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Summaries of EU Legislation

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Health criteria for untreated and heat-treated milk

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Health criteria for untreated and heat-treated milk



The European Union lays down health criteria for heat-treated milk (pasteurised, UHT or sterilised milk) for intra-EU trade.


Directive 89/384/EEC

The directive describes the procedures for checking the freezing point of untreated milk delivered to milk treatment establishments or collection or standardisation centres. Untreated milk from each farm holding must be checked regularly by random sampling.

If the results of the check prove that water has not been added to it, untreated milk may be used for producing heat-treated milk. If not, further checks must be carried out and, if the suspicion is confirmed, the milk must be excluded from the market.

Decision 92/608/EEC

This decision lays down methods for analysing and testing heat-treated milk for human consumption.

It describes the application of reference methods for analysis and testing, the fixing of reliability criteria and the collection of samples.

The analysis and testing methods for heat-treated milk for direct human consumption consist in determining a product’s:

total solids content,

fat content,

total non-fat solids content (i.e. lactose, protein, minerals, acids and enzymes),

total nitrogen content,

protein content,

specific mass.


Council Directive 89/384/EEC: from 26 June 1989.

Council Decision 92/608/EEC: from 31 December 1992.


Council Directive 89/384/EEC of 20 June 1989 establishing the detailed procedures for carrying out checks to ensure that the freezing point of untreated milk laid down in Annex A of Directive 85/397/EEC is complied with (OJ L 181, 28.6.1989, p. 50)

Council Decision 92/608/EEC of 14 November 1992 laying down methods for the analysis and testing of heat-treated milk for direct human consumption (OJ L 407, 31.12.1992, pp. 29-46)


Regulation (EC) No 853/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 29 April 2004 laying down specific hygiene rules for food of animal origin (OJ L 139, 30.4.2004, pp. 55-205).

The successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EC) No 853/2004 have been incorporated into the original document. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

Commission Regulation (EC) No 1664/2006 of 6 November 2006 amending Regulation (EC) No 2074/2005 as regards implementing measures for certain products of animal origin intended for human consumption and repealing certain implementing measures (OJ L 320 of 18.11.2006, pp. 13-45)

last update 26.10.2015