Milk sounding, stop deceptive recall of fresh milk


Meat sounding and cheese sounding have been discussed in recent months, thanks to aquestion in the European Parliament and a ruling by the Court of Justice. And it is time to address another consumer deception, milk sounding.


Inimitable in its genuine essence, milk. It is evoked in astronomy-with the Milky Way-and in vocabulary (‘milky’) to express what has always been known to all as such.

‘The name “milk” is reserved exclusively for the product of normal mammary secretion, obtained by one or more milkings, without any addition or subtraction.’

(EC Reg. 1234/07, All. XIII, pt. II)

Milk is crucial in the early life span of humans, as of all mammals. And it maintains a key role, for human nutrition, throughout the entire course of existence. For reasons that are partly explained by science, (1) partly by the age-old tradition of consumption.

Food name, milk and dairy products

Regulation (EC) No. 1234/2007 requires that the names of milk and milk products be reserved exclusively for the products listed in the relevant Annex XII, point II‘ (see upper paragraph, blue box). (2)

The European Commission, in Decision 2010/791/EU, has collected the names of foodstuffs that-in an exclusive exception to the above-can include the name of milk or its derivatives, despite having quite different characteristics. By reason of‘traditional use‘ and provided that‘the exact nature’ of the products is made clear to the consumer.

‘Almond milk’, ‘coconut milk’, ‘cocoa butter’, ‘butter beans’ are the only non-dairy product names allowed by the European Commission, in Italian language, in food names. (3)

Milk sounding

The rule system is so clear that no one dares to evoke milk anymore to describe a beverage made from grains (e.g., rice, oats) or legumes (e.g., soybeans).

The deceptions to the consumer, however, are more insidious and pass through the equating with fresh milk of foods that-when they even contain it among the ingredients, in a form distorted by industrial processing-are quite incomparable.

Milk sounding is that of the misleading advertisements for Galatine candies and Inalpi ‘milk slices,’ which we have already reported to the Advertising Self-Discipline Institute. And it is also that of Sangemini water, whose advertisement ventures a comparative claim with milk. (4)

Dario Dongo


(1) Cf. ‘Cow’s milk, role in human nutrition and health effects,’ Cra-Nut, June 2017, at

(2) See Decision 2010/791/EU, Recital 2.

(3) See Decision 2010/791/EU, Annex 1.

(4) In defiance of the criteria set forth in reg. EC 1924/06, Article 9. According to which nutritional comparisons can only be made between foods that belong to the same category. V. http://www.‘-60-grassi’-answers-lawyer-dario-dongo