The final report of the Departmental Committee on the Production and Distribution of Milk was issued on January 2nd. It is pointed out that the importance of pure milk in securing health for the nation's children is still insufficiently recognized, and that few people realize how far we are from attaining not only an adequate supply, but a pure supply, or the inherent difficulties in securing both at a price within the reach of the poorest consumer.High prices designed to maintain production during the war, it is stated, have checked consumption and offer no permanent solution to the problems before the dairying industry. The committee have appreciated from the first that it is not high prices that the farmer requires or desires, but a reasonable profit on a very arduous industry and that by steady development on the lines of advanced and scientific agricultural knowledge production can be increased and its cost greatly diminished, prices lowered, and reasonable profits maintained. The recommendations of the Committee are interesting and important. Under the heading of national policy it is submitted that the aims of an enlightened milk policy should be to bring about the utmost possible economy in production in order that the consumption of milk may be increased to the desired level that an adequate supply of milk may be brought within the reach of the poorest families, that the hygienic quality of milk should be improved that the total supply should be increased in order to meet the extended consumption1 that should follow improved quality and the education of the public with regard to the nutritive properties of milk, and that the exploitation of the producer or the consumer by any trust or combination, either of a provincial, national, or international character, should be prevented. In regard to education and research it is suggested that the development of research in dairying should be assisted to the fullest extent that provision should be made for adequate itinerant instruction in every county with regard to the production, management, and utilization of milk, that longer and better proportioned courses of training should be provided for teachers of dairying that educational centres should demonstrate the best method of farm and dairy practice and that courses of instruction in dairy factory management should be provided. It is also proposed that further instruction should be provided for farmers and herdsmen as to the best methods of feeding and management of dairy herds and of handling milk intended for human consumption, and that further financial assistance should be given to dairy research institutes to enable them to carry out investigations into the efficacy of milking machines. To attain a reduction in the cost of production of milk it is proposed that systems of herd management should be improved only bulls of a good milking strain should be used economical and scientific feeding of dairy cattle should be studied pastures should be improved by suitable manuring the practice of cooperative purchase should be developed and a suitable system of accountkeeping adopted. The keeping of milk records is advocated, and for this purpose it is submitted that the staff of the Board of Agriculture should be increased so as to facilitate the formation of new milk record societies, that courses of training should be provided for intending milk recorders, and that the information collected by the milk recording societies should be analysed by the agricultural colleges and the results published in a simple and concise form.
British Food Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 1, 1920
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