On 1 January 2020, the transition period to approximate the Ukrainian requirements to raw milk with the European ones through the gradual increase of threshold values of raw milk parameters, i.e. total bacterial count (TBC) and somatic cell count (SCC), began.
To comply with these criteria dairy market operators have to comply with special hygienic requirements for raw milk production and placing on the market approved by Order No 118 of the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine “On Approving the Requirements to Safety and Quality of Milk and Dairy Products” dated 12 March 2019 (hereinafter Order No 118/2019).
In addition, Order No 118/2019 defines the minimum frequency of TBC and SCC control using the samples taken on a farm or milk collection points.
Today, on 12 January, Order No 2760 of the Ministry for Development of Economy, Trade and Agriculture of Ukraine “On Amending Order No 118 of the Ministry of Agrarian Policy and Food of Ukraine dated 12 March 2019” has become valid. Thus, another increase in threshold values for raw milk parameters is postponed for two years.
This postponement is important not only for the dairy sector but also for the development of the relevant policy. With this purpose, the MDETA Working Group to improve the regulation and state control of raw milk production for placement on the market (hereinafter – Working Group) is elaborating a strategic document “Action Plan for Transition Period to Ensure Effective Implementation of the Requirements to Raw Milk and Dairy Product Quality and Safety”.
Thus, the important tasks within the Working Group, include:
Elaboration of the draft questionnaire for inspection of milk farms;
Revision of the requirements to small-scale milk production, milk collection points, and milk placement on the market;
Elaboration of regulations to create a reliable and transparent system of control over raw milk placement on the market which would correspond to the new approaches set in Article 40 of the Law of Ukraine No 2042-VIII “On State Control over Observance of the Legislation on Foodstuffs, Animal Feedstuffs, By-products of Animal Origin, Animal Health and Welfare” dated 18 May 2017 and Order No 118/2019.
Fulfillment of these tasks will help to establish a proper level of compliance with the new requirements by all the dairy market operators, which will ensure equal competition and consumer rights protection.