NIR in Dairy Processing: Measure Moisture, Protein, Fat, and Other Parameters with Ease

As raw milk is a commodity, many dairy products are price-competitive, making consistency and production efficiency vitally important for generating a profit. Many dairy products, from fluid milk to milk powders, are sold based on quality parameters. Incorporating methods to accurately measure these parameters is a must for dairy processing plants.

For all dairy products, virtually every step and ingredient must be of a specified quality and composition to produce a consistent final product. For example:

How Near Infrared (NIR) Technology Helps Processors Control these Important Parameters

NIR analysis is a proven technique that provides simultaneous results for moisture, fat, protein, lactose, solids, and other measurable parameters that are essential to the production of dairy products. The speed of analysis allows 100% measurement of incoming ingredients and finished products. 

Application Examples:

Moisture Control

Challenge: Over-drying or under-drying of Milk Protein Concentrate (MPC), Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC), and other powders can affect quality. If there is too much moisture, they can spoil; too little, and the cost of production increases since these ingredients are sold by weight.

Solution: With the help of NIR technology, processors can ensure moisture consistency of these important ingredients down to a fraction of a percent. This translates to significant paybacks over a short time. 

Protein Control

Challenge: Because MPC and WPC powders are also sold on a specified protein level, having a method to measure this protein content without interrupting production is a major value to processors.

Solution: Incorporating At-line NIR analysis of dried protein concentrates can instantly verify the protein levels, ensuring the product is properly binned, while also reducing re-work and waste.  

Liquid Whey Analysis

Challenge: Data on total solids and protein value of curds separated from the drying process is important for improving yield.

Solution: Incorporating NIR analysis at key stages of the drying process can help processors maintain these optimal levels from start to finish, resulting in significant energy savings and less waste to animal feed or discard.

Take Total Quality Control of Your Dairy Plant with NIR Technology

From the mixing of ingredients to the packaging of final products for consumers, there are a lot of variables that can impact food quality across the entire production process. Fortunately for dairy food processors, most of these variables can be measured with the help of NIR technology, either in a lab setting, or on the production line.

Follow the links below to learn more about KPM Analytics NIR systems.

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