Environmental Management and Sustainability

UC-Davis Vet Med Research Microbial diversity in dairy manure environment under liquid-solid separation systems. Shetty BD, Pandey PK, Mai K. Environ Technol. 2024 Feb 3:1-17.

  • In dairy manure, a wide array of microorganisms, including many pathogens, survive and grow under suitable conditions. This microbial community offers a tremendous opportunity for studying animal health, the transport of microbes into the soil, air, and water, and consequential impacts on public health.
  • The aim of this study was to assess the impacts of manure management practices on the microbial community of manure. The key novelty of this work is to identify the impacts of various stages of manure management on microbes living in dairy manure.
  • In general, the majority of dairy farms in California use a flush system to manage dairy manure, which involves liquid-solid separations. To separate liquid and solid in manure, Multi-stage Alternate Dairy Effluent Management Systems (ADEMS) that use mechanical separation systems (MSS) or weeping wall separation systems (WWSS) are used.
  • Thus, this study was conducted to understand how these manure management systems affect the microbial community.
  • Researchers studied the microbial communities in the WWSS and MSS separation systems, as well as in the four stages of the ADEMS.
  • The results showed that microbial communities among WWSS and MSS were significantly different. These findings have significant practical implications for the design and implementation of manure management practices in dairy farms.

Differences in Bacterial Communities and Pathogen Indicators of Raw and Lagoon-Stabilized Farm Dairy Effluents. Illarze G, Del Pino A, Irisarri P. Microorganisms. 2024;12(2):305.

  • One practice for handling farm dairy effluent (DE) comprises recycling them to the soil with the challenge of balancing the tradeoff associated with environmental pollution through nutrient and microorganism loading.
  • This study investigated seasonal bacterial community composition, diversity, abundance, and pathogenic indicators in untreated (Raw) and lagoon-stabilized (Lagoon) DE. The correlation between bacterial profiles and DE physicochemical characteristics was also analyzed.
  • Lagoon storage effectively reduced total solids (64%), suspended solids (77%), organic carbon (40%), and total nitrogen (82%), along with total coliforms, Escherichia coli, and enterococci. However, this efficiency was compromised in winter.
  • Lagoon and Raw sample bacterial communities presented different compositions, with several environmental variables correlating to microbial community differences. Lagoon-treated DE exhibited the most diverse bacterial community, dominated by Firmicutes (40%), Proteobacteria (30%), and Bacteroidota (7.6%), whereas raw DE was mainly composed of Firmicutes (76%). Regardless of the season, dominant genera included Trichococcus, RomboutsiaCorynebacterium, and Paeniclostridium.
  • Overall, the study emphasizes the importance of lagoon treatment for DE stabilization, showcasing its role in altering bacterial community composition and mitigating environmental risks associated with pathogens and nutrients, particularly in summer.

Bioelectrochemically-assisted ammonia recovery from dairy manure. Burns M, Tang H, Larson RA, Qin M. Water Res. 2024 Mar 15;252:121243.

  • The sustainability of direct land application of dairy manure is challenged by significant nutrient losses. Bioelectrochemical systems for ammonia recovery offer a manure management strategy that can recover both ammoniacal and organic nitrogen as a stable ammonia fertilizer.
  • In this research, a microbial fuel cell (MFC) was used to treat two types of dairy manure under a variety of imposed anode compartment conditions.
  • The system achieved a maximum coulombic efficiency of 20 ± 18 % and exhibited both COD and total nitrogen removals of approximately 60 %. Furthermore, the MFC showed a maximum organic nitrogen removal of 73.8 ± 12.1 %, and no differences in organic nitrogen (orgN) removal were detected among different conditions tested.
  • Decreasing concentrations of anolyte ammonia nitrogen coupled with the observed orgN removal from the anolyte indicate that the MFC is effective at recovering orgN in dairy manure as ammoniacal nitrogen in the catholyte. Additionally, ion competition between NH4+and other relevant cations (Na+, K+, and Mg2+) for transport across the CEM was investigated, with only K+ showing minor competitive effects.
  • Based on the results of this research, the researchers propose three key processes and two sub-processes that contribute to the successful operation of the MFC for nitrogen recovery from dairy manure.
  • In conclusion, bioelectrochemical systems for nitrogen recovery from dairy manure offer a novel, robust technology for producing a valuable ammonia nitrogen fertilizer, a thus far untapped resource in dairy manure streams.

Cheese whey and dairy manure anaerobic co-digestion at psychrophilic conditions: Technical and environmental evaluation. Casallas-Ojeda M, Cabeza I, Sanchez N, Caicedo-Concha DM, Astals S. Environ Res. 2024 Feb 24:118525.

  • Cheese whey (CW) and dairy manure (DM) are the main residues from the dairy industry, both of which can lead to significant negative environmental impacts if not properly managed. However, their combined anaerobic digestion represents an opportunity to obtain bioenergy and a stabilized material as a soil improver on the farm.
  • Biochemical potential of methane (BMP) assays were carried out at psychrophilic (i.e. cold) conditions (20 °C) to analyze the influence on biomethane production of different CW:DM mixtures (% w/w) at different of inoculum-to-substrate ratios (ISR).
  • Based on the BMP results, a life cycle assessment (LCA) of the cheese manufacturing process was carried out considering two scenarios (i) considering the current process, where propane gas and electricity are used for cheese production (ii) the incorporation of the biogas generated in the cheese production process in the company.
  • BMP results showed that the best mixture between CW and DM was 65:35 (weight basis) at an organic load of 0.6 gVS/L (ISR of X). The LCA showed that CW and DM anaerobic digestion allowed to reduce the cheese manufacturing carbon footprint from through the substitution of propane by the biogas produced, changing from 5.5 to 3.1 kg CO2-eq/kg cheese produced.
  • These findings indicate that according to the monthly production (633.6 kg) it would stop emitting about 1519 kg CO2-eq, (i.e. a saving in terms of emissions of approximately 43.6% of the total currently generated).

Impact of biochar and organic fertilizers on sweet potato yield, quality, ascorbic acid, β-carotene, sugars, and phenols contents. Antonious GF. Int J Environ Health Res. 2024 Feb 23:1-12.

