management team in the efficient running of the business.
This exercise is in line with the mandate of the Plant Manager, to offer relevant insights on the current company practices to new personnel. Dairy Cream International reviews the plant manufacturing process as international dairy technology standards change. Likewise, the office of the Plant Manager communicates the process reviews in detail to the relevant company officers. The memo describes the entire yoghurt manufacturing process, from milk reception to packaging. Yoghurt is prepared from milk received by the company at the plant from our diverse supply pool form all over the country. Processing is carried out by the company’s specially trained process attendants and technicians. Hygiene and sterility of the plant are a necessity, which compels the company to use exceptionally high standards. Technology and microbiological aspects of the plant are contained in the laboratory manuals, which will be availed at request to any officer.
Firstly, the company has specific procedure effective upon arrival of milk at the plant, which covers two sensitive areas namely:
Reception: the road tanker collecting milk from the farms is usually dispatched with a team of mobile lab technicians. Milk is assessed at the collection units for quality, to ensure that no additives have been introduced in to the milk. The collected milk is treated with preservatives of the recommended type and accurate quantity.
Storage: at the plant, the milk is deposited into a storage tank with controlled temperature and sterility. Sterility is ensured by killing harmful micro-organisms that tamper with yoghurt quality using antimicrobial (microorganism killer) agents.
Secondly, milk is introduced into the pasteurizing vat (chamber using steam and high pressure to cook milk) and fermented after cooling. Fermentation is done by introduction of specific types of yoghurt fermenting bacteria species (Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus delbrueckii) (Tamine, 224). The pasteurized and fermented milk is then introduced into the mixing chamber where standardization processes are carried out to ensure that the desired quality of the milk is achieved. The various types of standardization procedures involved are:
Fat content: milk butter content is usually between 3.7 and 4.2 grams in every 100g of milk. This is lowered to yoghurt standards (1.5g/100g for medium fat and 0.5g/100g for low fat yoghurt). This is achieved by
full cream milk mixing with skimmed milk,
adding cream to either full fat or skimmed milk types or
a combination of some of these
Solids-not-fat content in milk are other solids suspended in milk but not fat in nature. 8.2 to 8.6 g/100g is the required range, but enhancements may be done to modify quality. Proteins and casein are concentrated in highly mechanized conditions, such as membrane filtration, vacuum evaporation and additions (contained in laboratory manulas) (Smit, 6).
Thirdly, stabilizers are added (chemicals to retain some desirable yoghurt features such as texture and appearance). Natural, semi-synthetic and synthetic gums are added as stabilizers. Sweetening agents are also incorporated if the yoghurt is to be manufactured in a sweet variety. Commercial sugary additives are selected according to the brand, for instance, apricot, blackurrant, mandarin, peaches, strawberry, raspberry, black cherry and pineapple (Robinson and Tamine, 42).
Fourthly, the milk is incubated at regulated temperatures of about 15-20°C. Low temperatures prevent proliferation of harmful bacteria. Packaging process comes next after draining the milk from the chamber through pipe channels to the packaging machine. Yoghurt is ready for supplying.
In conclusion, the process of yoghurt manufacturing is a very sensitive area both to the Dairy Cream International and the health of our customers. Understanding the hygiene and other necessary conditions needed at the plant will assist the management team in the efficient running of the business.
Interview: Sarah Raymond, Process Manager Bret and Harriet Foods International. P. O Box 766622, London
Robinson, K. R., & Tamine A. Y. Yoghurt science and technology. Cambridge, England: Woodhead Publishing Ltd, 1999. Print.
Smit, G. Dairy Processing: improving quality. Cambridge, England: Woodhead Publishing Ltd, 2003. Print.
Tamine, A. Y. Fermented milks. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Sciences Ltd, 2006. Print.
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