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Pure milk can help cut stunting in children

By Our Correspondent
June 02, 2023

LAHORE:University of Veterinary & Animal Sciences Lahore Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Nasim Ahmad has said that stunting in children is a big challenge and a major problem which could be reduced by consuming pure and safe milk.

The vice-chancellor was addressing a seminar arranged by the UVAS Department of Dairy Technology to observe the World Milk Day here Thursday. Various activities including a walk, a seminar, a question-answer session on safe milk, milk drinking and milk-made food items competitions featured the day to create awareness about the importance of milk, its nutritional value and various milk products.

The vice-chancellor led the walk and chaired the seminar while Dean Faculty of Animal Production and Technology Prof Dr Prof Dr Saima, Dean Biosciences Prof Dr Habibur Rehman, Chairperson Department of Parasitology Prof Dr Kamran Ashraf, Chairperson Department of Dairy Technology Dr Saima Inayat, Dr Muhammad Junaid and dairy technology students, faculty members and Punjab Food Authority and Livestock Department officials, representatives from public and private industry and farmers were present. Prof Dr Nasim Ahmad spoke about the importance of milk and various problems related to safety and quality of milk. He said that research suggests milk consumption could reduce the problem of stunting in children. He said that milk pricing was also an issue, which could be solved by decapping it. He said that there were challenges as well as opportunities in the dairy sector and we should exploit the opportunities.

The VC visited a stall displaying various food items made from milk by dairy technology students. He distributed shields among the guests, organisers and contest winning students. Meanwhile, the Pakistan Dairy Association (PDA) also celebrated World Milk Day by hosting a milk awareness seminar and organising awareness sessions about milk, followed by the distribution of 15,000 milk packs to students in City and its surrounding areas. The seminar took place at the Lahore College for Women University (LCWU), and was hosted by Dr Shehzad Amin, CEO of Pakistan Dairy Association, in the presence of relevant government officials, dignitaries, and stakeholders.

The ceremony featured prominent speakers, including, Punjab Caretaker Health Minister Prof Dr Javed Akram, LCWU Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Bushra Mirza, and University of Education (UOE) VC Dr Talat Naseer Pasha. Rao M Imran, Head of Quality & Regulatory Affairs at Fauji Foods Limited, presented on ‘Safe Dairy Nutrition Makes a Strong Nation,’ followed by Dr Zubair Ahmed, Manager Operations at Pakistan Dairy Association, who spoke about ‘Factors Affecting Milk Quality and Safety from Farm to Fork.’ Dr Muhammad Junaid, Project Director of Milk Value Chain at the UVAS, Lahore, delivered a presentation on ‘Dairy as a Wholesome Food’.

Dr Uzma Ashiq Khan, Head of Gender and Development Studies, appreciated the role of Pakistan Dairy Association in promoting the importance of safe milk consumption. Dr Talat Naseer Pasha, UOE Vice-Chancellor, emphasised that prioritising women's health involved embracing milk as a nutrient-rich beverage. With its calcium for strong bones, protein for muscle maintenance, and vitamin D for immune support, milk aided in reducing the risk of osteoporosis and enhancing overall well-being.

Dr Shehzad Amin stated, ‘On World Milk Day, we highlight the significance of milk and dairy products. A glass of milk provides daily nourishment to everyone, including children while fostering strong bones, muscles, and overall health.’