Ozone in the Dairy Industry

Sanitation practices on farms that produce dairy products are essential to the quality of the final product. A wide variety of dairy products can benefit from the use of ozone treatment as a disinfectant. Some common products that are improved with the use of ozone include fluid milk, powdered milk, and cheeses. Each farm must examine their sanitation procedures to ensure a micro-biologically safe product reaches consumers.

In a April 2016 study, scientists examined the impact of ozone treatment on sanitation practices used in dairy farms. The International Journal of Diary Technology says, “Ozone treatment is a cost-effective and eco-friendly food-processing technology.” Ozone is the second strongest common oxidizing agent after deadly fluorine and also leaves no harmful chemical residue behind.

The use of ozone to treat dairy products is less expensive than other methods. Researchers on the project claim ozone “can be generated on demand on-site and, as opposed to conventional chemical sanitizers, it requires neither transportation nor storage.” Ozone treatment also uses less power consumption to function than other methods, “In addition, the running costs of ozonation systems are low because they only consume a limited amount of electricity.”

The power of ozone also doesn’t lead to downsides when the product is ready to consume. “Despite being a highly effective disinfectant, ozone does not leave a chemical residue on either food or food contact surfaces because it quickly auto decomposes to nontoxic products, thereby reducing both the environmental impacts and costs of the company,” scientists said.

Heating processes are commonly used to treat the milk we all enjoy for consumption, however this can negatively impact its nutritional value and sensory properties. On the other hand, scientists found ozone did not negatively impact the nutritional values or taste of the fluid milk studied.

Scientists see the long term benefits of ozone use in the dairy industry. They concluded, "The clear and convincing communication of the overall benefits provided by this advanced, cost-effective and environmentally friendly technology is a prerequisite to widespread adoption and usage of ozone by the global dairy industry."

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