Science win - protein from dairy milk is great for human teeth

Advocacy group Dairy Connect today extends its congratulations to Melbourne University’s Laureate Prof Eric Reynolds AO for taking out specialist research honors with the Prime Minister’s Prize for Innovation in Science on Wednesday night.

Laureate Professor Eric Reynolds

Laureate Professor Eric Reynolds

The $250,000 prize for innovation was awarded to Prof Reynolds who identified and commercialised a protein in dairy milk that repairs and strengthens damaged teeth.

Dairy Connect CEO Shaughn Morgan hailed Eric Reynolds as a ‘true trailblazer’ in dairy research whose discovery 30 years ago had improved the overall dental health of humankind.

“Eric Reynolds invented and commercialised a way of putting a dairy milk protein in chewing gum, toothpaste and other oral products,” he said.

“His discovery, known commercially as Recaldent, is actively prescribed by oral health professionals across the world.

“Recaldent has reportedly saved more than $12 billion in dental treatment costs worldwide and generated sales of more than $2 billion.

“This win reinforces Dairy Connect’s public policy position that milk from mammals – in our case dairy cows – greatly supports human nutrition when compared with lesser benefits delivered by plant-derived drinks.

“The beverage market has seen a sharp rise in the number of dairy-imitations calling themselves ‘milks’ made from plants such as rice, soy, almond and oats.

“There has been confusion among consumers, some of whom equate the great nutritional benefits of cows’ milk with the plant-drink alternatives.

“The European Union Court of Justice this year ruled in favour of the need to differentiate nutritionally between dairy products and plant-derived products. 

“We would like to see Australia keep up with the progressive dairy labelling laws in overseas markets.”