturopathic, homeopathic treatments are approved for use on organic animals. Antibiotic Usage is restricted with 30 days or twice the labelled time of withdrawal period. A conventional dairy farm finds this risky and economically unviable proposition in India particularly due to lack of enforcement of regulatory mechanism. The average production of milk in an organic farm is much higher compared to the conventional farm and organic dairy farms find themselves in a disadvantageous position due to lack of enforcement to check spurious organic farms.

WHAT ARE THE ILL EFFECTS OF USE OF HORMONES IN DAIRY FARMING?

 

Fertility hormones are used routinely in many dairy farms to ensure that calves are conceived and born within defined management periods and to synchronize batches of cows or heifers to calve around the same time. Hormones such as rBGH (Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone) and Oxytocin is rampant in India which is often used to increase milk production and cause easy letdown of milk. Consumption of such milk may lead to early puberty, hypersensitivity, hormonal imbalance and certain types of cancer in humans.