Milk Adulteration Tests at Home

I also reveal the Indian Cow’s Milk Brand I use.

In this blog post, I’m going to share 4 simple milk adulteration tests you can do at home and recommend one milk brand that I’m using currently. These tests don’t need any technical skills or equipment. A simple milk test kit is all that is required.

Around 68.7% of milk and milk products sold in India are not as per the standards specified by Food Safety and Standards Act of India (FSSAI).

-The Economic Times

We, as Indians, love and consume milk and milk products. But, the milk quality is often overlooked. Hence, I chose to address this topic.

Milk could be adulterated with a variety of things: acid, glucose, starch, etc. These adulterants can cause gastric problems, kidney disorders, and cancer. Here’s a list of the most common milk adulterants:

  • Water
  • Milk from other animals
  • Starch
  • Urea
  • Detergent or Soap Powder
  • White Paint
  • Micro-organisms

Why is Milk Adulterated?

Adulteration is done for a variety of reasons. Below are some of the adulterants and the reason they are added in milk:

AdulterantsReasons
Acids such as Benzoic acid and Salicylic acidTo increase the shelf-life of milk
StarchTo increase milk viscosity or thickness
Soap/DetergentTo increase foaming
Sugar (Glucose)To reduce fat content
UreaTo increase nitrogen content in milk
Milk Adulterants and Reasons for Adulteration

Milk Adulteration Tests:

You can perform the tests below without the milk test kit:

Water: To check if milk is adulterated with water, simply put a drop of milk on a slanted, polished surface. If the milk does not flow or flows slowly leaving a white trail, it’s an indication that water is not added. Whereas, milk will flow easily without leaving a flow if water has been added it.

Detergent: You can detect detergent with or without a milk test kit. Take equal amounts of milk and water in a glass container. Quantity of milk and water can be approximately 5 – 10 ml. Now, shake the milk-water mixture. If you see the formation of lather, it means the milk contains detergent. Pure milk will show a thin layer of foam created because of shaking.

If you want more information about the chemicals and steps of milk adulteration tests, here’s a list of 4 simple tests:

Detergent: For detecting detergent in milk, you need bromocresol purple solution. Mix 1 – 2 drops of the bromocresol solution in 5 ml of milk. If you see a sharp purple coloration, understand that you milk is adulterated with urea. In case of normal milk, you will see a faint violet color.

Test Duration: 5 minutes

Urea Test: The detection of urea in milk requires a chemical reagent called ‘para-dimethyl amino benzaldehyde’. Mix 5 ml each of milk sample and the reagent. If your milk is normal, it will show a slight yellow color due to the natural urea present in milk. But, it the milk is adulterated, you will see the milk turning yellow in color very clearly.

Test Duration: 5 minutes

Starch Test: You can detect starch in milk by adding a drop of iodine solution to the milk sample. If your milk sample contains starch, the moment you add iodine solution, the milk will turn blue-black in color because of the combination or reaction of starch and iodine.

Test Duration: 5 minutes

Microbial Quality (MQ) Test: Milk may contain harmful bacteria in large quantities is it is not pasteurized properly. To detect micro-organisms in milk, methylene blue indicator is used. When you add methylene blue indicator to milk, it turns blue in color. Now if the milk is properly pasteurized, it will not become colorless i.e. it will retain the blue color for 25 minutes or more. If the milk is heavily infested with micro-organisms, it becomes colorless within 25 minutes.

So, put a drop of methylene blue indicator in a small sample of milk and observe for 25 minutes to see the color change.

Test Duration: 25 minutes

The Milk Test Kit:

The benefit of buying the milk test kit is that you get whatever you need to perform the milk adulteration tests in one shot. Moreover, the test kit is organized in such a way that you can perform it without hassle. It is definitely better than procuring chemicals individually for testing milk. You can order a milk test kit from Amazon for Rs. 1000 or so.

But if you want to perform tests and try out multiple milk brands, then I suggest you go for a tried and tested cow’s milk. For example, Country Delight.

Country Delight’s Cow’s Milk

At this point, I want to introduce Country Delight’s Cow’s Milk. This is the one I have started using recently after trying well-known brands like Nandini, Good Life, and Amul.

One thing we noticed with the well-known milk brands is that, we were unable to make curd at home: the curd took really long to curdle and did not taste normal, we get ropy curd, formation of odd-smelling fat layer on top of the curd. Ready-made curd also had a peculiar odour- like that of chlorine. So, we finally decided to try out something new and luckily we found Country Delight.

You can order Country Delight Cow’s milk on their Online Milk Delivery Mobile App tonight and the delivery guy delivers milk at your doorstep next morning between 5 am – 8 am. The delivery person gives a call the very first time you place the order in their app. From the second order onwards, milk will be delivered without waking you up.

Also, the app requires you to pay minimum Rs. 300/-. Once you pay 300/-, you get a cash back of Rs. 300/-. So, your wallet will have Rs. 600/- which you can use to pay for daily milk orders till it is exhausted.

There a few more things you get along with the Country Delight milk packet:

Milk Adulteration Test Result of Country Delight’s Cow’s Milk

Milk Test Kit: It consists of strips, test-tubes, and 1 dropper.

Instructions: The leaflet gives step-wise instructions a in simple language (English/Kannada) with pictures.

Milk Test Report: Country Delight exceeded our expectations by delivering an entire report consisting of a battery of 70 milk adulteration tests or quality tests performed in an accredited lab. The report showed the all the test results.

Information About Country Delight’s Cow’s Milk: They also give information about how Country Delight’s cow’s milk is procured and what goes into it’s making.

A Cloth Bag: All of the above plus the milk packet comes in a branded cloth bag which you can use to hang on your door for collecting the packet of milk every morning.

Few More Benefits of Country Delight Cow’s Milk:

Now we are able to make curd without hassle. The curd tastes normal and has a slight yellow color which is normally seen in cow’s milk and the curd made using it.

Another point to note is that, their pricing is reasonable as compared to other brands. One 500 ml packet costs Rs. 34/-.

If you have performed a milk adulteration test before for another brand, let me know your experience in the comments.

References:

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