Milk is one of the prime sources of nutrition for infants in all regions around the world.
In some countries, people of certain religions and cultures rely on milk as a primary source of protein and part of the vegetarian diet.
It is also the best nutrition for people who are sick, aged, children as it can be easily digested and assimilated.
But due to the growing population and rise in demand for milk, the vendors opt for adulteration to increase their profits.
Though there is an improvement in Milk yield due to the hybridization of cattle, yet the supply is low then the demand.
Also, the feeding cattle with nutritious supplements is getting expensive.
Even the water supply is low and also cattle suffer from sudden diseases that can’t be recognized earlier leading to their untimely death.
So most farmers are trying to get rid of maintaining cattle for milk production.
Even they are also dissatisfied with the sale price of the milk and also support from the governments in terms of insurance to the cattle, proper medical care and non-supply of fodder at the right time.
Hence the milk supply is going down and demand is rising. So to meet this situation milk suppliers try to enhance milk quantity by mixing with adulterants Further they also use preservatives to see that milk doesn’t get damaged or rotten during the transport.
Milk adulteration is done to
1. Enhance milk quantity for monetary benefits.
2. To preserve the milk for a long time like during transport etc.
3. Also to mask the lactometers used for quality check.
overall the aim is to get more monetary benefits. But the health of the customer is at risk.
Milk adulteration is done by:
a. A soap water solution. This has high-fat value and helps dilute milk so as to be unnoticed.
b. Soda or urea: These are used for dilution due to similarity in the color of solutions to milk.
c. Sugar solution. This helps diluted milk from being detected by a lactometer. The lactometer measures lactose density levels. Sugar solution also has lactose. Even the density variation is low due to the sugar solution.
d. Just plain water. helps to dilute milk.
f. H2O2; This may be a preservative. But harmful to the body.
Tips to detect milk adulteration:
- By feel and touch of milk or on any surface. Milk drop flows slowly due to viscosity. If it flows fast it means it is diluted much.
- Soda can be detected if there is quick foam or gas on adding lemon juice. Further, there is a chance of feeling of fullness in the stomach after consuming milk.
- Soap is tough to detect. This can be done by taste. The taste is largely different from normal milk. One may not feel he is drinking milk if the soap solution is added.
Health-related problems: Milk adulteration mostly affects the digestive system largely. t may induce vomiting, acidity or gastric distress.
Tips to have safe milk:
a. Try to find any farmer around your place of living if he supplies milk. The condition is that he must be using rearing cattle for his own needs and willing to give away surplus to others to sustain the fodder cost.
b. Try to purchase milk from reputed companies though expensive.
c. Try to rear own cattle for milk. This is the last option but most reliable option.