Family Life


2 min Read

Ask Dr. Marla: Is there a preferred brand of whole milk for one-year-olds?


Is there a specific brand of whole milk that is preferred over others for one-year-olds, or are all brands filtered the same way?


To answer your question I turned to the Dairy Farmers of Canada who taught me about some of the filtration processes available.

Microfiltration is a low pressure driven membrane filtration process and is widely used for bacteria reduction and fat removal in milk and whey as well as for protein standardization – especially of cheese milk.

Ultrafiltration is a medium pressure driven membrane filtration process and is used for a wide range of applications such as protein standardization of cheese milk, powders, fresh cheese production, protein concentration and decalcification of permeates as well as lactose reduction of milk.

Nanofiltration is a medium to high pressure driven membrane filtration and is mainly used for special applications such as partial demineralization of whey, lactose-free milk or volume reduction of whey.

Reverse osmosis is a high-pressure driven membrane filtration process and is normally used for concentration or volume reduction of milk and whey, milk solids recovery and water reclamation.

What does this mean? There is no difference between the types of filtered milk vs. non-filtered milk from a nutritional point of view. The use of ultra- or microfiltration is mainly to extend shelf-life and as an initial step for further processing (eg. cheese making or development of lactose-free milk) and is usually more expensive than non-filtered milk.

Typically, we do not recommend a specific brand of whole milk for one-year-olds. It can be fine-filtered milk, micro-filtred milk, or a milk that did not undergo a specific process of filtration, as long as the milk is pasteurized, which is the case for all milk sold in Canada.

The fat contained in milk is important for the development of the brain and for growth. Reduced fat milk is only recommended after age two (at which time, the recommendations of Canada’s Food Guide apply).

a man carrying two children

Related Articles