Milk characteristics: an industry perspective
There are many different components in bovine milk which change between farms, herds, individual cows, stage of lactation and types and levels of nutrition. Any variation in milk composition must have a return to either the consumer, the manufacturer or the farmer. It is believed that there are real economic advantages in the manipulation of the composition of milk. However, the industry must be careful it is not simply transfering costs from one section of the industry to another. The vertically integrated nature of the dairy industry and in particular the structure of the Livestock Improvement Corporation puts this organisation in a very strong position to facilitate changes to milk composition. It will be imperative that appropriate economic drivers are put in place to capture the benefits available in the manipulation of milk characteristics. There are also many potential pitfalls for participants in the dairy industry in following different milk composition strategies. It is recommended that research is continued at all levels of the industry in this field and that a long term plan is agreed to capture the benefits of changing milk composition for the benefit of New Zealand dairy farmers.... [Show full abstract]
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