Vitamins

Vitamins are organic substances essential for many life processes. Milk includes fat soluble vitamins A , D, E, and K. Vitamin A is derived from retinol and ß -carotene. Because milk is an important source of dietary vitamin A, fat reduced products which have lost vitamin A with the fat, are required to supplement the product with vitamin A.

Milk is also an important source of dietary water soluble vitamins:

  • B1 - thiamine
  • B2 - riboflavin
  • B6 - pyridoxine
  • B12 - cyanocobalamin
  • niacin
  • pantothenic acid

There is also a small amount of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) present in raw milk but it is an insignificant amount relative to human needs and is quite heat-labile: about 20% is destroyed by pasteurization.

The vitamin content of fresh milk is given below: 

Vitamin Contents per litre
A (ug RE) 400
D (IU) 40
E (ug) 1000
K (ug) 50
B1 (ug) 450
B2 (ug) 1750
Niacin (ug) 900
B6 (ug) 500
Pantothenic acid (ug) 3500
Biotin (ug) 35
Folic acid (ug) 55
B12 (ug) 4.5
C (mg) 20