Once a cow has given birth, she produces approximately 30 litres of colostrum over the following 72 hours. The first five litres of the colostrum is given to the calf. This colostrum is not only vital to the calf’s health but also contains high levels of blood, pus and other matter which some consider unfit for human consumption. These first five litres for the calf however, ensure that adequate nutrition is provided and that ongoing herd quality and subsequent production of colostrum and milk for the future is maintained.
The remaining colostrum is then collected, skimmed and flash-pasteurised at 72o for 15 seconds. This is long enough to destroy any microbes, but not long enough to damage the
delicate bioactive elements.The product is then low-heat dried maintaining the bioactivity and leaving a white powder.
This low-heat drying process has a loss of bioactivity of less than 3 percent. From this stage it is manufactured into capsules tablets and powdered drinks.
In New Zealand the cows all calve at the same time of the year, so the colostrum is collected fresh and processed immediately. In most other countries calving occurs all year round and the colostrum must be frozen prior to processing. Colostrum processed from fresh is believed to be far more effective.
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