  • The demand for food is increasing and the use of soil organic amendments in agricultural management practices has been instructed to increase crop yield and reduce dependence on synthetic inorganic fertilizers at low cost to limited resource farmers. However, the effect of organic amendments on the quality and nutritional composition of edible plants has received little attention.
  • Locally available organic amendments (sewage sludge SS, chicken manure CM, cow manure Cow, vermicompost Vermi, and biochar Bio) were chosen to test their impact on field-grown sweet potato, Ipomoea batatas yield, root quality, and root nutritional composition.
  • The results indicated that utilizing Cow manure in growing sweet potatoes significantly promoted root yield and root nutritional composition. Cow treatment produced the greatest number of roots compared to Bio, CM, SS, and the control treatments.
  • The results also revealed that the concentrations of vitamin C (260. 3 µg g-1), β-carotene (45.4 µg g-1), soluble sugars (16.7 mg g-1), and total phenols (196.3 3 µg g-1fresh roots) were greater in the roots of plants grown in Cow compared to the roots of the control treatment.
  • The results indicated the low impact of biochar whereas Cow is recommended for enhancing sweet potato yield and nutritional composition.

Crop byproducts supplemented in livestock feeds reduced greenhouse gas emissions. Wang K, Du C, Zhao X, et al. J Environ Manage. 2024 Mar 2;355:120469.

  • Crop byproducts can be supplemented in livestock feeds to improve the utilization of resources and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
  • Researchers explored the mitigation potential of GHG emissions by supplementing crop byproducts in feeds based on a typical intensive dairy farm in China.
  • Results showed that GHG emissions associated with production of forage were significantly decreased by 25.60 % when no GHG emissions were allocated to crop byproducts, and enteric methane emission was significantly decreased by 13.46 % on the basis of CO2eq, g/kg fat and protein corrected milk.
  • The supplementation did not affect lactation performance, rumen microbiota and microbial enzymes at the gene level. Metabolomics analysis revealed changes in amino acid catabolism of rumen fluid, which were probably responsible for more propionate production.
  • In conclusion, supplementing crop byproducts in feeds can be a potential strategy to reduce GHG emissions of livestock.

A Review of Potential Feed Additives Intended for Carbon Footprint Reduction through Methane Abatement in Dairy Cattle. Hodge I, Quille P, O’Connell S. Animals (Basel). 2024 Feb 8;14(4):568.

  • Introducing feed additives to mitigate enteric methane from ruminants demonstrates potential for reduced agricultural greenhouse gas emissions and opportunity for improved ruminant productivity.
  • This review investigates garlic oil (GO), nitrate, Ascophyllum nodosum (AN), Asparagopsis (ASP)Lactobacillus plantarum(LAB), chitosan (CHI), essential oils (EOs) and 3-nitrooxypropanol (3-NOP) feed additives for methane (CH4) mitigation in large ruminants that have been investigated in in vitro or in vivo trials with the aim of improved rumen fermentation characteristics.
  • Dose-dependent analysis was carried out on selected feed additives using a meta-analysis approach to determine effectiveness in live subjects or potential efficacy in live animal trials with particular attention given to enteric gas, volatile fatty acid concentrations, and rumen microbial counts.
  • All meta-analysis involving additives GO, nitrates, LAB, CHI, EOs, and 3-NOP revealed a reduction in methane production, while individual studies for AN and ASP displayed ruminal bacterial community improvement and a reduction in enteric CH4.
  • Rumen protozoal depression was observed with GO and AN supplementation as well as an increase in propionate production with GO, LAB, ASP, CHI, and 3-NOP rumen fluid inoculation.
  • GO, AN, ASP, and LAB demonstrated mechanisms in vitro as feed additives to improve rumen function and act as enteric methane mitigators. Enzyme inhibitor 3-NOP displays the greatest in vivo CH4mitigating capabilities compared to essential oil commercial products.
  • Furthermore, this meta-analysis study revealed that in vitro studies in general displayed a greater level of methane mitigation with these compounds than was seen in vivo, emphasizing the importance of in vivo trials for final verification of use. While in vitro gas production systems predict in vivo methane production and fermentation trends with reasonable accuracy, it is necessary to confirm feed additive rumen influence in vivo before practical application.

Long-term effects of 3-nitrooxypropanol on methane emission and milk production characteristics in Holstein Friesian dairy cows. van Gastelen S, Burgers EEA, Dijkstra J, Bannink A, et al. J Dairy Sci. 2024 Feb 21:S0022-0302(24)00500-9.

  • Methane emission accounts for 44% of the total greenhouse gas (GHG) emission from dairy production. Due to its considerable contribution, enteric CH4production has been targeted to reduce GHG emission from the dairy sector. Several enteric CH4 mitigation strategies have been proposed, including changes in animal breeding and management, and dietary strategies.
  • The objective of this study was to determine the long-term effect of 3-nitrooxypropanol (3-NOP) on CH4emission and milk production characteristics from dairy cows receiving 3-NOP in their diet for a full year, covering all lactation stages of the dairy cows.
  • Sixty-four late-lactation Holstein Friesian cows (34% primiparous) were blocked in pairs, based on expected calving date, parity, and daily milk yield.
  • The experiment started with an adaptation period of 1 week followed by a covariate period of 3 weeks in which all cows received the same basal diet and baseline measurements were performed. Directly after, cows within a block were randomly allocated to 1 of 2 dietary treatments: a diet containing on average 69.8 mg 3-NOP/kg DM (total ration level, corrected for intake of non-supplemented GreenFeed bait) and a diet containing a placebo.
  • Supplementation of 3-NOP did not affect total dry matter intake (DMI), body weight or body condition score, but resulted in a 6.5% increase in the yields of energy-corrected milk and fat- and protein-corrected milk (FPCM). Furthermore, milk fat and protein as well as feed efficiency were increased upon 3-NOP supplementation.
  • Overall, a reduction of 21%, 20%, and 27% was achieved for CH4production (g/d), yield (g/kg DMI), and intensity (g/kg FPCM), respectively, upon 3-NOP supplementation. The CH4 mitigation potential of 3-NOP was affected by the lactation stage dependent diet to which 3-NOP was supplemented.
  • On average, a 16%, 20%, 16%, and 26% reduction in CH4yield (g/kg DMI) was achieved upon 3-NOP supplementation for the dry period, and early, mid, and late lactation diet, respectively. The CH4 mitigation potential of 3-NOP was affected by the length of 3-NOP supplementation within a lactation stage dependent diet and by variation in diet composition within a lactation stage dependent diet as a result of changes in grass and corn silage silos.
  • These results suggest that diet composition has a large effect on the efficacy of 3-NOP.
  • In conclusion, 3-NOP reduced CH4emission from cows receiving 3-NOP for a year, with a positive impact on production characteristics. The CH4 mitigation potential of 3-NOP was influenced by diet type, diet composition, and nutrition value, and the efficacy of 3-NOP appeared to decline over time but not continuously. Associated with changes in diet composition, increased efficacy of 3-NOP was observed at the start of the trial, at the start of a new lactation, and, importantly, at the end of the trial.

