Tag Archives: dairy

Single-Service Container Testing


Did you know there’s regulations on the sanitation of your milk jug or the foil on your yogurt cup?

Single-service containers and closures have been used in the dairy industry for many years. There are standards established by the FDA to ensure the production of sanitary containers and closures for milk and milk products.

The standards set down specific requirements for the plants that fabricate the containers. This includes blow molders for your plastic milk gallon, the paper and laminators for milk cartons, the plants that produce the caps for that jug, the foil you peel off the yogurt cup or the creamer in the restaurant.

The standards cover everything about the plant and the manufacturing lines. They include requirements regarding the floors, walls and ceilings. There are standards for ventilation and the water supplies. They also cover personnel practices and hand-washing facilities, to name a few.

After a plant has been inspected and meets all of the requirements, the plant is certified and can produce caps and containers for the dairy industry. They are also inspected quarterly.

There are also bacterial standards for the containers and closures. The testing of the final product must be done by a laboratory that has also been inspected and certified by the FDA. The lab is then approved to perform the testing on the caps and jugs.

Daily Laboratories is an example of an FDA certified laboratory. 

Sources:

PMO 2007: Appendix J – Standards: Fabrication of Single-Service Containers & Closures for Milk and Milk Products

Almond Milk vs Cow Milk vs Soy Milk vs Rice Milk


Not too long ago, when being a milkman was a career option, the only thing you could expect to drown your cereal in was whole cow’s milk. Now, dairy milk comes in all sorts of varieties: whole milk, 2 percent, 1 percent, skim (fat-free), and even lactose-free milk.

For those with dietary or allergy concerns, there are also alternatives to cow’s milk. Almond, soy, and rice milk are popular alternatives to dairy, and they’re becoming even more available in stores across the U.S.

Each type of milk has its advantages and disadvantages, depending on a person’s diet, health, nutritional needs, or personal taste preferences.

For example, people in key development years — children over two, teens, and pregnant women — need proteins, vitamin D, and calcium. These are abundant in dairy milk. On the other hand, people who need to watch their calories or cholesterol — for weight reasons or heart health problems — should look to other options. Whole dairy milk contains more calories and cholesterol than any other milk.

In looking at the differences in these popular types of milks, you can determine which best suits your needs.

Dairy Milk

Dairy Milk

Whole milk is cow’s milk with none of the fat removed. It contains 8 grams of fat per cup, 8.5 percent nonfat milk solids, and 88 percent water. As none of the milk’s natural components are removed, it is high in natural proteins, fat, calcium, and vitamin D.

Other dairy milk has some or all of the fat removed. While whole milk has 150 calories in one cup, 1 percent milk has 110 calories, and skim milk has just 80 calories. Fat-free milk has all of the nutritional benefits of whole milk — a good source of protein, calcium, vitamins, and minerals — without the saturated fat and calories, though absorption of some vitamins may be reduced due to the lack of fat.

Lactose-free milk is processed to break down lactose, a natural sugar found in milk products. As with other milks, lactose-free milk is a good source of protein, calcium, vitamins, and minerals. The fat and cholesterol content of lactose-free milk varies, as it comes in 2 percent, 1 percent, and fat-free varieties.

The 3 Best Things About Dairy Milk

  • Whole milk can provide essential proteins and extra calories from fats as well as vitamins and minerals for infants and the elderly
  • Lactose-free versions are available for people who are lactose intolerant
  • Widely available in grocery stores and convenience stores, including grass-fed and low-heat pasteurized milk options

Con: Those that are not fat-free are high in saturated fat and calories, which is bad news for people with heart problems, high cholesterol, or those who are trying to lose weight. Dairy milk is also a common allergen for babies, children, and adults.

To read the rest of the article from Healthline, click HERE.

What does “Sell By”, “Use By” and “Best By” mean, anyway?


“You can’t drink that milk!  The date on it is yesterday.”

 

Who has heard that?  Or was it you who said it? 

The dates printed on milk jugs are probably some of the most misunderstood set of numbers in the grocery store.  One of the most common arguments people have at home is whether food should be thrown out because the date has passed.   

