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Milk added to tea and coffee measures program

Background

In September 2011, FSANZ undertook a small program to estimate the weight of a ‘dash’ or ‘splash’ of milk typically added to tea, or to coffee prepared from instant coffee powder. The results were used to assign a gram amount to dashes and splashes of milk reported as added to tea or coffee during the 2011–13 Australian Health Survey (AHS).

Sampling and preparation

Volunteers from FSANZ were asked to prepare themselves a tea or coffee after first weighing their empty cup. The cup was then re-weighed to determine the volume of tea or coffee without added milk. Participants were then asked to add their ‘usual’ quantity of milk to their beverage, and record whether they considered this amount to be a dash, a splash or something else. The entire cup with tea or coffee and added milk was then weighed a final time to allow the gram weight and the proportion of milk in the beverage to be determined.

Results

A total of 45 suitable weights for a dash or splash of milk added to tea or coffee were recorded. There was substantial variation in the amount of milk added to tea and coffee ranging from 5-79 g, with an average of 31 g. The range of values and averages were similar whether people called the addition a ‘dash’ or a ‘splash’.

The volume of the tea or coffee did not have an effect on the quantity of milk added, with the proportion of milk ranging from 2% in a 227 g beverage to 47% in 169 g beverage.

The quantity of milk did not differ whether it was added to tea or coffee. Average measures for both ‘dash’ and ‘splash’ in tea or coffee were within 4 g of each other.

The complete set of results generated from this program is shown in Table 1.

Table 1       Amount of milk added to tea or coffee as a dash or splash


Number

Reported as dash or splash

Weight of tea or coffee only (g)

Weight of milk (g)

% of milk in beverage

1

dash

90

79

47

2

dash

162

31

16

3

dash

165

47

22

4

dash

170

5

3

5

splash

170

16

9

6

dash

173

48

22

7

dash

181

27

13

8

dash

182

23

11

9

dash

185

9

5

10

splash

185

32

15

11

dash

189

20

10

12

dash

191

20

9

13

dash

191

27

12

14

dash

195

21

10

15

dash

199

22

10

16

dash

200

9

4

17

dash

202

19

9

18

splash

202

58

22

19

dash

209

11

5

20

dash

210

9

4

21

splash

211

51

19

22

splash

215

15

7

23

dash

221

13

6

24

dash

221

38

15

25

dash

222

9

4

26

splash

222

5

2

27

dash

226

27

11

28

splash

227

27

11

29

splash

227

35

13

30

dash

228

16

7

31

dash

229

18

7

32

dash

231

9

4

33

splash

233

38

14

34

splash

234

48

17

35

dash

239

19

7

36

dash

240

71

23

37

splash

242

43

15

38

splash

242

50

17

39

splash

243

54

18

40

dash

246

54

18

41

dash

258

19

7

42

splash

261

51

16

43

dash

266

28

10

44

dash

272

18

6

45

dash

280

17

6

Average (range):

dash

209 (90-280)

25 (5-79)

11 (3-47)

splash

222 (170-261)

37 (5-58)

14 (2-22)

dash & splash

213 (90-280)

31 (5-79)

12 (2-47)

 

Updates to the food measures database

Given the small differences observed, it was concluded that a dash and splash could be assumed to be the same for the purpose of the AHS. The final volume for dash and splash was considered to be 30 mL.

The 30 mL volume was then multiplied by the density of each milk type, to calculate a gram weight for each of the milk or milk-replacement products reported as dash or splash during the AHS. These include:

  • all liquid cow’s milk (including condensed and evaporated)
  • coconut milk
  • soy beverage
  • goat milk
  • oat milk
  • rice milk

Conclusion

The results of the dash and splash measures program have given FSANZ an improved level of confidence about the quality of the dash and splash measures for milk added to tea or coffee reported during the AHS.

 

 

 

 

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