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Milk Brands in Singapore: What Every Parent Needs to Know

 

Cows milk in Singapore is somewhat of a minefield for us innocent parents. Overcome by marketing hype, spiel and carefully-worded jargon, we often can’t tell the difference between nutritious goodness and over-processed white liquid that contains very little nutrients whatsoever.

If you want to be assured that the cow’s milk you’re giving your toddler contains the good stuff the little one needs, you need to be completely au fait with some of the terminology that you’ll find on the average milk cartoon. If you don’t know your homogenized from your UHT, and your grain fed from your pasture-raised, take a quick look at our guide to cow’s milk in Singapore before you read on.

As we established in our previous article, if you want the best for bub, you simply have to make sure you read the labels on the average carton of milk extremely carefully. You’re basically looking out for two things: Where the milk comes from and how it is processed. The ideal pint of milk may look something like the following:

The ideal pint of milk?

choose cows milk wisely-01

Can you get your hands on such a milk in Singapore? We have taken a pretty thorough look at some of the popular cows milk brands that are available here on the Red Dot. You can check out our findings here: milk brands in Singapore.

Haven’t got the time mama? We’ve put some of the top brands under the microscope for you.

 

Organic milk in Singapore

Paul’s Pure Organic

Pauls organic-01

Origin of cows: Australia
Where cows actually live: Australia
Organic certification: NASAA certified
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: No
Permeate free? According to the packaging, the milk is “naturally permeate free.”
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: A mixture of grass, grain and hay: “[the cows] may also be fed some grain in the dairy while being milked and Hay or Silage (conserved forage) if there is not enough grass available.”
Where to buy? Marketplace
Price: $6.90 (1 litre)
Comments: Paul’s organic is a great choice for health-conscious mamas because it is minimally processed, organic and free of nasties. However, it was very difficult to find straightforward information about the feed provided to the cows and information on the corporate group website indicates that they are not purely grassfed or pasture raised.

Paris Creek Full Fat Milk

Picture of Paris Creek Full Fat Milk

Origin of cows: Australia
Where cows actually live: Australia
Organic certification: Certified organic/biodynamic with ACO
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: No
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: Free range, grass fed.
Where to buy? Supernature
Price: $27.00 (2 litres)
Comments: Pricey, but a great choice for moms who are seeking milk that has been minimally processed and produced by grass-fed cattle.

Organic Valley Whole Milk

Picture of organic valley milk
Origin of cows: United States
Where cows actually live: United States
Organic: USDA organic certified.
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? Yes
Feed: Pasture raised.
Where to buy? Cold Storage
Price: $16.65/litre.
Comments: This milk is very expensive and has been heavily processed, so any advantage you may gain from the fact that the cattle was pasture raised will probably be no longer relevant. Organic Valley also sell two types of whole milk: one that is 100% grass fed and one that isn’t, so check the label carefully before you buy.

Horizon

Picture of a carton of Horizon organic milk
Origin of cows: United States
Where cows actually live: United States
Organic: USDA certified
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized:
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? Yes
Feed: Claims to be grass fed but rumour has it, this isn’t entirely true.
Where to buy?
Price:
Good to know: Horizon milk has a somewhat spotted history involving many accusations of fraudulent claims and false statements. For example, in 2005 the Cornucopia Institute, a Wisconsin-based farm policy group, filed a formal complaint against Dean Foods for violating organic law by confining their cattle rather than grazing them on pasture. Given the lack of confidence surrounding the extent to which the claims made by the marketers of this milk are actually true, it’s probably not worth the price tag.

True Organic Milk

Picture of a carton of true organic milk
Origin of cows: Australia
Where cows actually live: Australia
Organic: NASAA Certified Organic
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? Yes
Feed: Grass
Where to buy? Fair Price
Price: $3.40 litre.
Good to know: This milk comes from good, well-fed stock but unfortunately it has been ultra heat treated, so it will not offer your bub the same nutritious goodness as the organic, and even unorganic, brands that treat their products more gently.