Date labels such as “sell-by”, “use-by”, “best-before” are confusing and contribute to about 130 billion pounds of food wasted every year.  Think about how much money that is.  This comes to over $160 billion dollars.

Except for infant formula, product dating is not generally required by Federal regulations.  Dating of some foods is required by some states but there are some areas where almost no food is dated.

A “Sell-by” date is found on perishable foods like meats and milk.  This tells the store how long it should be displayed.  It is not an expiration date.  Typically, one-third of the product’s shelf life remains after this date if the product is kept refrigerated at home.  This means milk, if it has been refrigerated at all times, not left of the counter and has not been drunk directly from the container, will usually be drinkable for about one week after the “sell-by” date. 

Egg carton dates may be a “pack date” or a “sell-by” date.  The “sell-by” date will not be greater than 45 days after packing. Refrigerated eggs (in their carton and not in the door) can still be used for 3 to 5 weeks after that date.

A “Use-by” or “Best-by” date is a recommendation for best flavor or quality.  These are normally found on shelf-stable products such as canned or boxed goods or condiments.  It is not a safety issue. Foods age in different ways. Frozen meat will not become unsafe to eat if it is kept frozen.  That doesn’t mean it won’t change.  Freezer burn will affect the quality and texture of the meat and make it unpalatable.  Foods such as cookies and crackers will also be affected by time.  The fat in the cookie will react with oxygen and become rancid and crackers will absorb moisture out of the air and become stale.  They will taste off, but will not make you sick.

An “Expires On” date is about safety.  Only a small group of foods have expiration dates.  Infant formula and some baby foods are required by Federal regulations to have an expiration date.  Other foods that should have an expiration date will be ready-to-eat foods such as deli items and prepared sandwiches.  These foods may contain harmful bacteria and are not cooked before they are eaten.

Expiration dates are about safety.  Best by dates are about taste, texture and appearance.

Save your money.  To reduce the waste at the grocery store and the curbside, your best bet to decide if something is still good is to use your senses.  Look at it, smell it, feel it, taste it.

Sources:

“H.R.5298 – Food Date Labeling Act of 2016.” Congress.gov. Retrieved from https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/5298

“Blumenthal, Pingree Introduce Commonsense Bill to Standardize Food Date Labeling.” blumenthal.senate.gov. Retrieved from https://www.blumenthal.senate.gov/newsroom/press/release/blumenthal-pingree-introduce-commonsense-bill-to-standardize-food-date-labeling

Bloom, Jonathan. “‘Sell By’ Date Labels Confuse Customers, Increase Food Waste.” theplate.nationalgeographic.com. Retrieved from http://theplate.nationalgeographic.com/2016/05/20/sell-by-date-labels-confuse-customers-increase-food-waste/

Houston-Edwards, Kelsey. “Why Food Date Labels Don’t Mean What You Think.” pbs.org. Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/next/body/food-expiration-dates/

“Expiration Dates: Should You Pay Attention?” stilltasty.com. Retrieved from http://www.stilltasty.com/articles/view/5

Nagappan, Padma. “To Eat or Not to Eat? The Food Date Labeling Act Could Help You Decide.” civileats.com. Retrieved from http://civileats.com/2016/05/19/to-eat-or-not-to-eat-the-food-date-labeling-act-could-help-you-decide/

USDA www.fsis.usda.gov

State Raw Milk Laws

NCSL Maps State Raw Milk Laws as 2015 Legislatures Reach Adjournment

Perhaps no other organization in the country is better positioned to know the best time for drawing a new map of current state raw milk laws and policies than the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).The bipartisan group, based in Denver, closely tracks state and territorial legislative sessions, and it has chosen this moment as they are adjourning to report on what it simply calls “State Milk Laws.” The 2015 legislative season is over in most Midwestern, Western, and border states, and others are rapidly reaching their adjournment dates.This was a busy state legislative season for raw milk. Doug Farquhar, the lawyer who follows raw milk action at the state legislative level for NCSL, says there were at least 29 raw milk bills in 19 states this time, and eight of those sought to make retail sales legal.The entire article can be found here:  Food Safety News

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