To check adulteration in milk, a government laboratory has come up with three equipment to check adulteration in the vital food item at a price less than 50 paise.

The equipments have been developed by Central Electronics Engineering Research Institute (CSIR-CEERI). One of the equipment has already been launched, the other two will see commercial exploitation in next coming months.

“Milk production is to the tune of about 146 million tonnes in the country. But it is feared that over 60 per cent of the milk is contaminated due to malpractices in milk supply chain which includes dilution with unsafe water.

“The milk is otherwise said to be adulterated with contaminants such as urea, salt, detergent, liquid soap, boric acid, caustic soda, soda and hydrogen peroxide which have hazardous health effects,” Minister for Science and Technology, Harsh Vardhan said.

India ranks number one in the world for milk production, contributing to about 18 per cent of the world’s total milk.

“The gravity of the situation had been such that NITI Aayog identified the problem of detecting adulteration in the milk within three minutes at Rs 4 or less, as one of the Grand Challenge Areas being considered under the Atal Innovation Mission,” the minister said.

In this backdrop the equipment, ‘Ksheer-Scanner’, instantaneously detects the above-identified adulterants in milk. It is a low- cost portable system with user-friendly features. It enables detection of contaminants in just 40-45 seconds at the per sample cost of less than 50 paise. It detects major contaminant like the urea, salt, detergent, soap and soda. The equipment uses electrochemical technology to detect contamination.

Girish Sahni, Director-General of CSIR said the system offers automated scanning of raw milk samples at milk collection points.

Milk Testing
          Milk Testing

“It is safe to use and ideal for installation at milk collection centres of milk societies at village and tehsil levels. The system can also be useful for on-the-spot milk testing by food inspectors.

The system has been successfully tested at various dairies located in Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana,” Sahni said.

Around 35-40 systems were sold by Rajasthan Electronics and Instruments Ltd, a Mini-ratna PSU and Surat based Alpine Technologies.

CSIR is also in the process of building a portfolio of technologies for detecting milk adulteration and analysis of milk quality, namely, ultrasonic-based milk contents analyser (KsheerAnalyser) for fats, solid non-fats, protein, lactose, density and water addition.

Infra-red Radiation based Fat Analyser (Irfan); Rapid Milk Analyser (KsheerAnalyser+); Milk Adulteration and Content Analysis (Ksheer Scanner Plus) and Handheld Milk Adulteration Tester for domestic usage (Ksheer Tester).