CHENNAI: The age-old milk standards observed in India is likely to undergo change as the Union government is planning to evolve new standards. National Dairy Research Institute (NDRI) vice-chancellor and director A K Srivastava told Express that the new standards has been necessitated as there has been lot of changes in the dairy sector besides the change in consumption of fodder for cattles as well as evolution of technology besides climate change.
He said that the Union government is identifying labs to establish the standards of milk. Interestingly, plans are also on to ensure regular quality tests at every step.
Besides monitoring quality, the data evolved out of such tests would be very useful in amendment or revision of national and international standards of milk and milk products, said Srivastava.
Interestingly, plans are also on to evolve separate standards for buffalo, camel, goat and sheep milk, said Srivastava. The milk of buffalo and goat has lot of biomolecules, he said while stressing on the optimum exploitation of milk from these species.
He said that the Union government is also planning to fortify milk. He said government is planning to have Vitamin A and B mandatory for skimmed milk besides studying the option to have iron fortification in the milk.
He also stressed the need to validate fortification of different nutrients in the milk. He also stressed on the need for minimal use of antibodies on cattles or farm animals.
To a query over whether the milk produced by Indian breed of cows is far superior than foreign bred cows, Srivastava said that it is well established that milk produced from A2 cows is far superior than the A1 milk produced by foreign bred cows. Expressing concern over the decline of local livestock by four per cent, he said that government has come out with a policy that local indigenous breed should not be inseminated with foreign breed.
He said measures are also on to upgrade the local livestock by selective breeding. He also said that NDRI also did the research on the quality of milk from local breed of cows and the milk produced by foreign bred cows. “It was found that milk from indigenous bred buffalo and cattle is best when compared to the climatic conditions
prevalent in india,” he said.