Monday, July 23, 2012



"Milk is digestive, complete and balanced food for all age groups. Besides, providing immunity to the body, it is a rich source of protein, vitamins and minerals. We should be aware of the importance of clean milk production and consumption. Synthetic milk, containing chemicals like urea, caustic soda, refined oil, maltose, glucose, paint, mobil oil and detergents, is hazardous to health," cautioned the PAU scientists of Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Rupnagar (Ropar). Testing at home can detect whether milk is natural or synthetic, advised they.

The scientist, Ms. Aparna said that milk, in which there is no visible contamination, has a typical aroma and is rich in nutrients. Such milk has minimum microorganisms and has maximum shelf life. Milk which does not contain any organisms is safe milk, she told, adding that such milk is obtained only after pasteurization. She further observed, "Chemical or synthetic milk does not differ as far as physical appearance and smell are concerned, but is different in taste. To conceal the taste, natural milk is added in the synthetic milk to make it look normal milk. This milk is prepared to contain 4.5 to 5% fat and 9% solid non-fat (SNF). It is harmful ihf consumed."

Alerting the public, Dr Preeti Sharma suggested the tests for detection of adulterants in milk. "For Vanaspati, take 3 ml of milk in a test tube and add 10 drops of hydrochloric acid. Mix up one teaspoonful of sugar and examine the mixture after five minutes. The red coloration indicates the presence of vanaspati in the milk," she said. Natural milk does not contain glucose/invert sugar, but if test for glucose with urease strip (available in the medical stores) is found positive, that means milk is adulterated, she added.

For the detection of elements of starch, these scientists advised to add few drops of lodine solution. Formation of blue color indicates the presence of starch. For urea, they suggested to take a teaspoon of milk in a test tube. Add half teaspoon of soybean or arhar powder, mix up the contents thoroughly by shaking the test tube and after five minutes, dip a red litmus paper in it, they said. Remove the paper after half a minute and a change in color from red to blue indicates the presence of urea in the milk, they added. By physical properties and chemical tests, one can differentiate between the synthetic and normal milk, they emphasized, while advising the public to beware of synthetic milk.

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