Milk from Minor Species: Scope and Opportunities

B. Chaudhary, Asha Ashok, S. J. Prajapati, Ranjan Kumar, Harin Sutariya and P.E. Kate

In certain parts of the world and local context, milk from other animal species has a significant share in milk production as well as consumption. Apart from bovine milk (85 % of milk produced worldwide), the worldwide milk production, for highest buffalo milk (11 %) followed by goat (2.3 %), sheep (1.4 %), camel milk (0.2 %)and horse, donkey and yak contribution being 0.1 % additionally, a marginal production of milk from reindeer, llama, zebra and eland are also reported. These milch animals can resist harsh climate condition and their milk production can be increased by giving them favourite environment and improving breeding. Many minor milk verities such as camel, goat, sheep, mare, donkey and yak milk have various health benefits due to their high level of health promoting components like a short chain fatty acid, PUFAs vitamin (A. C, B12), essential amino acids, CLAs insulin like substance etc. Many minor milk species is used to cure prevent the disease such as diabetes, cancer, obesity, atherosclerosis, protein, related allergies etc. Horse and donkey milk which resemble the human milk composition can be used as an alternative to infant feeding. In future, milk from minor species can be considered as a functional food. Attempts were already made for production milk and milk products from these milks but yet processing parameters should be standardized/modified to [produce quality milk products which can be comparable to cow and buffalo milk products in terms of sensor, textural characteristics and yield.

Key words: Milk, Health promotion, quality, processing, minor species.