Unacceptable use of substandard metrics in policy decisions which mandate large reductions in animal-source foods. Stanton AV. NPJ Sci Food. 2024 Feb 5;8(1):10.

  • Many recent very influential reports, including those from the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) Risk Factor Collaborators, the EAT-Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, Health, and the Lancet Countdown on Health and Climate Change, have recommended dramatic reductions or total exclusion of animal-source foods, particularly ruminant products (red meat and dairy), from the human diet. They strongly suggest that these dietary shifts will not only benefit planetary health but also human health.
  • However, as detailed in this perspective, there are grounds for considerable concern in regard to the quality and transparency of the input data, the validity of the assumptions, and the appropriateness of the statistical modelling, used in the calculation of the global health estimates, which underpin the claimed human health benefits.
  • The lessor bioavailability of protein and key micronutrients from plant-source foods versus animal-source foods was not adequately recognized nor addressed in any of these reports. Furthermore, assessments of bias and certainty were either limited or absent.
  • Despite many of these errors and limitations being publicly acknowledged by the GBD and the EAT-Lancet authors, no corrections have been applied to the published papers. As a consequence, these reports continue to erroneously influence food policy decisions and international dietary guidelines, such as the World Wildlife Fund’s Livewell Diet, and the Nordic Nutrition Recommendations 2023.

Animal Health and Food Safety

Investigation of Climate Effects on the Physiological Parameters of Dairy Livestock (Cow vs. Buffalo). Piscopo N, Matera R, Cotticelli A, Trapanese L, Tamburis O, Cimmino R, Salzano A. Sensors (Basel). 2024 Feb 10;24(4):1164.

  • Nowadays climate change is affecting the planet’s biodiversity, and livestock practices must adapt themselves to improve production without affecting animal welfare.
  • This work investigates the influence that some climatic parameters such as Environment Temperature, Relative Humidity, Thermal excursion and Temperature-Humidity Index (THI), can have on milk quantity and quality in two different dairy species (buffaloes and cows) raised on the same farm.
  • The climatic parameters were recorded daily through a meteorological station located inside the farm. Milk quantity (converted into ECM) and quality (Fat Percentage-FP; Protein Percentage-PP; Somatic Cell Count-SCC) were measured.
  • The results indicate a greater sensitivity of cows than buffalos to heat stress and a strong negative correlation of the ECM with meteorological data. The results of this study may stimulate the use of integrated technologies (sensors, software) in the dairy sector, since the IoT (sensors, software) helps to enhance animal well-being and to optimize process costs, with a precision livestock farming approach.

Relationships Between Gastrointestinal Permeability, Heat Stress, And Milk Production in Lactating Dairy Cows. Ellett MD, Rhoads RP, Daniels KM, et al. J Dairy Sci. 2024 Feb 28:S0022-0302(24)00516-2.

  • Heat stress (HS) is a global issue that decreases farm profits and compromises animal welfare.
  • To distinguish between the direct and indirect effects of HS, 16 multiparous Holstein cows approximately 100 days in milk were assigned to one of 2 treatments: pair fed to match heat stressed cow intake, housed in thermoneutral conditions (PFTN, n = 8) or cyclical heat stress (n = 8).
  • All cows were subjected to 2 experimental periods. Period 1 consisted of a 4-day thermoneutral period with ad libitum intake. During Period 2, the heat stressed cows were housed in cyclical heat stress conditions with a temperature humidity index ranging from 76 to 80 and the thermoneutral cows were exposed to a constant temperature humidity index of 64 for 4 days.
  • DMI of the PFTN cow was intake matched to the HS cows. Milk yield, milk composition, rectal temperature, and respiration rate were recorded twice daily, blood was collected daily via a jugular catheter, and cows were fed twice daily.
  • Heat stress decreased voluntary intake by 35% and increased rectal temperature and respiration rate (38.4 vs 39.4°C and 40 vs 71 respirations/min, respectively). Heat stress reduced dry matter intake (DMI) by 35% which accounted for 66% of the decrease in milk yield. The yield, and not concentration, of milk protein, fat, and other solids were lower in the heat stresses cows on day 4 of Period 2.
  • Milk urea nitrogen (MUN) was higher and plasma urea nitrogen (PUN) tended to be higher on day 3 and day 4 of heat stress. Glucose was 7% lower in the heat stressed cows and insulin was 71% higher than the PFTN cows on day 4 of Period 2.
  • No difference in lipopolysaccharide binding protein (LBP) was observed. Heat stressed cows produced 7 L/day more urine than PFTN cows. No differences were detected in the urine concentration.
  • In conclusion, heat stress was responsible for 34% of the reduction of milk yield. The elevated MUN and the tendency for elevated PUN indicate a whole-body shift in nitrogen metabolism.
  • These results indicate that, under conditions of this experiment, activation of the immune system by gut derived lipopolysaccharide was not responsible for the decreased milk yield observed during heat stress.

Archetypal clustering reveals physiological mechanisms linking milk yield and fertility in dairy cattle. Ooi E, Xiang R, Chamberlain AJ, Goddard ME. J Dairy Sci. 2024 Feb 16:S0022-0302(24)00482-X.

  • Fertility in dairy cattle has declined as an unintended consequence of single trait selection for high milk yield. The unfavorable genetic correlation between milk yield and fertility is now well-documented, however, the underlying physiological mechanisms are still uncertain.
  • To understand the relationship between these traits, researchers developed a method that clusters variants with similar patterns of effects and, after the integration of gene expression data, identifies the genes through which they are likely to act.
  • Biological processes that are enriched in the genes of each cluster were then identified. The researchers identified several clusters with unique patterns of effects.
    • One of the clusters included variants associated with increased milk yield and decreased fertility, where the ‘archetypal’ variant (i.e., the one with the largest effect) was associated with the gene GC, while others were associated with TRIM32, LRRK2, and U6. These genes have been linked to transcription and alternative splicing, suggesting that these processes are likely contributors to the unfavorable relationship between the 2 traits.
    • Another cluster, with archetypal variant near DGAT1 and including variants associated with CDH2, BTRC, SFRP2, ZFHX3, and SLITRK5, appeared to affect milk yield but have little effect on fertility. These genes have been linked to insulin, adipose tissue, and energy metabolism.
    • A third cluster with archetypal variant near ZNF613 and including variants associated with ROBO1, EFNA5, PALLD, GPC6, and PTPRT were associated with fertility but not milk yield. These genes have been linked to GnRH neuronal migration, embryonic development, and/or ovarian function.
  • The use of archetypal clustering to group variants with similar patterns of effects may assist in identifying the biological processes underlying correlated traits. The method is hypothesis-generating and requires experimental confirmation. However, this new research has uncovered several novel mechanisms potentially affecting milk production and fertility such as GnRH neuronal migration.
  • The researchers anticipate that this new method will be a starting point for experimental research into novel pathways which have been previously unexplored within the context of dairy production.

