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The dharma shastras have regulations on what type of milk is sattvic and can be consumed:

Manusmriti - The milk of the cow that has not passed its ten days, as also that of the camel and of one-hoofed animals and of sheep; the milk of the irregular cow, as also the milk of the cow without her calf. [are all prohibited]

This rule is universally found in all dharma shastras. But as we know, modern dairy practices do not follow these rules. The cow is milked as soon as it gives birth, and is separated from her calf by being hooked up to a milking machine.

Vedanta Desikan also cites a verse from scripture in his grantha Rahasyatrayasara about the consequence of drinking prohibited milk:

He who eats white brinjals (eggplant), kommatti, cheese (or curds) made from the milk of a cow within ten days of its calving, the bulb of the lotus — he will never think in his last moments of Bhagavan, the Lord of the world

So considering the last line shows how much this kind of dairy displeases lord Vishnu, it doesn't make sense to use store bought milk in abhishekham for Vishnu during his poojas. In fact, it is probably also SINFUL.

So are there scripturally sanctioned alternatives for what to use in abhishekham? Or this is a "kAla exception" since 99% of dairy today is like this, and many temples, mathams, and ashrams use and drink store bought milk?

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    According to government statistics, buffaloes contribute about 49% of milk produced in India, while cows contribute around 47%. So it is more likely that packaged milk bought from stores comes from buffaloes. Buffalo milk & its derivatives are a strict no-no in religious activities. Some brands do sell cow-milk separately but then the question arises whether that milk is pure according to scriptural standards or not. Chances of adulteration (for example mixing the scripturally sanctioned 'pure' cow-milk with scripturally defined 'impure' cow-milk) must also be taken into consideration.
    – অনু
    Commented Oct 1, 2022 at 16:58
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    India doesn't imports milk from other countries because there blood-meal is used as fodder for livestock. Blood-meal is actually dried & proceesed blood obtained after slaughtering cows & calves for manufacturing processed beef & is used a protein-rich diet for livestock. You can substitute water for milk during abhiseka, but when it comes to food articles, I would prefer avoiding store-bought material.
    – অনু
    Commented Oct 1, 2022 at 17:06
  • @AnubrataBit Thanks for the comment. Just one thing: "Buffalo milk & its derivatives are a strict no-no in religious activities." - Buffalo is permitted according to the Manusmriti 5.9: "That of all wild animals, except the buffalo; the milk of females (women) and all soured substances should be avoided."
    – Ikshvaku
    Commented Oct 1, 2022 at 17:06
  • @AnubrataBit "blood-meal" - I live in the US and this is a big issue how they abuse cows.
    – Ikshvaku
    Commented Oct 1, 2022 at 17:07
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    you can buy imported cow ghee from indian stores
    – ram
    Commented Oct 2, 2022 at 1:49

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