Novel on-line sensor technology for continuous monitoring of milk coagulation and whey separation in cheese making
Fagan, C. C., Castillo, M., Payne, F.A., O'Donnell, C.P., Leedy, M. and O'Callaghan, D.J. (2007) Novel on-line sensor technology for continuous monitoring of milk coagulation and whey separation in cheese making. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 55 (22). pp. 8836-8844. ISSN 0021-8561
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To link to this item DOI: 10.1021/jf070807b
The cheese industry has continually sought a robust method to monitor milk coagulation. Measurement of whey separation is also critical to control cheese moisture content, which affects quality. The objective of this study was to demonstrate that an online optical sensor detecting light backscatter in a vat could be applied to monitor both coagulation and syneresis during cheesemaking. A prototype sensor having a large field of view (LFV) relative to curd particle size was constructed. Temperature, cutting time, and calcium chloride addition were varied to evaluate the response of the sensor over a wide range of coagulation and syneresis rates. The LFV sensor response was related to casein micelle aggregation and curd firming during coagulation and to changes in curd moisture and whey fat contents during syneresis. The LFV sensor has potential as an online, continuous sensor technology for monitoring both coagulation and syneresis during cheesemaking.