Conditioner application improves bedding quality and bacterial composition with potential beneficial impacts for dairy cow’s health. Duniere L, Frayssinet B, Achard C, Chevaux E, Plateau J. Microbiol Spectr. 2024 Feb 20:e0426323.

  • Recycled manure solids (RMS) are used as bedding material in cow housing but can be at risk for pathogens development. Cows spend several hours per day lying down, contributing to the transfer of potential mastitis pathogens from the bedding to the udder.
  • The effect of a bacterial conditioner (Manure Pro; MP) application was studied on RMS-bedding and milk qualities and on animal health.
  • MP product was applied on bedding once a week for 3 months. Bedding and teat skin samples were collected from Control and MP groups at day 1, day 51, and day 90 and analyzed through 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing.
  • MP application modified bacterial profiles and diversity. Control bedding was significantly associated with potential mastitis pathogens, while no taxa of potential health risk were significantly detected in MP beddings. Significant associations with potential mastitis pathogens were mainly observed in Control teat skin samples.
  • Finally, significantly better hygiene and lower Somatic Cell Counts in milk were observed for cows from MP group, while no group impact was observed on milk quality and microbiota. No dissemination of MP strains was observed from bedding to teats or milk.
  • Overall, the use of the Manure Pro conditioner improved recycled manure solids-bedding quality and this higher sanitary condition had further impacts on dairy cows’ health with less potential mastitis pathogens significantly associated with bedding and teat skin samples. The animals also presented an improved inflammation status, while milk quality was not modified.

Effects of flooring types on teat end bacteria counts, milk quality, hygiene and behaviour of dairy cows housed in tie-stall closed barn. Aydın R, Diler A, Ozdemir VF, Yanar M, Koçyiğit R. Vet Ital. 2023 Jul 31;59(2).

  • Mastitis is  the  costliest  disease  in  milk  production  worldwide,  resulting  in  substantial  economic  loss-es and impairing the health and welfare of affected cows. Since sources of environmental pathogens include soil, feces, and bedding, all of which are found within dairy cattle housing systems, it is much more difficult  to  control  the  incidence  of  environmental
  • This study aimed to investigate environmental mastitis causing bacteria counts in the teat end, somatic cell counts (SCC) of milk samples, cleanliness scores and behavior of cows kept on concrete and rubber mat floorings.
  • For this purpose, 19 Holstein-Friesian dairy cows were allocated into concrete and rubber mat groups. Swab samples were taken from the teat ends to determine the bacterial counts causing environmental mastitis. Milk samples were collected from a composite of all four quarters to determine the SCC.
  • Independent samples t-test was utilized in the statistical analysis of the obtained data. Coliform (P<0.05), Escherichia coli, and Klebsiella spp. (P<0.01) counts of the swab samples taken from the cows housed on concrete flooring were significantly higher than rubber mat group.
  • However, no statistically significant differences were found between groups in terms of total bacteria, Streptococcus spp., and Enterobacteriaceae counts. The SCC on samples taken from cows kept on concrete surface were significantly higher than that of animals housed on rubber mat. Furthermore, cows in the rubber mat group were determined to be significantly cleaner than those in concrete group.
  • It was also determined that the cows housed on rubber mat spent significantly longer time for lying behavior, which is a significant indicator of animal comfort. The time spent for standing without eating was considerably higher in concrete group. In addition, the times spent for eating was significantly lower in the concrete group.
  • It was concluded that using rubber mat instead of concrete for flooring in tie-stall barns decreases the contamination of environmental mastitis pathogens, increases milk quality and cow cleanliness score as well as animal comfort and welfare.

Ozone use in the treatment of subclinical mastitis in dairy cows. Fuentes EA, Achy JA, Escodro PB, et  al. J Dairy Res. 2023 Nov;90(4):382-386.

  • This research communication paper addresses the hypothesis that the use of therapeutic alternatives for mastitis, such as intramammary ozone, can cure the disease with lower costs and without harmful residues for human consumption and without formation of microbial resistance like the ones caused by indiscriminate use of antibiotics in dairy farms.
  • The study was performed in 36 mammary quarters from 12 dairy cows with subclinical mastitis grade three.
  • The experimental units were randomly assigned into four groups and each group received a treatment. Treatments comprised (a) 20 μg/ml ozone gas; (b) 40 μg/ml ozone gas; (c) negative control treatment of 12.5 μg/ml ozonated saline and (d) positive control treatment of 100 mg of cephalexin + 100 mg of neomycin + 10 mg of prednisolone, all by intramammary injection.
  • In all quarters, milk was collected before and after the application of treatments for California mastitis test and evaluation of milk composition, somatic cell count, and bacterial cultures.
  • The results indicated that the use of intramammary ozone did have a therapeutic effect, and whilst this was less than that of antibiotics, ozone does confer some advantages. Treated milk had a good composition, the treatment cost was low, milk withdrawal may not be necessary and there is no risk of antibiotic resistance.

Biodiversity and antibiotic resistance profile provide new evidence for a different origin of enterococci in bovine raw milk and feces. Morandi S, Silvetti T, Brasca M, et al. Food Microbiol. 2024 Jun;120:104492.

