Submitted to: Journal of Dairy Science
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/24/2011
Publication Date: 6/30/2011
Citation: Lombard, J.E., Norman, H.D., Korpal, C.A., Rodriquez, J.M., Wright, J.R. 2011. Current level of compliance with EU bulk tank SCC standards and proposed US standards based on data from four Federal Milk Marketing Orders. Journal of Animal Science 89(E-Suppl. 1)/Journal of Dairy Science 94(E-Suppl. 1):428(abstr. 353). Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: Milk quality in the United States is evaluated annually using bulk-tank somatic cell count (BTSCC) data provided by 4 of the Nation's 10 Federal Milk Marketing Orders. The data represents more than 30,000 producers and 50% of milk produced in the US. The reported BTSCC is used for regulatory purposes to determine compliance with the current US limit of 750,000 cells/ml. If 3 of 5 consecutive monthly shipments exceed 750K then regulatory action is taken. The objective of this study was to evaluate compliance of producers with the newly proposed US BTSCC limits. BTSCC data from producers that shipped between 15 and 22 shipments between Jan. 2009 to Oct 2010 were included in the analysis. Four different SCC levels of compliance based on US standards were evaluated: 750K; 600K; 500K; 400K. In addition, the EU standard of 400K based on a 3 month geometric mean was evaluated. For the 12 month period ending Oct 2010, 1.0% of producers and 0.2% of milk exceeded the current US limit of 750K; 4.7% of producers and 1.4% of milk exceeded the proposed 600K limit. Although the proposed 400K limit would be the same in the US and the EU, differences in how the limits are calculated and used for regulatory purposes change the percent of producers in compliance in the two countries. Although 23.3% of producers exceeded the proposed US 400K limit, only 16.1% of producers would have exceeded the current EU standard. For herds shipping <907 metric tons of milk in the 12 month period, 28.0% would have exceeded the proposed 400K US limit and 19.5% would have exceeded the current EU standard. Only 4.1% and 2.2% of herds shipping more than 9,072 metric tons would have exceeded the proposed 400K US limit and current EU limit, respectively. If implemented, the proposed phased in reduction to a 400K BTSCC limit would result in a substantial increase in producers and milk, primarily those with <100 cows, which would exceed the regulatory limit. Producer education and implementation of programs to lower BTSCC will be critical in minimizing the impact of the proposed reduction in BTSCC.