Preserve colostrum with potassium sorbate

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Short-term colostrum storage may benefit from the addition of potassium sorbate, a common food preservative.

University of Minnesota research shows that bacteria counts in refrigerated colostrum were much lower after 96 hours when preserved with potassium sorbate compared to untreated colostrum (see chart below).

The cost per calf fed 4 quarts of colostrum is about 50 cents.


Total plate
count (cfu/mL)

Total coliform
count (cfu/mL)


Geometric mean after 96 hours

Refrigerated, plus preservative



Refrigerated, no preservative



Source: July 2005 Journal of Dairy Science, page 2571-2578

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