  • Enterococci are widely distributed in dairy sector. They are commensals of the gastrointestinal tract of animals, thus, via fecal contamination, could reach raw milk and dairy products.
  • The aims of this study were: 1) to investigate the enterococcal diversity in cow feces and milk samples and 2) to evaluate the antibiotic resistance (AR) of dairy-related enterococci and their ability to transfer resistance genes.
  • faecalis (59.9%), E. faecium (18.6%) and E. lactis (12.4%) were prevalent in milk, while E. faecium (84.2%) and E. hirae (15.0%) were dominant in bovine feces.
  • Further analysis highlighted a high number of Enterococcus biotypes (45 from milk and 37 from feces) and none of the milk strains exhibited genetic profiles similar to those of feces biotypes.
  • A high percentage of enterococci isolated from milk (71%) were identified as multidrug resistant and resistance against streptomycin and tetracycline were widespread among milk strains while enterococci from feces were commonly resistant to linezolid and quinupristin/dalfopristin.
  • Only E. faecalis strains were able to transfer horizontally the tetM gene to Lb. delbrueckii subsp. lactis.
  • These results indicated that Enterococcus biotypes from milk and bovine feces belong to different community and the ability of these microorganisms to transfer AR genes is strain-dependent.

Human Health and Nutrition

 NDC Funded and CDRF Co-Authored Special Issue: Dairy Intake and Health Among Black Americans
  1. Executive summary: The role of dairy food intake for improving health among Black Americans across the life continuum. Comerford K, Lawson Y, Young M, Knight M, McKinney K, Mpasi P, Mitchell E. J Natl Med Assoc. 2024 Feb.
  2. A review of dairy food intake for improving health for black women in the US during pregnancy, fetal development, and lactation. Lawson Y, Comerford K, Mitchell EP. J Natl Med Assoc. 2024 Feb.
  3. A review of dairy food intake for improving health among black infants, toddlers, and young children in the US. Lawson Y, Mpasi P, Young M, Comerford K, Mitchell E. J Natl Med Assoc. 2024 Feb.
  4. A review of dairy food intake for improving health among black children and adolescents in the US. Lawson Y, Mpasi P, Young M, Comerford K, Mitchell E. J Natl Med Assoc. 2024 Feb.
  5. A review of dairy food intake for improving health among black adults in the US. Mitchell E, Comerford K, Knight M, McKinney K, Lawson Y. J Natl Med Assoc. 2024 Feb.
  6. A review of dairy food intake for improving health among black geriatrics in the US. Mitchell E, Comerford K, Knight M, McKinney K, Lawson Y. J Natl Med Assoc. 2024 Feb.
  7. The role of dairy food intake for improving health among black Americans across the life continuum: A summary of the evidence. Comerford K, Lawson Y, Young M, Knight M, McKinney K, Mpasi P, Mitchell E. J Natl Med Assoc. 2024 Feb.
  • Given the complex relationships that many Black Americans have with dairy foods, due to issues with lactose intolerance, and/or negative perceptions about the health effects of dairy foods, there is still a need to examine the role that dairy foods play in the health and well-being of Black Americans of all ages and life stages.
  • Although nutrition is only one of many factors that influence human health and well-being across the life continuum, a growing body of research continues to demonstrate that consuming a healthy dietary pattern is one of the most dominant factors associated with increased longevity, improved mental health, improved immunity, and decreased risk for obesity and chronic disease.
  • Unfortunately, large percentages of Black Americans tend to consume inadequate amounts of several essential nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin D, calcium, and magnesium; and simultaneously consume excessive amounts of fast foods and sugar-sweetened beverages to a greater degree than other racial/ethnic groups. Therefore, strategies that can help improve dietary patterns for Black Americans could make up a major public health opportunity for reducing nutrition-related diseases and health disparities across the life course.
  • A key intervention strategy to improve diet quality among Black Americans is to focus on increasing the intake of nutrient-rich dairy foods, which are significantly underconsumed by most Black Americans. Compared to other food group, dairy foods are some of the most accessible and affordable sources of essential nutrients like vitamin A, D, and B12, calcium, magnesium, potassium, selenium, and zinc in the food supply, as well as being some of the primary sources of several health-promoting bioactive compounds, including polar lipids, bioactive proteins and peptides, oligosaccharides, and live and active cultures in fermented products.
  • Overall, the findings and conclusions from this body of research continue to indicate that higher dairy intake is associated with reduced risk for many of the most commonly occurring deficiencies and diseases impacting each life stage, and that Black Americans would receive significantly greater health benefits by increasing their daily dairy intake levels to meet the national recommendations than they would from continuing to fall short of these recommendations.
  • However, these recommendations must be considered with appropriate context and nuance as the intake of different dairy products can have different impacts on health outcomes. For instance, vitamin D fortified dairy products and fermented dairy products like yogurt – which are low in lactose and rich in live and active cultures – tend to show the greatest benefits for improved health.

The Relationship Between Fermented Dairy Consumption with Cognitive Function Among Older US Adults: Data from the NHANES 2011-2014. Han Y, Yang M, Tian M, Yang Y, Liu W, Liu Y. J Alzheimers Dis. 2024;97(4):1877-1887.

  • The aging global population has led to an increased burden of cognitive impairment in older adults.
  • This study examined the relationship between fermented dairy intake and cognitive function in this population.
  • Yogurt, cheese, and fermented dairy consumption were assessed through two 24-hour dietary recall interviews, categorized into low, medium, and high intake groups. Multivariate linear regression was employed to examine the relationship between fermented dairy intake and cognitive tests, including the Alzheimer’s Disease Word Learning Immediate Recall Test (CERAD-IRT), CERAD Delayed Recall Test (CERAD-DRT), Animal Fluency Test (AFT), Digit Symbol Substitution Test (DSST), and global cognitive z-scores, adjusting for potential confounding factors.
  • The study comprised 2,462 participants (average age 69.34±6.75 years, 52.07% female). Among yogurt consumers, global cognition and AFT z-scores are notably higher than non-consumers. Conversely, individuals who consume cheese display significantly lower CERAD-DRT z-scores. Compared to participants who did not consume fermented dairy, consumers of fermented dairy show significantly higher AFT and DSST z-scores and lower CERAD-DRT z-scores. Moreover, when categorizing individuals based on their intake of fermented dairy, those with low and medium consumption show significantly higher AFT and DSST z-scores, as well as significantly lower CERAD-DRT z-scores compared to non-consumers.
  • In conclusion, this study suggests that moderate consumption of fermented dairy products is associated with better executive function and verbal fluency in the elderly.

The effect of bovine dairy products and their components on the incidence and natural history of infection: a systematic literature review. Mitchell M, Suh M, Hooda N, Bylsma LC, Cohen SS. Nutr J. 2024 Feb 27;23(1):26.

