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Frequently Asked Questions
   

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What is ultra-pasteurized milk vs regular pasteurized milk?

Pasteurized milk is milk which has been heat-treated to kill pathogens which cause disease. There are several different pasteurization techniques which can be used to make pasteurized milk. The goal of pasteurized milk is to make the milk safe to consume without curdling or coagulating, and without altering the flavor.

California Sunshine’s milk goes through a process called “Ultra-Pasteurization”, or extended shelf life (ESL), which allows the milk to have a longer shelf-life. Ultra-pasteurization is a process where the milk is heated to a minimum of 280°F and held for at least two seconds. The high heat used in the process kills a lot more bacteria than in the regular pasteurization. The packaging process is also very stringent, and almost sterile. Ultra-pasteurized milk can last from 30 to 90 days.

In regular pasteurized milk, milk goes through high temperature/short time (HTST) process, where the milk is to be heated to a minimum of 161°F for 15 to 30 seconds before being rapidly cooled and packaged. The heating process kills most of the bacteria in the milk. HTST pasteurized milk can last from 12 to 21 days.

     

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What does rBST Free mean?

California Sunshine’s milk is an rBST Free product. Recombinant bovine somatotropin (rBST) is a hormone used by some dairies to increase milk production. With growing consumer awareness of farming practices, dairies have begun to realize that treating their cows more humanely may result in a stronger and more loyal customer base. Because rBST can be expressed in milk, dairies also want consumers to know that their milk products do not contain the hormone, so that consumers can make their own choices about whether or not to consume it. As a result, dairies that produce milk products without the use of rBST have begun indicating this on their labels. rBST is a synthetic version of Bovine Somatotropin (BST), a natural hormone that can be found in the pituitary glands of all cows. Research discovered that cows with elevated levels of the hormone produced more milk, and that BST extracted from one cow and injected into another would result in higher levels of milk production for the BST treated cow. In the 1980s, synthesized BST was developed by recombining the DNA of bacteria to force them to produce the hormone, and testing began in dairy cattle. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) determined that because rBST is a species-specific growth hormone, milk from rBST treated cows is identical to that of cows not injected with the hormone.

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