ThimphuTech was the first technology blog in Bhutan. We started writing it in 2009, just as broadband and mobile internet started to take off. (Although internet in Bhutan was launched in 1999, it was either super-slow or super-expensive, and was only used by a selected few).

In the blog, we wrote about technology and food, but also about plenty of other stuff. The blog became popular and influential in Bhutan. A companion bi-weekly column -- Ask Boaz -- was published for many years in the Kuensel, Bhutan's national newspaper. (The complete Kuensel columns are available as an ebook, Blogging with Dragons).

We stopped updating the blog when we left Bhutan in 2014, but the information within the posts can still prove useful, and thus we decided to keep it online.

We thank all our readers.
Tashi Delek,
Boaz & Galit.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Heat no more: fresh pasteurized milk finally available in Thimphu

The rumors circulating in the last couple of weeks are now officially true: we will finally be able to purchase fresh pasteurized milk in Thimphu! The Ministry of Agriculture posted about the inauguration of the mini-plant in Wangchutaba on their website:
"Thimphu city will now have the supply of processed pasteurized milk in 500 ml poly pack. The packed milk is now available for sale at Yoghurt Plant, Chubachu and other retail outlets in Thimphu town. The plant has the capacity of processing 2000 liters per day using the HTST method of pasteurization. It is currently operated by the National Livestock Breeding Programme, Department of Livestock."
Having ready-to-drink fresh milk is a wonderful upgrade. For those who have been buying fresh milk it will save time and expenses for heating the milk. More importantly, it will offer healthier milk! Most Thimphupas buy fresh milk and boil it for safety (to avoid milk-borne illnesses such as tuberculosis, typhoid and diphteria). Boiling makes the milk safe to drink by killing bacteria, but it also removes a lot of its nutritional value (see more here). In contrast, pasteurization which heats the milk at lower temperatures for short durations, only kills bacteria and enzymes but not the vitamins.

For those who have been opting for boxed UHT milk (Zimdra, Amul Taaza, and the like) for shelf life reasons, pasteurized milk offers a better alternative, and it keeps longer than fresh milk (a few days in refrigeration). Moving from imported milk to locally-produced milk is good not only for us consumers (healthier and tastes better), but also for Bhutan's industry. Here's a great chance to support the local daily industry and fight the causes of the Rupee Crunch!

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