Before World War II, there was not a prevailing custom to take milk, meat, eggs, and other livestock products in Japan. To deal with high inflation and a shortage of food after the war, the government has grappled with made the development of livestock industry with the aim of contributing to stabilizing agricultural management by improving the infrastructure for dairy farming, increasing the degree of self-sufficiency in food supplies. The eating habits of people have rapidly improved by abundantly supplying high-quality milk and dairy products at reasonable prices. In this review the author introduced historical progress in the quality control of raw milk in postwar Japan.
Anxiety about bioterrorism attack using contaminated foods and drinks has increased in recent years. The attack is classified into two categories on the basis of differences in the targets, i. e., direct attack on human being and indirect attack on the economy. The characteristics of microorganisms and toxins which will be used for the attack are summarized and reviewed, together with medical products to minimize the effects of the biological weapons. Among more than 100 candidates for the weapons, Bacillus anthracis, a spore-forming bacterium , should be most dangerous, because of the high toxicity and extreme stability. The bacterium had been already used for the bioterrorism attacks on postal clerks, journalists, and others in USA in 2001. Botulinum toxins, as well as enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli, shigatoxins, and Francisella turarensis, are also important candidates for the attack on foods and drinks. Several difficulties in protection of the bioterrorism attack in Japan are briefly discussed in this paper.
Whey protein, a by-product of cheese-making, is recognized to enhance not only nutritional value but also various physical properties in many food products. Whey protein consists of several different proteins, including beta-lactoglobulin, alpha-lactalbumin, immunoglobuin, bovine serum albumin, lactoferrin, lactoperoxidase and glycomacropeptide. As a result of new separation technologies, individual whey proteins can be isolated from whey. Findings from in vitro, in vivo and limited human studies suggest health function of individual whey proteins. This paper reviews fractionation, utilization and health benefit of individual whey proteins.
In Japanese cheese market the rate of process cheese consumption is higher in total cheese consumption, comparing with US and European market. Therefore, process cheese has been diversified in Japanese market. This article surveys the diversity of Japanese process cheese and the recent new products. The following process cheese categories have developed in Japan. Since the meltable sliced cheese was released, the consumption has rapidly increased. Now the rate of the meltable sliced cheese consumption reached to 50% or over in the total sliced cheese. The convenience of the precut process cheese is driving away the block process cheese with carton in the recent decade. The candy type process cheese also has developed in Japan, which are consumed mainly as flavored cream cheese varieties for children. The remarkable new products are described as follows. The three-layered precut process cheese and the two-layered portion cheese make conspicuous not only flavor but also coloring in the layered process cheese. The new packages are small and airtight portions but easily openable. “Hojun Gouda” originated from Japan has plenty of free amino acids due to the fermentation by L. helveticus, so “Hojun Gouda” also makes the cheese flavor strong even in the process cheese. The number of process cheese with health claim, such as calcium or iron enriched process cheese, has gradually increased. On the other hand many studies recently demonstrated the health related functions of cheese. Considering the Japanese food trends, the health claims possibly become important in the process cheese development.
Probiotics are traditionally defined as live microorganisms that may beneficially affect the host by changing the balance of the intestinal microflora. Additionally, recently probiotics are known to exert physiological effects by modulating directly the immune responses. There are many mechanisms by which probiotics can enhance the host's health. The administration of probiotics to humans is expected to have effects on the prevention of infections, diarrhea, allergy and many other diseases. In the intestinal tract, bifidobacteria are the predominant microorganisms and one of the sources of antiinfective components in immature infants. Therefore, this review introduces current findings about the antiinfective and immunomodulatory effects of bifidobacteria.
Fermented milks are reported to have originated in the Middle East before the Phoenician era. Approximately 400 diverse products derived from fermentation of milk are consumed throughout the world. It is believed that fermentation was the first technique employed by human for preservation of milk. Fermentation conserves the vital nutrients of the milk, and also provides distinct health benefits beyond conventional nutrition as functional dairy products. A wide range of indigenous fermented milk products are traditionally made in rural areas, and most of these products rely primarily on spontaneous fermentation due to presence of indigenous microflora (mainly lactic acid bacteria) in the milk. This article surveys the traditional fermented milks in the various regions of the world, and also illustrates their dominant microflora.
Various improvements have been made to infant formulas until now. Thus, differences in growth and development of breast- and formula-fed infants are rather small. In order to mimic the growth and development of the breast-fed infant, many compounds have been added to formulas. In this paper, new supplements, especially derived from non-animal origin such as plant, to infant formula are reviewed: long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids, sn-2 (beta) palmitate, nucleotides, oligosaccharides, and inositol.
In this review, we discussed about consumption of milk and dairy products and health, especially on its relationship to life style related diseases. Consumption of milk and dairy products contributes to not only increasing in bone mineral density but also preventing metabolic syndromes including obesity, hypertension, and hyperlipidemia. The amount of milk and dairy products in Japanese is, however, not so large that further promotion is required.