Non-Organic Milk Brands in Singapore

Dairy Folks

Dairy folks milk singapore

Origin of cows: The original herd was bought from Australia some 20~30 years ago.
Where cows actually live: On the Dairy Folks farm in Singapore.
Pasteurized: Yes. Single.
Homogenized: No
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: The cows are fed with mainly fresh grass that is harvested on a daily basis.
Where to buy? Online from the Dairy Folks website
Price: $5.50 litre. $5 delivery. Free local delivery above $20. Allow three working days for delivery.
Good to know: Made right here in Singapore, with the exception that this milk wasn’t produced by organic cows, it ticks all the major boxes. Unfortunately, it isn’t available in the supermarkets but, with a little forward planning, you can stock up and get free delivery in the process.

Greenfields

Picture of a carton of Greenfields milk
Origin of cows: Australia
Where cows actually live: Indonesia
Pasteurized: Yes. Single.
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: Grain
Where to buy? Available in all major supermarkets
Price: $3.30 litre.
Good to know: Because the milk comes from Indonesia as opposed to Australia, it is highly likely that it is fresher and will last longer. However, the cows live in Indonesia and are not guaranteed to have been raised to the same standards as those required by law in Australia.

Meiji


Picture of Meiji milk

Origin of cows: Thailand
Where cows actually live: Thailand
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Unknown
Hormone free? No information available
Antibiotic free? No information available
UHT? No
Feed: No information available
Where to buy? All major supermarkets in Singapore
Price: Around $3.00 litre
Good to know: Despite common misconception, this milk is not produced in Japan, it is simply Japanese owned. The lack of publicly published information about how this milk is produced is concerning.

Marigold

Picture of Marigold milk
Origin of cows: Australia
Where cows actually live: Australia
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Marigold do not specifically say that they don’t add “permeates”
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: Pasture raised.
Where to buy? Supermarkets throughout Singapore
Price: $5 – 6 SGD 2 litre
Good to know: Marigold milk is produced in Australia but packaged in Singapore. As such, it is highly likely that it undergoes double pasturisation. There is also a distinct lack of disclosure around whether or not the milk contains permeates.

Magnolia

Picture of magnolia milk
Origin of cows: Unknown
Where cows actually live: Unknown
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: Grass, supplemented with hay and other feed if the grass levels are too low.
Where to buy? All major supermarkets in Singapore
Price: Around $3.50 SGD 1 litre
Good to know: Magnolia fresh milk is described as a Product of Singapore because it’s packed here. However, as soon as a curious mama tries to research exactly where the milk comes from, she will soon find herself hitting a brick wall very hard. There appears to be no information whatsoever about where the producing cows are from and reside. Those who have contacted Magnolia have been informed that the location of the cows is confidential but that they are “all over Asia.”

Pura

Picture of Pura milk
Origin of cows: Australia
Where cows actually live: Australia
Pasteurized: Yes
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Unsure
Hormone free? Yes
Antibiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: Grass, supplemented with hay and other feed if the grass levels are too low.
Where to buy? All major supermarkets in Singapore
Price: Around $3.50 per litre
Good to know: Pura was involved in the 2012 permeates scandal. In Australia, their milk is now marketed as permeate free; however, the milk sold in Singapore doesn’t have the same permeate-free labels: does this mean that the Pura milk sold in Singapore isn’t permeate free?

Farmhouse

Picture of farmhouse milk
Origin of cows: Australia
Where cows actually live: Australia
Pasteurized: Yes. Potentially double.
Homogenized: Yes
Permeate free? Yes
Hormone free? Yes
Antiobiotic free? Yes
UHT? No
Feed: Mix of pasture, hay, various types of grains and cotton seed.
Where to buy? All major supermarkets in Singapore
Price: $5.95 2 litres
Good to know: Farmhouse milk is produced in Australia but packaged in Singapore. As such, it is highly likely that it undergoes double pasteurization.

 

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25 Comments

  1. There’s an error – True Organics is half the price as quoted here. I know for a fact because we were consumers until we switched over to Devondale and Harvey Fresh.
    I will be cautious to take information for the foodrenegade page. The author is clearly an extremist – she takes only raw milk and does not recommend pasteurised milk of any kind. While the pasteurisation process denatures much of the beneficial enzymes, the essential nutrients are not significantly destroyed. Both should not be confused, such that parents begin to think formula milk is the better option because pasteurised milk has lost all it’s nutrients anyway.

