The condensed milk industry in the United States began in 1856 with the granting of a patent, for "concentrating sweet milk by evaporation in vacuo." Today there are in this country more than 300 establishments, having a capacity of 15,000,000 pounds daily. The statistics for 1909, the latest at hand at this moment, show an annual production of about 500,000,000 pounds, valued at more than $33,000,000. These data are sufficiently impressive to make it worth while to inquire now and then about the status of condensed milk from the hygienic as well as from the economic standpoint.
It may be asked, first of all, what is supposed to be accomplished by converting fresh milk into the conserved product. It is very doubtful whether, the use of condensed milk can be defended primarily on economic principles. Obviously it cannot be cheaper than ordinary fresh milk having the same food value, otherwise