Milk production mainly involves the steps of milk collection, sterilization, preservation, packaging and transportation, etc. Hygienic problems at any of these steps can lead to excessive levels of bacteria in the final products. Therefore, dairy farms and milk production industry has a high requirement for sanitation. As an efficient broad-spectrum bactericide, ozone sterilization has the advantages of no dead angle or no secondary pollution, which lays the foundation for the application of ozone in food industry. As early as 1997, ozone received the GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe) label from the FDA, thus becoming a widely used bactericide in the food processing industry. Dairy farm ozone application and milk products ozone treatment can solve many health concerns. If you want to learn more about ozone, please refer to our Blog: An introduction of ozone.
Let’s look at how ozone is applied in dairy farms and milk production industry.
1. Ozone creates a better sanitation condition.
The healthy growth of dairy cows requires both related breeding facilities and a hygienic breeding site. A better sanitation condition can help control the spread of bacteria and prevent potential diseases. Cleaning and sterilization in dairy farms must be done on a regular basis. When using ozone for sterilization, ozone gas at a concentration of 6-10 PPM can effectively sterilize the breeding site. In addition to playing a sterilization role, ozone can also effectively remove the ammonia, hydrogen sulfide and other smelly gases coming from the cow excrements. So, ozone can be used in both the sterilization of the breeding sites and the control of odors. In addition to dairy farms, ozone can also be effectively used for the removal of kitchen odors, pet odors, smoke odors and other odors due to its strong oxidation effect on odor removal.
2. Hoof bath
In breeding sites, cows are prone to disease from bacterial infections due to their wet hooves. To prevent such diseases, a hoof bath should be performed after regular hoof trimming. In the past, formalin solution was mainly used to sterilize cattle hooves, while copper or zinc sulfate was sometimes used. The problem with formalin solutions is that their effectiveness decreases as temperature drops. And the use of copper or zinc sulfate can lead to corrosion of metal pipes in farms. In this regard, ozone is a good way to avoid such problems. Ozone can be used both for a highly effective sterilization and to avoid the use of chemicals. In addition, dairy farm ozone application is also useful for treating injured or infected hooves.
3. Cow teats washing and sterilization
Washing the cow teats and the surrounding skin with ozone water prior to milking can achieve a good cleaning and sterilization effect. By doing this, the bacteria level in the milking machines will be reduced, as well as the likelihood of cross-infection and disease.
4. Drinking water sterilization
Ozone is effective in killing bacteria and microorganisms present in the water for dairy cows to drink. The spread of waterborne diseases could be better prevented by providing cows with ozone water. Ozone can also remove carcinogenic chlorinated by-products such as chloramines and trihalomethanes which may exist in the water, thus reducing the impact on the liver and kidney function of cows. Regular consumption of ozone water by cows also reduces the quantity of bacteria in the gut and improves the absorption of nutrients from the food, making it more beneficial for cow growth.
5. Air sterilization in milking parlour
A milking parlour is a place where cows, staff and equipment come and go frequently. The main source of pollution here is air, so air sterilization is essential. In the traditional process of sterilization, ultraviolet will leave dead corners in places that cannot be irradiated, and its sterilization effect will decrease with the increase of temperature. The use of ozone for air sterilization can achieve a much better effect with no dead angle or secondary pollution. In addition, the sterilization effect of ozone increases with the increase of air humidity, which is very suitable for dairy farm use. Ozone can directly destroy the DNA or RNA of bacteria or viruses, causing their death and disability to reproduce. Dairy farm ozone application can achieve the instant killing of Escherichia coli, FMDV, bacillus subtilis, second liver virus, staphylococcus aureus and other bacteria or viruses, with the sterilization rate can be as high as 99.99%.
6. Sterilization of milk pipelines and containers
Ozone water can achieve the best sterilization effect in milk pipelines and containers. Ozone water at a concentration of 1-1.5 mg/L can achieve the efficient killing of staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, yeast, hepatitis B surface antigen and other bacteria or viruses within 1.5 minutes.
7. Sterilization of dairy production line and packaging
In addition to the sterilization of pipelines and containers, it is particularly important to sterilize the air in the production area during milk production. Liquid milk canning and milk powder packaging workshops are the key air sterilization spots. Ozone air sterilization can kill a variety of viruses to prevent the spoilage of dairy products. Ozone can also kill potential yeasts to avoid further fermentation of dairy products that will affect the quality of products. In addition to dairy products, ozone has a wide range of sterilizing applications in liquid beverage production. We’ve covered bottled water ozone treatment in our previous blogs.
Therefore, from the above points, we can see that both ozone gas and ozone water have a great role in dairy breeding sites, dairy cow cleaning, as well as the sterilization of production equipment and other aspects. Compared with ultraviolet and other chemical methods, dairy farm ozone application can be the most effective and reliable solution for industries with a high requirement for sanitation. Utilizing the great sterilization effect from ozone’s strong oxidation, dairy farms and milk production industry can effectively sterilize raw materials and the whole production process, so as to ensure the quality and safety of the final dairy products.