Preface | Free access

The importance of milk quality for further processing

Milk is still one of the staple foods worldwide. Milk quality is crucial for the best taste and for both a high technological and nutritional value.
Therefore, the quality of the milk at the time of takeover in the dairy is controlled immediately (ingredients of raw milk, such as fat and protein, as well as bacterial count, cell count, antimicrobial residues and dilution). Proper raw milk quality forms the basis for the production of high-quality dairy products. Due to its great economic importance, the price that a farmer can obtain for the milk he delivers depends to a large extent on their quality characteristics. The production of high-quality milk is not only crucial for taste and image, but also plays an important role in further processing. An essential prerequisite for high quality milk is that it is produced by healthy cows. This also meets the expectations of consumers.

One of the biggest factors influencing milk quality is udder health.
Mastitis causes not only lowers milk yield, adds treatment costs, and shortens the productive life of the cows, but it also impacts milk quality.
Inflammation of the mammary glands loosens the cell structure of the gland cells, so that components of the blood plasma (e.g. water, salts, blood proteins) can seep into the milk storage cells.

The nutritional value of milk is decreasing. The total protein content remains approximately constant with an increased cell count. Still, the composition of the protein changes: the casein content decreases and the whey protein content increases. In addition, the concentration of the milk component lactose decreases, since it is synthesized in only small amounts in case of an inflammation. The result is poor acidification properties during processing.

Geert Hulpia graduated as a chemical engineer and holds an MBA degree. He has many years of experience in the business of hygiene products in different companies. Currently, he works as an independent consultant.
Geert recently followed the mastitis management training by MEX™ and is a certified MEX™-coach.