FAO ANIMAL PRODUCTION AND HEALTH PAPER 78
Milking, milk production hygiene and udder health
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Milk production from cattle for human consumption dates back to prehistory. In former times the milk would be obtained from the family cow and usually consumed either as milk or a simple milk product within hours of milking. Today commercial milk production is a complex industry. A dairy herd can range in size from a few cows to several thousand. The milk may be stored on the farm for up to two days and transported long distances to urban centres for distribution as liquid milk or processed into cheese, butter, milk powder and many other products. These milk and dairy products may not be consumed for weeks or months after the milk leaves the farm. Because milk and milk products are perishable foods high standards are required, for a successful, profitable dairy industry. The milk leaving the farm must be of good nutritional and bacteriological quality and be uncontaminated by soil and chemical pollutants. To a marked degree this quality depends on the methods of milking hygiene and milk storage on the farm.
This short monograph aims to provide a concise description of the methods that should be used on farms to produce high quality milk. It is impossible to deal in detail with all the equipment and methods currently used on farms for all commercial designs of equipment. These can vary from simple handmilking to highly complex automated milking and cleaning systems for herds of several hundred cows. Fortunately the principles on which all the methods are based are the same and milk of the highest quality can be produced with the most simple equipment.
The operation of both simple and complex systems is described in two ways. The numbered pages outline the principles and methods of farm milk production and hygiene. The facing pages provide a running summary which draws the main conclusion from the text and with illustrations outlines the methods that farmers should use. Whilst these two parts of the manual are complementary the summary pages can be read separately to provide a guide to milk production methods.
For further information reference should be made to the more detailed texts listed, the publications of the International Dairy Federation and the commercial suppliers of milking and dairy equipment.
We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of Sara Staker who has prepared the typescript, Jaci Geens and Pam Priest for illustrations, Ray Young and Martin Shearn for photographs and the Editors of the NIRD Technical Bulletins for permission to reproduce illustrations.
D N Akam
F H Dodd
A J Quick
FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS
Rome, © FAO 1989
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2. MILKING MACHINES AND EQUIPMENT
Measurement of vacuum
Action of milking machine
Milk and air separation
Recording and sampling
Milk flow and cluster removal
At Each milking
International standards for machine milking
Installations and testing
3. MILK HYGIENE
Other sources of contamination
Cleaning milk production equipment
Detergents and disinfectants
4. MASTITIS CONTROL
Causes of mastitis
Exposure to pathogens
Penetration of the teat duct
Establishment of infection
Elimination of infection
Principles of mastitis control
Mastitis awareness and the organisation of mastitis control
5. SYSTEMS OF MILKING
Bucket machine milking
6. ORGANISATION OF MACHINE MILKING
Milking parlour installations
Types of milking parlour
Selection and use of milking parlours