The iodine content in Swedish milk must be increased

Through a close collaboration between industry organizations, dairy companies, advisors, and feed companies there will soon be more iodine in Swedish milk.

The iodine content in Swedish milk has become so low that it risks no longer being declared on the nutritional value tables of milk packaging. LRF Milk’s analysis of Swedish milk shows that from 2001 to 2019, the iodine content decreased from 16 micrograms to 10 micrograms per 100 grams of milk. However, by next year, it is hopefully back up to 16 micrograms.

To continue declaring iodine on milk packaging, feed companies are now increasing the amount of iodine in their feed for dairy cows. More iodine in the feed will result in more iodine in the milk.

The reasons for the decrease in iodine may be due to the increased use of rapeseed products in the cows’ feed or increased milk production per cow without adjusting the amount of minerals in the feed.

– Iodine is one of the most important nutrients in milk. Therefore, it is important that we maintain a consistently high level that also allows us to declare iodine in the milk’s nutritional value table in the future, says LRF’s nutrition expert Ann-Kristin Sundin.

Iodine is part of thyroid hormones T3 and T4 and is needed for metabolism. Iodine is naturally found in milk and dairy products, fish and seafood, eggs, and sea salt. In Sweden, table salt has also been enriched with iodine since the 1950s.

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