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JAMA 100 Years Ago
October 17, 2001


Author Affiliations

JenniferReiling, Assistant Editor

JAMA. 2001;286(15):1811. doi:10.1001/jama.286.15.1811-JJY10035-1-2

Milk is one of the most important of human foods and also one most liable to contamination between the producer and the user. Hence the complexity of the question as to a pure milk supply and the special interest to the profession of a recent report that has just been given out, by a commission of New York physicians, of which Dr. Henry Dwight Chapin is the head. The method adopted was to establish a bacterial standard of marketable milk, making the bacterial contents per cubic centimeter the index of purity. The leading milk-dealers were invited to co-operate and some of them have apparently aided materially in the investigation, adopting the suggestions made by the commission and showing generally a readiness to carry out what measures were necessary. The need of such was made sufficiently evident by the first test of milk taken directly from the dealers on a mild November day, when the bacterial contents of the samples ranged from 13,000 to 2,800,000. On a warm June day the following summer in six samples taken at random it ranged from 520,000 to 216,000,000. These are mentioned as from the better grades of milk used in New York.