SIGNIFICANCE OF PASTEURIZATION
Mrs. Uma Devi. H.M, Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, Brindavan College, Bangalore – 94.
Milk is regarded as the best, the cheapest and one of the most universally employed foods. It is seen that milk is the only animal food used in the raw state. Because of this fact, milk has been responsible for more sickness than all other foods.
Unpasteurized milk carries the disease causing organisms such
as tubercle bacilli, Escherichia, Salmonella, Brucella etc.
Some bacteria, Listeria monocytogenes can survive below
freezing temperatures and can with stand refrigeration.
It is particularly dangerous to individuals who have weakened
immune systems including pregnant women, Aids patient and
the very young and very old. It is therefore; of the greatest importance that the public supply of milk should be free from the above mentioned pathogenic microorganisms. Unquestionably the best and only real safeguard for milk is effective pasteurization.
Pasteurization is a process of heating a food, usually liquid to a specific temperature for a definite length of time (71.7 for 15 sec) and then cooling it immediately, the process named after its creator, French chemist and microbiologist Louis Pasteur.
Pasteurization is one of the most important safety measures in milk processing. Pasteurization ensures safety, quality and a longer shelf life for many beverages. It aims to reduce the viable pathogens to safe levels. This technique also increases the shelf life of milk, due to marked decrease in the total bacterial count. The benefit of pasteurization is that it renders milk much safer to drink, and also destroys some of the enzymes present in the milk, including enzymes which make milk casein to digest.
Therefore it is an indispensable technique still used in dairy industries in order to prevent microbial contamination and hence protection of public health.