Packed milk a threat to masses

LAHORE – Even packed milk of known brands is not safe for humans as it contains one or more hazardous chemicals, drugs or residue of antibiotics, reveals a study carried out by University of Animal and Veterinary Sciences.
Researchers of UVAS took samples of ten known brands of milk from the City and examined them at Quality Operation Laboratory of the university. The researchers found Aflatoxin in packets of nine brands (90 per cent), Chloramphenicol in five (50 per cent), Sulfa Drugs in four (40 per cent), Ampicillin in three (30 per cent) and Tetracycline in packs of two companies (20 per cent).
Physicians say that presence of residues of antibiotics and other drugs can cause serious health hazards.
The experts say that presence of traces of tetracycline in milk could cause staining of teeth and gums in consumers. They say that tetracycline is more dangerous for kids as it could cause defective teeth formation.
The experts say that aflatoxin is carcinogenic and it can cause liver cancer. They say that the liver starts shrinking and the end result is billary cirrhosis.
The experts say that Sulfa drugs directly affect kidneys. It causes bone marrow depression that leads to Aplastic Anaemia. Immature production of red blood cells (RBCs) leads to blood cancer. Presence of Sulfa drugs in milk can also cause severe skin allergy among consumers.
The researchers say that these adulterants enter into milk one way or the other.
The experts believe that polluted environment in which cattle are kept and fed, and the artificial means adopted by the owners to get extra milk are responsible for addition of hazardous chemicals and drugs. There is also indiscriminate use of antibiotics in dairy animals to overcome infectious diseases. The residues of such antibiotics are excreted in milk and ultimately enters into human food chain. Moreover, the middlemen add either of the preservatives such as antibiotics, formalin, hydrogen peroxide, quarternary ammonium compounds, bleaching powder and sodium bicarbonate in the milk to prevent it from spoilage during transportation to the processing units.

Source: The Nation, 12/7/2008




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