Food is often adulterated with additives due to economic considerations, for example cost issues.
The adulteration of food results in a reduction of quality of the product. A good example is the admixture of significantly cheaper cow’s milk in high-quality sheep or goat milk products.
Goat’s and sheep’s cheese have become more popular on the market over the past years and are manufactured in large quantities. The addition of cow’s milk to these products is common practice because the production of goat and sheep’s milk is subject to seasonal fluctuations. In EU Directive no. 273/2008, the addition of cow’s milk is regulated at 0.5%. The admixture of food-altering additives is legally governed on a national and international level and thus, requires rigorous examinations.
Our product offer contains several tests suitable to prove cow’s milk in sheep’s and goat’s milk products. In doing so, you can ensure that your high-quality products are actually free of adulterating additives. Isoelectric focusing for the detection of γ-casein is the only reference method available at the moment to detect cow casein in goat’s or sheep’s cheese or milk. In addition to this complicated analysis, which can only be performed in a well-equipped laboratory, it is possible to use the immunochromatographic techniques for the verification of the above.
The Chinese milk scandal discovered in 2008 aroused a lot of interest. In China, milk was diluted with water for financial reasons. In order to feign a high-protein content of the diluted milk, melamine was added to the milk, an organic substance that is rich in nitrogen. The adulterated foods were used for baby food (milk powder). As a result, thousands of infants in China were seriously ill, some of them even died. In infants, the intake of melamine led to the formation of kidney stones and triggered kidney dysfunctions through to kidney failure. Limit values and more stringent controls were introduced in order to avoid a similar scandal in the future.