Category Archives: Health

Fresh Milk versus Powdered Milk

Ambewela Milk

Ambewela Milk

With all the scares and scandals that are associated with powdered milk, lets examine both sides of the story

Milk Powder

This is the predominant form in Sri Lanka and for some it is a matter of privilege and pride to say that they drink a certain brand of powdered milk.  Now people are running to distance themselves from those brands and companies.  Let’s examine some of the factors.

  1. Long shelf life, which is generally more than one year
  2. Easy to prepare.  Just add water
  3. Fortified with minerals and vitamins and sometimes various other chemicals which are said to be beneficial to brain development in children, or for preventing osteoporosis in women.
  4. Some say it tastes better than fresh milk
  5. Some also say that it is creamier (more on that later)
  6. Some argue but haven’t really proven that the best components are removed and used for manufacturing other products and then the milk has vitamins and minerals added to it
  7. There is new evidence to show that powdered milk contains more cholesterol causing agents than fresh milk
  8. One packet of 400 grams of milk powder generally gives us 3.5 litre of milk which is equal to 17.5 glasses of milk.  Generally, people have gotten used to using the wrong quantity of powder meaning that the milk that is made is more creamier, leading to lesser number of glasses.

Fresh Milk

There are a few producers that sell fresh milk in Tetra packs and these are available in most shops and supermarkets.  The image of this post shows the Ambewela product lineup which includes 1 litre and 200 ml packs

Points to consider

  1. A more natural version of the drink that many people say to be Nature’s Energy Drink
  2. Compared to raw milk which can spoil quickly, fresh milk is packed in TetraPaks for a shelf life of several months
  3. If you think the taste is not to your liking, you could add a bit of sugar or a flavouring agent such as Malt, Chocolate, etc
  4. If you argue that powdered milk is creamier, that is either because you have used less than the recommended amount of water, or because the butterfat content is higher.
  5. Compared to the cost of milk powder which is approx Rs 325 for a 400 gram packet, a 1 litre carton of milk from Ambewela, Rich Life or a similar local manufacturer is in the range of Rs. 140.  Once opened, the carton can be kept in the refrigerator for several days.
  6. If you believe that you cannot use it up in several days, the 200 ml pack is approximately Rs 35 and is equal to one glass of milk.
  7. If the requirement is to give your child one glass of milk per day for a month you spend approx Rs 1,000 if you buy the individual servings.

For the dairy farmers, the price they get per litre of raw milk is less than Rs. 50.  If the government could step in via Milco and expand their facilities, fresh milk could be made available countrywide at a much more affordable price than what the private sector is offering and their would be some healthy competition.  Milco could make a higher profit than what it is doing now.

Food for thought – think about it.