Ten timely tips for good tasting milk

Keeping pasteurized milk cold also helps to keep it safe and tasting good.

            Milk tastes best at 35 ºF according to those who know, including the Western Dairy Association. Milk and dairy products contain nine essential nutrients: calcium, potassium, phosphorus, protein, vitamin A, D and B12, riboflavin and niacin. Who could ask for more?

            Michigan State University Extension offers ten tips to keep your milk safe and tasting good.

  1. Purchase pasteurized milk. Pasteurization is a process that kills harmful bacteria by heating milk to a specific temperature for a set period of time. Serious health risks from dangerous microorganisms such as Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria can come from unpasteurized milk.
  2. When grocery shopping, pick up your milk and other refrigerated items last, just before you check out.
  3. Carry your milk home from the store in an insulated bag with other cold or frozen groceries.
  4. When you arrive home from grocery shopping, put your milk and other cold foods away first.
  5. Make sure your refrigerator is 35º-40º F. Keep an appliance thermometer in your refrigerator.
  6. Keep milk in its original container.
  7. When milk is poured out of the container, never pour it back in. If you do, you risk contaminating the milk in the container.
  8. When you are finished using the milk, put the milk container back in the refrigerator. Don’t let it sit out.
  9. Don’t store milk in the door. Store milk on a shelf in your refrigerator. The door is the warmest part of your refrigerator and you want your milk in the coldest part, which actually is in the back.
  10. When transporting milk and dairy products for a get together or picnic, keep the cooler shut, use plenty of ice and keep a thermometer in the cooler.

Remember, to have the safest and best tasting milk, keep it cold. Since milk is a perishable food, it is at risk of going bad when kept at temperatures in the food safety danger zone (40 to 140°F). Milk must be stored at or below 40°F to be safe.

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