One of the reasons for this high regard is that New Zealand dairies are held to some of the most stringent standards in the world. In New Zealand, the Dairy and Plant Products Group (a division of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry-MAF) provides assurance to consumers, both domestic and international, that New Zealand’s dairy products are safe and true to label. And, the government mandates that all dairy products must be free of antibiotics, chemical residues and hormones (rBST is illegal in New Zealand). Grazing practices, the treatment of cattle, collection and storage methods, and processing all affect the quality of whey protein. When choosing a whey protein supplement, it is important to keep these points in mind.
Pasture fed cattle are exposed to a wide variety of soil-based pathogens, which means they will naturally develop more antibodies. Healthy green grass also provides Vitamins, Minerals, and beneficial enzymes (aiding in its assimilation). Intensively managed, year-round pastures in New Zealand furnish nearly 100% of herd feed requirements, so the cows need little or no supplemental grain. In New Zealand-style grazing systems, the animals are rotated frequently to fresh, small pastures and produce more milk per acre. A 1993 survey determined that greater than 40% of United States dairy heifer calves had serum immunoglobulin G (IgG) concentrations of less than 10 mg/ml. The Journal of Dairy Sciences reports, “U.S. society will soon demand that agriculture back off, at least to some extent, from confinement and pay greater attention to agricultural animal comfort and happiness.”
In New Zealand, dairy farmers use high-quality rye grass and white clover pasture virtually year-round.
WHY SHOULD YOU USE NEW ZEALAND WHEY?
Clean source of whey protein with a great protein and mineral profile
Milk comes from Grass Fed Cattle
NO Antibiotic residues, which means a healthy gut flora and immune system
NO Hormone and Pesticide residues, which means no endocrine disrupters
The use of antibiotics is illegal in the New Zealand dairy industry. The MAF requires a screening test for antibiotic residues, while in the US, antibiotic use is widely practiced on dairy farms. Most US dairy farms store antibiotics on the premises to treat cows that are about to give birth. The Dairy Science and Technology division of the University of Guelph reports, “the presence of antibiotic residues in milk products is very problematic for at least three reasons;
In the production of fermented milks, antibiotic residues can slow or destroy the growth of the fermentation bacteria.
From a human health point of view, some people are allergic to specific antibiotics, and their presence in food consumed can have severe consequences.
Frequent exposure to low level antibiotics can cause microorganisms to become resistant to them, through mutation, so that they are ineffective when needed to fight a human infection.
For these reasons, it is extremely important that milk from cows being treated with antibiotics is withheld from the milk supply.
While certain antibiotics can be extremely helpful in combating short-term bacterial infection, their long-term ingestion, even in small amounts can actually weaken human immune systems. Also, antibiotics destroy beneficial bacteria or probiotics in the human digestive tract which are critically important for overall digestive health, including the assimilation of food and micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals.
Dairy management systems in New Zealand prohibit the use of hormones. In the US, hormones like rbST (recombinant bovine somatotropin) are used to stimulate growth and milk production. Research shows that higher producing cows are more likely to have lower concentrations of IgG in their colostrum at calving.
The sale of milk from cows treated with recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) is also approved in the US. Recent studies find that milk quality may actually be degraded somewhat as a result of the increased incidence of mastitis associated with the use of rBGH/rbST.
In several countries, milk quality is measured by somatic cell counts (SCC). SCC are significantly elevated in the milk of rBGH/rbST-treated cows. Milk with a high SCC tends to spoil faster than milk with lower SCC. Also, a decline in nutritional quality and protein content has been observed in the early stages of supplementation with rBGH/rbST. Dairy products coming from the US are also linked to allergies, constipation, obesity, heart disease, cancer, and other diseases.
In New Zealand, farmers may be fined up to $100,000 for infractions against regulations, including the presence of hormones, antibiotics or pesticides. According to the US Grade A Pasteurized Milk Ordinance, “No penalty is imposedon the producer or distributor upon the first violation of any of the sanitation requirements.” Additional infractions are considered misdemeanors and no fines are imposed