Study Backs Up rbST Supporters’ Claims on Milk Labeling
Submitted by Editor on Fri, 07/25/2008 - 12:45pm.
Differences Not ‘Biologically Meaningful’ in Three Types of Labeled Milk
A new scientific study published in the July issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association (JADA) reports the results of the first in-depth survey study comparing retail milk for quality, nutritional value and levels of different milk hormones, including bovine somatotropin (bST). The study found that there were “no meaningful differences” in the composition of milk with the three different label claims, according to a news release this week from the Penn State Department of Dairy and Animal Science.
Prompted by the recent trend in food labeling based on dairy cow management, the study looked specifically at three label claims: conventional milk (including milk from cows treated with rbST or recombinant bovine somatotropin), rbST-free milk and organic milk.
While minor differences were observed in milk composition for the three labels, the differences were not “biologically meaningful.” The coauthors of the study concluded that label claims “were not related to any meaningful differences in the milk compositional variables measured,” a claim that supporters of rbST in the dairy industry have been making from the start of the controversy over milk labeling. Read More
Just as we have been told all along, there is no difference in the milk from cows exposed to different management styles. After traveling to both coasts two weeks ago and talking to consumers along the way, words like “hormones” have negative a connotation regardless of the science and truth. Regardless of whether you as a producer decide to adopt certain technologies, educating consumers on the truth about the technologies available to feed a growing population is a story we all need to be telling.