The Consumer Education Project of Milk SA

What is flavoured milk?

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Flavoured milk is pasteurised and homogenised low-fat or fat-free dairy milk that is coloured, sweetened and flavoured. It provides the same nine essential nutrients as white or unflavoured milk. In contrast to sugar-sweetened soft drinks, flavoured milk does not add ‘empty kilojoules’ to the diet and is therefore a better choice than a high-sugar, low-nutrient drink.

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Flavoured milk is a pasteurised and homogenised low-fat or fat-free dairy milk product that is coloured, sweetened and flavoured. It provides the same nine essential nutrients as white or unflavoured milk. Most flavoured milks undergo either an ultra-heat treatment or a sterilisation process, which removes all micro-organisms. Flavoured milk has a long shelf life and generally does not have to be refrigerated before it is opened.

Flavoured milk is a nutrient-dense beverage, which means that it contains many important nutrients relative to its energy content. Although flavoured milk contains both natural milk sugar (lactose) and additional table sugar (sucrose), these sugars contribute only about 3% energy per 100 ml. Sugar-sweetened soft drinks provide more than 20% energy per 100 ml. So, although flavoured milk is sweetened, it also provides important nutrients such as protein, calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphate and zinc, and vitamins A, B12 and B2. Flavoured milk does not add empty kilojoules to the diet and is therefore a wiser option than a high-sugar, low-nutrient beverage.

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