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UV Light Treatment Could Provide More Vitamin D for Milk Drinkers

29 July 2016

UK - Ultraviolet (UV) light treated milk containing increased levels of vitamin D has been authorised for sale in the EU, and new advice from the UK government suggests some people may need to boost their vitamin D intake.

Studies have treated pasteurised milk with UV light to try to further extend shelf life, with the light also creating additional vitamin D in the product.

Conventional pasteurised milk only contains trace levels of vitamin D, while UV-treated whole milk could contain up to 3.2 micrograms per 100g, levy board AHDB Dairy said.

Public Health England (PHE) now recommends a daily vitamin D intake equivalent to 10 micrograms. Vitamin D can be made in the skin via exposure to sunlight or consumed in the diet.

It is difficult to know how much is made by sun exposure and, in the UK, people are reliant on dietary sources during autumn and winter. However, PHE found it was difficult to meet the 10 microgram recommendation through diet alone, so suggests people consider taking supplements.

This might mean a niche in the market which can be filled with a novel, vitamin D containing, UV-treated milk product, helping add value to liquid milk and promote its consumption, AHDB Dairy suggested.

TheCattleSite News Desk

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