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May 22, 1915


JAMA. 1915;LXIV(21):1767-1768. doi:10.1001/jama.1915.02570470051019

Although the pasteurization of milk has become a familiar process in various parts of the United States and is highly lauded in many quarters as an admirable safeguard of the health of consumers, there still is considerable misconception regarding the results actually accomplished. The real function of pasteurization, that is, its actual effect on the milk involved, is not understood so adequately or accurately as it ought to be. Those least conversant with the underlying facts often believe that the procedure destroys all the micro-organisms present in raw milk; the results attained are confused with what is attempted in complete sterilization of milk by more vigorous methods. The more rational assumption, on which the current practices in general are based, is that pasteurization of milk, by heating it to a temperature of from 60 to 63 C. (140 to 145.4 F.) and holding it at this temperature for from twenty