Milk, from medicine to food in Mediterranean Europe: Catalonia, 19th-20th centuries.
Roser Nicolau Nos
Josep Pujol Andreu
The spread of milk consumption was a significant change in the diet of Europeans, however it is one that has not been greatly studied with regard to the populations of Mediterranean Europe. In this article we shall analyse the main circumstances that conditioned that process in Catalonia between the middle of the 19th century and 1936. In our study we shall argue that the consumption of milk in this area was only relevant in the 19th century in situations of illness or old age, and that it subsequently increased and acquired a new significance as a result of various factors. In particular, we shall emphasise (a) the scientific advances in microbiology and nutrition, (b) the activities carried out by doctors and various public institutions to promote the consumption of fresh milk, and (c) the technological innovations in the milk producing sector. In Appendix 1 we show two maps representing the main territorial references that we shall mention.
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