  • Dairy products and their components may impact immune function, although the current evidence base has some research gaps.
  • As part of a larger systematic literature review of dairy products/components (including probiotics, dairy proteins, and dairy fats) and immune function, researchers identified the available epidemiologic research on the impact of dairy products/components on incidence and natural history of infectious diseases.
  • PubMed and Embase databases were systematically searched through May 2022 to identify eligible studies using pre-defined Population, Intervention, Comparator, Outcomes, and Study design criteria. Herein, the researchers focused on describing the impacts of dairy product/component on infectious disease outcomes, including the effect on leukocyte and cytokine response in humans.
  • Among 9,832 studies identified from the larger literature search, 133 relevant publications from 128 studies reported on dairy product/component and infectious disease outcomes. Few studies are available on the impact of non-fermented milk and traditional yogurt on infectious disease.
  • Evidence was identified to suggest milk and yogurt drinks fermented with Lactobacillus strains reduce the risk and burden of common infectious diseases (CIDs), although the findings are mixed and difficult to reconcile due to heterogenous study populations, bacterial strains, and study methods.
  • Few studies are available on the impact of dairy products/components on the natural history of infection, with the available findings indicating probiotics may both improve gastrointestinal symptoms among HIV-infected persons and help eradicate and alleviate the symptoms of Heliobacter (H.) pylori.
  • The available evidence also suggests lactoferrin may reduce the virological burden of COVID-19 and hepatitis C virus. No consistent changes in leukocytes or cytokine production were observed for any type of dairy product or their components, but probiotics appeared to enhance natural killer cell levels/activity and the phagocytic process.
  • In conclusion,dairy products, particularly those with added probiotics, may represent an easily accessible nutritional intervention to prevent and improve the course of infectious diseases.

Consumption of dairy products and odds of ulcerative colitis: An Iranian case-control study. Amini MR, Khademi Z, Salavatizadeh M, Kalantar Z, Ebrahimi-Daryani N, Esmaillzadeh A, Hekmatdoost A. Food Sci Nutr. 2023 Nov 20;12(2):1330-1339.

  • The association between dairy product consumption and the risk of ulcerative colitis (UC) is not well elucidated.
  • This case-control study examined the association between Iranian adults’ dairy consumption and UC risk.
  • Researchers used a valid food frequency questionnaire to analyze dietary intakes in 340 patients with pathologically confirmed cases of UC and 782 controls as part of a case-control research.
  • Pasteurized milk, cheese, and yogurt dietary intakes were calculated along with dairy products. Other variables were acquired using questionnaires. Study participants’ mean (± SD) age and body mass index were 41.5 ± 14.1 years and 27.4 ± 4.77 kg/m2, respectively.
  • After adjusting for potential variables, individuals who consumed more total dairy products were less likely to get UC than those who consumed less (odds ratio [OR]: 0.44)
  • The researchers found a significant reverse association between milk intake (OR: 0.13) and yogurt intake (OR: 0.52) and UC, after controlling for potential confounders.
  • Also, no significant association was found between cheese and UC risk (OR: 1.38).
  • Overall, higher consumption of total dairy products may reduce UC risk. To be specific, milk and yogurt are inversely associated with this disorder. However, no link was found between cheese intake and UC.

Association between dairy-rich dietary pattern and metabolic dysfunction-associated steatotic liver disease: Findings from the Korean Genome and Epidemiology Study. Lee JH, Lee HS, Kwon YJ, et al. Dig Liver Dis. 2024 Feb 8:S1590-8658(24)00247-0.

  • Dietary components and the development of metabolic dysfunction-associated liver disease (MASLD) are closely linked, but large-scale studies on dietary patterns and MASLD are scarce, most previous studies having focused on individual nutrients or foods rather than overall dietary patterns.
  • Therefore, researchers aimed to investigate the association between dietary patterns and MASLD in Koreans.
  • A total of 6,052 participants from the Korean Genome and Epidemiology Study. Dietary intake was assessed using a validated Korean semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire comprising 106 food items. Principal component analysis was used to determine the major dietary patterns.
  • Four major dietary patterns, namely carnivore, plant-based, dairy-rich, and starch-rich diet patterns, were identified. The carnivore, plant-based, and starch-rich diet patterns showed no significant association with incident MASLD, while the dairy-rich diet pattern was associated with a lower risk of MASLD, also showing significantly lower cumulative incidence of MASLD in the higher adherence to dairy-rich diet pattern.
  • In conclusion,the dairy-rich diet pattern was significantly associated with a lower risk of MASLD in Koreans. Appropriate dietary guidance based on dietary patterns is crucial for preventing MASLD.

Comparison of the impact of saturated fat from full-fat yogurt or low-fat yogurt and butter on cardiometabolic factors: a randomized cross-over trial. Ranjbar YR, Nasrollahzadeh J. Eur J Nutr. 2024 Feb 17.

  • It has been shown that reducing SFA intake reduces combined cardiovascular events. As a result, most current dietary guidelines recommend limiting SFA intake.
  • Dairy fat in general is rich in SFAs, and dairy foods are often a major contributor to dietary SFA intake. Therefore, healthy eating guidelines often recommend low-fat or fat-free varieties of milk, cheese, and yogurt instead of high or full-fat ones. However, different SFA-rich foods may not have the same effects on cardiovascular risk factors.
  • Therefore, researchers compared full-fat yogurt with low-fat yogurt and butter for their effects on cardiometabolic risk factors in healthy individuals.
  • Randomized, two-period crossover trial among 30 healthy men and women (15 to receive full-fat yogurt first, and 15 to receive low-fat yogurt and butter first). Participants consumed a diet with 1.5 to 2 servings of full-fat (4%) yogurt or low-fat (< 1.5) yogurt and 10 to 15 g of butter per day for 4 weeks, with 4 weeks wash-out when they consumed 1.5 to 2 servings of low-fat milk.
  • At baseline, and the end of each 4 weeks, fasting blood samples were drawn and plasma lipids, glycemic and inflammatory markers as well as expression of some genes in the blood buffy coats fraction were determined.
  • All 30 participants completed the two periods of the study. Apolipoprotein B was higher for the low-fat yogurt and butter compared with the full-fat yogurt and the difference between two treatment periods was statistically significant.
  • Non-high-density lipoprotein increased for the low-fat yogurt and butter compared with the full-fat yogurt, with no significant difference between two periods. There were no between-period differences in other plasma lipid, insulin, and inflammatory biomarkers or leukocyte gene expression of ATP-binding cassette transporter 1 and CD36.
  • In conclusion, this study suggests that short-term intake of SFAs from full-fat yogurt compared to intake from butter and low-fat yogurt has fewer adverse effects on plasma lipid profile.