    Reply
    • Thanks for the additional information. I have updated the price of True Organics. From my own reading I can see that the debate as to whether pasteurisation significantly reduces/kills essential nutrients is still raging. I think the underlying message is this: raw milk should never be given to baby; that said, the less processing that a milk has undergone, the better.

      Reply
  2. I went to the diary folks website, it did not say that they are hormones free and antibiotics free although they did state other things like permeate free. Just wonder why would they not say they antibiotics and hormones free too.

    Reply
    • Hi, that’s a good question. I contacted them directly and their manager, Thanikodi Iswaran, confirmed the following:

      “The original herd was bought from Australia some 20~30 years ago.
      The cows live in barns on our farm, here in Singapore.
      The milk is not homogenized.
      The milk is permeate, antibiotic and hormone free.
      The milk is single pasteurized.
      The cows are fed with mainly fresh grass that we harvest everyday.
      The milk is not ultra heat treated.”

      Reply
  3. Very useful info. Thank you so much. I see many people buying meiji milk in Singapore despite it’s labeled as GMP. Is it safe to use meiji for kids? Meiji is the first milk I tried after coming to Singapore. It suited me but once I saw the GMP label, I discontinued it. I tried Magnolia and it’s not digesting for me, I puke it out within half an hour. Which milk to use in Singapore is a million dollar question to me and I’m puzzled what to give to my baby who has turned one year.

    Reply
  4. I visited the Dairy Folks farm last Saturday and bought a bottle of milk to try. Upon opening, I could see a layer of cream floating on top of the milk… 🙂 I do like the taste of the milk, but found it not as creamy as the living planet full cream organic milk that I usually buy from NTUC.

    I have also tried Paul’s organic full cream milk and also found it thinner than the living planet full cream milk. I wonder if non homogenized milk taste slightly thinner than homogenized milk since the fats could be separated after some time.

    Ha…. I guess my next taste test would be the Paris creek organic full cream milk. It is also non homogenized and I shall find out if its creamy or not.

    In the mean time, I’m also checking with Living planet organic milk if their milk is single pasteurized or double. I tend to suspect double as I find that the stock which NTUC displays can sometimes be dated more than a month before expiry.

    Btw, at the Dairy Folks farm, I could see crates of freshly cut grass stacked up on the ground at the barn. So yes, it appears that the cows are grass fed. It would be great if the cows are fed exclusively on grass though… as I’ve read that some nutrients are lost in the milk if the cows are fed on small amount of grains.

    Reply
  5. Thanks for all the research. Very helpful indeed. I’ve recently bought cowhead fresh milk. It said gmo, antibiotics, permeate, hormone free on the tetrapack. Says its from oz and packed 24 hours from the farm but unknown where but from cows fed on free range pastures. another site said single pasturized non homogonized from grass fed cows.

    Its S$3.50 / litre, much lower than the organic milk i was buying.

    Seems to check all the boxes. Great or too good to be true?

    Reply
  6. Hi – I’m not a parent, but just wanted you to know I found your information on milk in Singapore to be very informative.

    Thank you.
    Max

    Reply
  7. Hi, I’m interested in the dairy folks milk, however, I went to the website and it did not states how long can I keep the milk for? Cause 4 bottles of milk (for free delivery) is alot if it can’t keep for long.

    Any kind soul that have bought the milk can advise?

    Reply
  8. I think the article is pretty misleading.
    Calcium source is the most important aside from everything else.

    If the product is from calcium carbonate aka calcium from chalk/seashells/rocks, regardless mentioned above will be totally irrelevant. Calcium carbonate result in higher chance of heart diseases and osteoporosis. There are many articles published in New England Journal and by U.K NHS.

    What we want is food source calcium or at least calcium phosphate aka calcium from cow also known as bovine milk.

    It will be good to read up and understand and post a new article in 2017 regarding this.

    Feel free to email me if you need assistance in the write up.

    Reply

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