The Ministry of Agrarian Policy postponed the introduction of new milk standards from January 1 to July 1, 2018.
The Delegation of the European Union in Ukraine explained what Ukrainian milkmen need to be prepared for.
The European Union will forbid the Ukrainian to sell milk from private households. Among fears: dairy products will rise in price, but all the same will not become more qualitative. Populists say that the peasants will not only disappear the source of additional earnings, they will begin mass-cutting cows for meat. As a result, we will consume low-quality foreign milk.
Many of the fears that are spreading were inherent in Poland, the Czech Republic, and the Baltic countries when they introduced similar European requirements. Traveling these countries, you can be sure that these myths and fears were not justified. Of course, to raise standards, you need to invest. However, the central European farmers have survived and are flourishing today.
Therefore, what is the essence of the changes and how will the new norms for milk affect Ukrainian farmers and consumers?
The introduction of new norms will be gradual, so that manufacturers can adapt their production. A transition period of two years is envisaged.
Often, milk from the citizens corresponds only to today's norms of the second grade due to poor sanitation during milking and storage. However, it is possible to increase the level of safety of so-called "home" milk. To do this, when milking you need to wash your hands and be in clean clothes. Clean containers and milking plants should be used. Also, milk should be stored at a temperature below 10 ° C.
Sick animals need to be treated. After using antibiotics, it is worthwhile to wait until their remains are removed from the animal's body. This is a standard practice in all countries of the world. After all, when the remnants of antibiotics get from the milk into the human body, this will increase resistance to antibiotics.
These measures do not require significant funds. And the state can compensate for 20 percent of the cost of purchasing new equipment. As a result, the milk will be safer. And this is what the consumer expects and is entitled to.
There is such a benefit for farmers: higher class milk can be sold more expensive.
They can be united in cooperatives. Together, it will be easier and cheaper to implement these measures and increase the grade of milk. There will also be funds for the development of infrastructure for the delivery of the product to processing plants. In 2018, the Ukrainian government allocates 1 billion UAH. on cooperation and development of small farming.
New standards better protect consumers. Thanks to them, we will drink safe milk from healthy cows. The risk of poisoning will be minimized.
Improving the safety of milk does not mean a change in quality. However, thanks to the new rules, you as a consumer can be sure that any milk in the store will not harm your health.
Today in Ukraine only milk of extra variety meets the high requirements for safety in the EU. For presentation, the level of the allowed number of microorganisms of milk of the first grade is 5 times higher than that allowed in the EU.
The level of somatic cells is also 200 thousand/cm3 more than in the EU.
The number of somatic cells shows that the cow from which the milk was obtained was healthy. Infections and pathogens can be transmitted from the cow to consumers.
The level of microorganisms is 3 times higher for milk of the highest class.
According to the planned changes, the use of second-grade milk for food production after the transition period is complete will be limited, but allowed for the production of animal feed or casein. For milk of the first class, the permissible level of somatic cells is reduced. Although the new rate will still be much larger than allowed in the EU (500 and 400 thousand/cm3, respectively).
Norms for milk of the first and the highest grade will not change.
As a result, when the new standards work, only the extra-class milk will fully comply with EU standards. In Ukraine, for the period from January to October 2017, the share of such milk increased to 15%, received from agricultural enterprises.
Milk of the second grade does not necessarily disappear. It can be further processed at dairies. Although the nutritional value after this will be significantly reduced. Limitations of such milk will occur gradually with a transition period. And even after that, it can be used for the production of animal feed and casein.