Non-Cariogenic Effect of Milk and Dairy Products on Oral Health in Children and Adolescents: A Scoping Review. Vitiello F, Bourgeois D, Orilisi G, Orsini G, Carrouel F. Children (Basel). 2024 Jan 24;11(2):149.

  • Diet plays an important role in the etiopathology of dental caries. Milk and dairy products, especially in children and adolescents, are important sources of protein, calcium and phosphorus and could have an effect on dental and oral health.
  • The aim of this scoping review was to analyze the scientific literature on the non-cariogenic effect of milk and dairy products, with a focus on their potential to prevent dental caries in children and adolescents.
  • Thirty-eight studies were included in the qualitative analysis. The included studies highlight the properties of milk and dairy products that contribute to enamel remineralization, exhibit antibacterial action, inhibit the growth of cariogenic bacteria, and promote a balanced oral microbiome.
  • With regard to the addition of probiotics and fluoride to dairy products, the mixed results of the studies analyzed did not allow a clear statement to be made about their non-cariogenic effects. However, several studies show that the addition of probiotics can reduce cariogenic bacteria, create a protective barrier against pathogens and support the host’s natural defense mechanisms.
  • Further long-term and high-quality studies are needed to understand the impact of milk and its constituents on oral health in order to promote effective caries prevention strategies in children and adolescents.

Innovation, Economics, and Dairy Alternatives

 Optimizing brand loyalty through user-centric product package design: A study of user experience in dairy industry. Wang F, Wang Y, Han Y, Cho JH. Heliyon. 2024 Feb 2;10(3):e25484.

  • In the 1990s, American marketing scientist Robert F. Lauterborn proposed the customer-centered 4C theory, including Consumer, Cost, Convenience, and Communication. The 4C theory focuses on guiding consumer demands and aiming at satisfying consumers to produce products that satisfy consumers.
  • The level of attraction to consumers and the user experience on brand contacts should be presented from the perspective of consumers. Generally, user experience drives product design to explore users’ unmet needs and discover approaches for product brand design that align with its positioning.
  • With the arrival of the experience economy era, changes in the marketing environment, and the evolution of consumer psychological needs, a good user experience will bring them freshness. Based on user experience, this paper analyzes the relationship among product brand image, brand trust, and brand loyalty, aiming to promote product values and improve brand loyalty and trust.
  • Through case analysis, consumers’ favorite brands were selected and conducted positioning analysis on brand color, image, package form, and so on. The study proposed a hypothetical model of user experience on brand loyalty and performed a questionnaire survey on 357 consumers. The relational model of the impact of user experience on consumers was verified using the SEM (Structural Equation Model) method.
  • It is shown that sensory experience, emotional experience, behavioral experience, and thinking experience have significant impacts on brand image; brand image apparently affects brand trust; and brand trust and image remarkably influence brand loyalty.
  • In conclusion,extending the concept of user experience to the fast-moving consumer goods industry will contribute to the package design of products and the theory and practice of brand loyalty. The research findings can provide effective strategies and approaches for marketers to improve product market competitiveness and enhance consumer brand stickiness.

A comprehensive review of machine learning and its application to dairy products. Freire P, Freire D, Licon CC. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2024 Feb 13:1-16.

  • Machine learning (ML) technology is a powerful tool in food science and engineering offering numerous advantages, from recognizing patterns and predicting outcomes to customizing and adjusting to individual needs. Its further development can enable researchers and industries to significantly enhance the efficiency of dairy processing while providing valuable insights into the field.
  • This paper presents an overview of the role of machine learning in the dairy industry and its potential to improve the efficiency of dairy processing.
  • Researchers performed a systematic search for articles published between January 2003 and January 2023 related to machine learning in dairy products and highlighted the algorithms used.
  • 48 studies are discussed to assist researchers in identifying the best methods that could be applied in their field and providing relevant ideas for future research directions. Moreover, a step-by-step guide to the machine learning process, including a classification of different machine learning algorithms, is provided.
  • This review focuses on state-of-the-art machine learning applications in milk products and their transformation into other dairy products, but it also presents future perspectives and conclusions. The study serves as a valuable guide for individuals in the dairy industry interested in learning about or getting involved with ML.

Smart Dairy Farming-The Potential of the Automatic Monitoring of Dairy Cows’ Behavior Using a 360-Degree Camera. Kurras F, Jakob M. Animals (Basel). 2024 Feb 16;14(4):640.

  • Animal behavior displays the physiological condition of an individual and is an important indicator for the evaluation of animal health and welfare. For example, an increased locomotor activity can be an indicator of estrus or may indicate discomfort, lameness or other problems in health, management or social structure. Standing and lying behavior has already been widely studied in the context of animal health.
  • The aim of this study is to show the potential of a vision-based system using a single 360° camera to describe the dairy cows’ behavior in a free-stall barn with an automatic milking system.
  • A total of 2299 snapshots were manually evaluated, counting the number of animals that were lying, standing and eating.
  • During the 18 hours of observation, the average lying time per cow was 5.9 hours, standing time was 6.9 hours, and feeding time was 5.2 hours. Since the accuracy rate of correctly detected animals is 93.1%, the camera technology seems to be a suitable tool for observing animal behavior and, thus, their health in real time.
  • In addition to determining the daily lying, standing and eating times, it is also possible to allocate animals to the individual functional areas so that anomalies such as prolonged standing in the cubicle or lying in the walkway can be detected at an early stage. In the ongoing project, the behavioral patterns will be recognized automatically using artificial intelligence.
  • When establishing a camera monitoring system in the future, attention should be paid to sufficient resolution of the camera during the night as well as the reduction of the concealment problem by animals and barn equipment. The automatic monitoring of animal behavior with the help of 360° cameras can be a promising innovation in the dairy barn.

Perceptions from the public on farmworker contributions to the US economy and attitudes toward farmworkers. Carmona Y, Parent MC. Cultur Divers Ethnic Minor Psychol. 2024 Feb 1.

