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Europe: Arla Foods Ingredients offers solution for recombined cheese

Arla Foods Ingredients has developed a range of next-generation ‘recombining’ solutions for dairy companies to produce high quality specialty cheeses without fresh milk.

The solutions help companies create recombined white, processed and cream cheeses based on Nutrilac functional milk proteins, water and fat – usually butterfat or anhydrous milk fat (AMF).

They work on existing recombining machinery and generate no whey side-stream, maximizing output and reducing waste.

Recombined dairy products are particularly common in parts of the world where there is limited or no access to fresh milk.

This is often the case in regions such as Latin America, Africa, Southeast Asia, China and Russia.

Recombined liquid milk and simple yogurt made from rehydrated milk powder are already widely manufactured.

However, recombined specialty cheeses have traditionally proved more complex and challenging to produce.

“Shoppers in emerging markets are now seeking out more sophisticated dairy products, such as specialty cheeses, bringing their tastes more into line with western consumers,” says category manager Claus Andersen.

“To meet this demand without access to fresh milk is not an easy job. But the Nutrilac recombined cheese concept means it’s possible to produce the high quality and nourishing specialty cheeses that consumers in these markets want – cheeses that are as good as if they were made with fresh milk.”

Recombined dairy products are also expected to increase in importance in the European Union when milk quotas are abolished on 1 April 2015.

“After the abolition of quotas there will be no restrictions on how much milk member states can produce, which almost certainly means there will be a significant fresh milk surplus,” says Andersen. “Much of this surplus will be converted into dairy ingredients, some of which will be sold into markets outside of Europe where it will be used to produce recombined dairy products.”

The company’s recombined cheese concept offers more than 20 flexible solutions with variable cost-in-use, capable of producing cheeses of different quality tiers.

“Depending on the market in question and the spending power of the consumers living there, we can create recombined cheeses with three different quality profiles: good, better and best,” says Claus.