Dairy farmers want milk supply chain to take action on light-damage

Milk exposed to light can lose up to 28% of its protein in just 20 minutes, research says
Milk exposed to light can lose up to 28% of its protein in just 20 minutes, research says

A majority of farmers want the dairy supply chain to take more action on light damage on milk due to its potential to damage nutrients and taste.

New research shows the majority of British dairy farmers are aware of the problem of light damage, affecting milk's nutrients and its taste.

Scientific studies have shown that both natural and indoor lighting can impact the nutritional quality, taste and smell of dairy products.

Testing by Cornell University shows that some nutrients, in particular protein and vitamin B2 (riboflavin), can decrease by 28% after just 20 minutes of light exposure.



Consumers also believe that retailers should take action with over half (55%) saying that supermarkets should be proactively looking to package milk produce in ‘light protected’ packaging.

However, fewer than a third (29%) of consumers are aware that light damages milk, research by packaging technology company Noluma shows.



Three in five dairy farmers (62%) also say that the whole supply chain should take more responsibility for the issue.

The research also finds that over three-quarters (77%) of dairy farmers are concerned that the quality of their produce may diminish before it reaches consumers because of current packaging standards.

Most farmers surveyed (90%) say that they would like to be more involved in decisions around the packaging of their produce to ensure it is as effective as possible.

Surveys were conducted by Censuswide among 1000 UK consumers and 150 UK dairy farmers in March 2019.