New standard on dairy permeate powders adopted at Codex

No clear definitions existed prior to new standard.

The International Dairy Federation (IDF) collaborated with Codex Alimentarius in the development, identification, elaboration and dissemination of a science-based international standard to promote the identity, composition, safety and quality of powdered dairy permeates as ingredients in food.

Experts from IDF, recognized as technical advisor to the Codex Commission of Milk & Milk Products, contributed to this work.

“Dairy permeate powders are new to the food market. There were no clear definitions available as a reference. This situation could jeopardize the true identity of these food ingredients and lead to unfair trade practices,” said Claus Heggum, leader of the IDF Action Team working on this subject. "In some countries, import restrictions have already been imposed. This new standard is necessary as a reference in trade."

IDF contributed, in particular, by providing a compromise on compositional specifications, including identification of the relevant analytical methods, and by clarifying the technical justifications relating to processing aids and food additives.

Dairy permeate powders include milk permeate powder and whey permeate powder. Whey permeate powder is a milk product obtained by drying whey permeate. Whey permeate is obtained by using a mechanical process to remove milk proteins from whey (excluding acid whey). Milk permeate powder is a milk product obtained by drying milk permeate. Milk permeate is obtained by using ultrafiltration to remove milk proteins from milk. When other lactose-containing milk products are used as the raw material, the powdered product will be “dairy permeate powder.”

“The anticipated increased demand in food and feed markets for whey permeate at regional and international levels will be a major challenge for the future. Regulatory frameworks need to evolve accordingly,” Dr. Nico van Belzen, IDF director general, said. “Global harmonization of fair trade practices through an international standard will be a key component of such evolving regulatory frameworks.”

Dr. van Belzen said collaboration with Codex will amplify the global consumer health impact of both organizations “by leveraging our mutual scientific resources to advance food safety, protect consumer interest and ensure fair practices in the food trade."

The new standard will be used in line with all existing and relevant Codex standards.

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