  • Farmworkers in the United States contribute to the trillion-dollar agriculture industry through their work in agricultural fields, orchards, ranches, dairies, processing, and packing houses. Seventy-three percent of migrant and seasonal farmworkers in the United States are immigrants and face negative attitudes and prejudices.
  • The present study was designed to better understand how farmworkers in the United States are perceived by nonworkers.
  • Using a sample of 242 adult participants (Mean age = 26.85; 53.7% non-Hispanic White) from the United States collected online, data were collected on negative attitudes toward immigrants, perceptions of farmworkers’ contribution to the economy, and voting on hypothetical bills related to immigration.
  • Negative attitudes toward immigrants and perception of economic contribution were both significant in estimating voting, as was their interaction. At high levels of negative attitudes toward immigrants, knowledge of the economic contribution of farmworkers buffered the relationship between negative attitudes and support for pro-immigrant voting. Specifically, those who perceived farmworkers to contribute to the economy were more likely to indicate hypothetical pro-immigrant voting.
  • The present study highlights awareness of the importance of farmworkers to our economy in relation to attitudes toward farmworkers.

Milk Antiviral Proteins and Derived Peptides against Zoonoses. Santos I, Silva M, Grácio M, Pedroso L, Lima A. Int J Mol Sci. 2024 Feb 3;25(3):1842.

  • Milk is renowned for its nutritional richness but also serves as a remarkable reservoir of bioactive compounds, particularly milk proteins and their derived peptides. Recent studies have showcased several robust antiviral activities of these proteins, evidencing promising potential within zoonotic viral diseases.
  • While several publications focus on milk’s bioactivities, antiviral peptides remain largely neglected in reviews. This knowledge is critical for identifying novel research directions and analyzing potential nutraceuticals within the One Health context.
  • This review aims to gather the existing scientific information on milk-derived antiviral proteins and peptides against several zoonotic viral diseases, and their possible mechanisms.
  • Overall, in-depth research has increasingly revealed them as a promising and novel strategy against viruses, principally for those constituting a plausible pandemic threat. The underlying mechanisms of the bioactivity of milk’s proteins include inhibiting viral entry and attachment to the host cells, blocking replication, or even viral inactivation via peptide-membrane interactions.
  • Their marked versatility and effectiveness stand out compared to other antiviral peptides and can support future research and development in the post-COVID-19 era. Overall, this review helps to emphasize the importance of potentially effective milk-derived peptides, and their significance for veterinary and human medicines, along with the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, and dairy industry.

Partial substitutions of animal with plant protein foods in Canadian diets have synergies and trade-offs among nutrition, health and climate outcomes. Auclair O, Eustachio Colombo P, Milner J, Burgos SA. Nat Food. 2024 Feb;5(2):148-157.

  • Dietary guidelines emphasize the consumption of plant protein foods, but the implications of replacing animal with plant sources on a combination of diet sustainability dimensions are unknown.
  • Using a combination of data from a national nutrition survey, greenhouse gas emissions from dataFIELD and relative risks from the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017, researchers assess the impact of partially substituting red and processed meat or dairy with plant protein foods in Canadian self-selected diets on nutrition, health and climate outcomes.
  • The substitutions induced minor changes to the percentage of the population below requirements for nutrients of concern, but increased calcium inadequacy by up to 14% when dairy was replaced.
  • Replacing red and processed meat or dairy increased life expectancy by up to 8.7 months or 7.6 months, respectively.
  • Diet-related greenhouse gas emissions decreased by up to 25% for red and processed meat and by up to 5% for dairy replacements.
  • Co-benefits of partially substituting red and processed meat with plant protein foods among nutrition, health and climate outcomes are relevant for reshaping consumer food choices in addressing human and planetary health.

Sensory characteristics of plant-based milk alternatives: Product characterization by consumers and drivers of liking. Jaeger SR, Dupas de Matos A, Frempomaa Oduro A, Hort J. Food Res Int. 2024 Mar;180:114093.

  • Like other plant-based (PB) product categories, PB milk alternatives (PBMA) are in ascendency as part of the green consumer transition and a greater focus on personal health. However, consumption remains far below that for cow’s milk, and among multiple barriers to uptake, inferior sensory properties is one problem, nutritional inadequacies another.
  • While exceptions exist in both instances, a general need for improved products remains. The present research is situated in this nexus, and its primary aim was to contribute new consumer-centric insight regarding the sensory drivers of liking/disliking in the PBMA category.
  • This was achieved through a central location study with adult New Zealanders (n = 143, not regular PBMA consumers) who tasted 18 different PBMA samples spanning a broad range of PB ingredients (soy, oat, coconut, almond, rice, cashew, peanut, macadamia, lentil, hemp, sesame) in different product types (single PB source, blends, barista style) with varying nutritional profiles.
  • The most liked sample, which was made from soy, had the nutritional profile that most approximated cow’s milk (3 g/100 mL protein), as well as a milky appearance and taste. Its mouthfeel was smooth, and this sensory characteristic was also paramount for barista-style PBMAs being well-liked regardless of their constituent PB ingredient (oat, almond, coconut).
  • Opportunities for product innovation within this type of PBMA were identified including for using barista-style beyond hot beverages, as these samples received positive liking scores on average. The same applied to blends as multiple-source PBMAs can facilitate improved nutritional composition, and significant scope seemed to exist to identify more liked vs less liked PB ingredient combinations (e.g., almond/rice vs coconut/sesame).
  • By identifying, through penalty/lift analysis that positive sensory drivers of PBMA liking span all sensory modalities (appearance, taste, flavor, texture and mouthfeel), it becomes easier to appreciate that products in this category are complex and challenging to optimize.

Oral Astringency in Plant Proteins: An Underestimated Issue in Formulating Next-Generation Plant-Based Foods. Sarkar A. Annu Rev Food Sci Technol. 2024 Feb 5.

  • Ensuring the supply of affordable, palatable, healthy, and sustainable nutrients to feed the growing population without transgressing the planetary boundaries remains a key challenge in the food science community.
  • A dietary transition toward low-emission, plant-based foods, with less reliance on animal agriculture, is advocated for sustainability, health, and ethical reasons. A major hurdle for mainstream adoption of plant-based foods is their poor sensorial performance, such as nonjuicy and astringent textures as well as various off-flavors.
  • This review presents the current understanding of astringency and oral friction of plant-based foods. It focuses on plant proteins and their application in plant-based meat and dairy analogs. In addition, the latest advances in the quantitative characterization of astringency using tribology, electrochemistry, and cellular tools are covered.
  • Finally, researchers examine factors influencing astringency and propose easy-to-implement colloidal strategies that may mitigate astringency issues, thereby underpinning the design of the next generation of sustainable and pleasurable plant-based foods.