June 01, 2001


 AVMA supports proposed revision to milk ordinance

Posted May 15, 2001

The AVMA supports the National Mastitis Council's proposed revision to the Pasteurized Milk Ordinance.

The council has recommended adopting a geometric mean calculation for producer bulk milk somatic cell count and incrementally lowering the upper regulatory limit for SCC from 750,000 to 400,000 cells/ml by Jan 1, 2005.

The current policy is to use an arithmetic mean to monitor bulk milk SCC.

In a letter to the National Conference on Interstate Milk Shipments, which met in May to deliberate issues related to the ordinance and whether changes are needed, the AVMA explained its support for the recommendation.

"Use of a geometric mean will more accurately reflect the true SCC, enabling producers, veterinarians, and regulatory officials to separate herds that have a consistently high SCC from herds with a low SCC that have had an aberrant, high SCC value in one or two samples," AVMA president, Dr. James E. Nave wrote.

Most of the world already uses geometric mean calculations for SCC herd monitoring, Dr. Nave added, and adoption by the United States would be commensurate with globally accepted standards for international trade of milk and milk products.

The AABP also supports the proposed revision.