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Veterinary Medicine International
Volume 2018 (2018), Article ID 1031726, 9 pages
Research Article

Assessment of Raw Cow Milk Quality in Smallholder Dairy Farms in Pemba Island Zanzibar, Tanzania

1Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, P.O. Box 90543, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
2Department of Veterinary Medicine and Public Health, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Sokoine University of Agriculture, P.O. Box 3021, Chuo Kikuu, Morogoro, Tanzania
3Pest Management Centre, Sokoine University of Agriculture, P.O. Box 3010, Chuo Kikuu, Morogoro, Tanzania
4Department of Veterinary Services, Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries, P.O. Box 295, Zanzibar, Tanzania
5Department of Animal Science and Production, Sokoine University of Agriculture, P.O. Box 3004, Chuo Kikuu, Morogoro, Tanzania

Correspondence should be addressed to H. E. Nonga

Received 28 September 2017; Accepted 24 January 2018; Published 12 March 2018

Academic Editor: Ingo Nolte

Copyright © 2018 S. H. Gwandu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Milk quality depends on the physicochemical characteristics, hygienic standards, and nutritional quality; however, animal husbandry practices, unhygienic harvesting and processing, may affect its quality. A cross-sectional study was conducted between August 2010 and July 2011 to assess the hygiene of cow milk production environment, raw cow milk physicochemical characteristics, and microbial quality and estimate the prevalence of antimicrobial residues using standard methods in Pemba Island. A total of 98 raw cow milk samples from selected smallholder dairy farms were analyzed, and the judgement on the quality used the East African Standards. Generally, the milk production chain was done under the unhygienic condition, and dirty plastic containers were used for collection and storage of milk under room temperature. Some milk samples had abnormal colour (2.1%), abnormal smell (7.1%), and pH below normal (35.7%), clotted on alcohol test (9.2%), and had the specific gravity below normal (13.3%). All the milk samples had mineral contents within the recommended range. Milk samples with butterfat below normal were 29.6%, while 14.3% had total solids below recommended values. The mean total viable count (TVC) of milk container surfaces was  log CFU/100 cm2, while total coliform count (TCC) was  log CFU/100 cm2. Up to 55.1% of milk had TVC beyond the recommended levels. The milk mean TVC was  log CFU/ml and TCC was  log CFU/ml. Up to 26.5% of milk samples had the TCC beyond levels. Results on physicochemical characteristics and nutritional analysis show that the raw cow milk in Pemba Island is of inferior quality. Microbiological results of this study imply heavy contaminations of milk. Antimicrobial residues were detected in 83% of the samples and most of them were from Wete District. Unhygienic milk production chain accelerates microbial contaminations, and antimicrobial residues in milk are a big problem that needs urgent attention from the responsible authority.