Much practical research has been done to find the "ideal way" for pasteurizing colostrum.

Logically, the temperature at which the pasteurization takes place must be high enough to kill enough pathogenic germs, but the temperature must not be too high because too many antibodies will denature (change in structure and composition).


Denaturation takes place en masse at a temperature of 63 ° C and higher.


A maximum pasteurization temperature of 60 ° C is the most ideal, it kills a lot of germs and the loss of antibodies as a result of the pasteurization is acceptable. 

A pasteurization time of 30 minutes (at 60 ° C) kills many pathogenic germs including Salmonella spp, Escherichia coli, Mycoplasma bovis and Listeria monocytogenes.

For the control of Mycobacterium avium subspecies para-tuberculosis, it appears that pasteurization should be at least 1 hour, whereby the results (depending on the initial contamination) are often still disappointing.


On "problem farms" it is therefore recommended to pasteurize for 2 hours for safety reasons, assuming that para-tuberculosis no longer occurs in the pasteurized colostrum. 

The disadvantage of this long pasteurization time is that the colostrum becomes “tougher” or more viscous.

It is then more difficult to administer this “thicker” colostrum. Especially if it is administered with a "slow" teat.


Do not pasteurize large quantities at once!

With a smaller amount, the temperature of 60 ° C is reached faster and remains more constant throughout the pasteurization process.

This has a major influence on the final result!

An additional advantage is that smaller pasteurization units also make it possible for cattle farmers with fewer cows to pasteurize colostrum themselves.

Nowadays, there are also companies that offer colostrum pasteurization for a fee.


In part 3 more about the disadvantages of pasteurisation and pasteurisation of cow's milk intended for calves.