HYDERABAD: Half of the milk sold in Telangana does not confirm to the standards set by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), reports the first ever nation-wide National Milk Quality Survey (NMQS) conducted by the regulatory body. The report also highlights the problem of poor quality and unsafe milk even in its packaged form.
For the survey, FSSAI collected 238 milk samples from the state of which only 114 were found to be compliant to all standards and 124 non-compliant. However, most of the samples that were found not complying to the standards were due to their non-adherence to quality parameters and the rest didn't adhere to safety standards.
The milk survey reports that 108 of the 238 milk samples collected from the state were found to be non-compliant only due to poor quality, of which 41 were packaged milk samples.
Of the 108 poor quality milk samples, highest (87) were due to low levels of SNF(solids not fat), which is the nutrient portion in milk other than milk fat and water. It consists of proteins, carbohydrates and minerals. Also, 29 samples were found to be low on Fat, 17 were found to have added sugar in them and 14 having Maltodextrin.
Of the 124 non-compliant milk samples, 16 were non-compliant due to safety issues and eight were due to quality as well as safety issues. Though most of the non-compliant milk samples were safe to consume, it wasn't of good quality.
Presence of carcinogenic Aflatoxin M1
Among the unsafe milk samples, 13 of them were found to be unsafe due to the presence of Aflatoxin M1, a carcinogenic toxin, which indicates unhygienic storage practices. The toxin is in metabolized form in milk, of a chemical compound produced by few fungal species.
Shockingly, eight of the milk samples with Aflatoxin M1 were from packaged milk samples. Two unsafe milk samples were found to be non-compliant for having antibiotics in them, of which one sample was of packaged milk. A few unsafe samples were found to contain hydrogen peroxide and detergents.