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Good Milking Handling Practices

Milk is the main product from a dairy enterprise, produced basically as food for human consumption. Milk is a very good media for bacterial and other micro-organisms development. Clean milk production results in milk that:

Is safe for human consumption and free from disease causing micro-organisms

Has a high keeping quality

Has a high commercial value

Can be transported over long distances

Is a high quality base for processing, resulting in high quality products


Restrain the cow. If the udder is clean or only some dry dirt is attached, clean it with a dry cloth, paper or fine wood shavings When the udder and the cow are dirty, wash udder, teats and flank of the animal with clean water preferably add a disinfectant. Wipe with a clean cloth (one piece per cow). Apply suitable milking salve on each teat. Check for mastitis with a strip cup or any other method. Dispose fore-milk. Isolate sick animals and milk them last (their milk should not be mixed with good milk).


Do not excite the animals

Regularize milking intervals

Squeeze the teat and do not pull.

Avoid incomplete milking

Milking should be complete within 8-10 minutes

Use a teat dip after milking and apply it in a proper way

Milk Handling

Use a clean white muslin cloth for filtering immediately after milking

Disinfect, wash and dry the filter cloth after use

Weigh and record milk per cow

Store the milk in cool and clean place

Don't store other materials such as chemicals close to the stored milk

Deliver milk to the market as soon as possible


Use seamless containers preferably aluminium or stainless steel

Rinse excess milk with cold and clean water

Scrub with a brush using hot water mixed with a soap or detergent

Rinse with cold water and place the utensils to dry on a rack

Store utensils in a safe, clean, well ventilated place

Milker's Hygiene

Be healthy and clean

Maintain short finger nails and hair cut (ladies can cover their heads when milking as guard to falling hair)

Don't smoke during milking time

Wear clean white overall and gumboots

Milking Environment

Milk in a clean and non smelling place

A shed can be permanent or movable, it should be cleaned after every milking

Where possible provide a cement floor for ease of cleaning

Water should drain easily and away from the shed

Provide a clean feed trough, water trough and protected store

Provide clean water.

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