Cheese Applications

Cheese – App Note

Cheese manufacturing involves several processing steps that need precise control of incoming ingredients, time, temperature, and rennet addition and coagulation to create consistent, high quality products. Using online near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy to measure critical chemical parameters such as protein, moisture, and fat can improve process controls to help cheese manufacturers increase efficiency and reduce waste by providing real-time quality data. tec5USA offers NIR spectrometers with 3-A certified probes for liquid immersion measurements as well as Distance Measurement Heads for over belt cheese measurements. Implementing online NIR data can bring several benefits to automate cheese manufacturing, including faster feedback and decision making compared to offline, laboratory data, and improve product quality by automatically adjusting closed loop process controls.

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tec5USA NIR spectrometers

As labor shortages continue to impede business goals many companies are strengthening every aspect of operations, especially automation improvements. Using online NIR to measure quality components such as protein, fat, moisture, and more can be communicated to industrial control systems, such as PLC, DCS, and SCADA systems to automate closed loop process controls. For example, milk standardization is adjusting fat and protein to achieve a uniform and reliable product and account for incoming milk quality variation. The ratio of protein and fat is critical in the cheese making process and tec5USA’s online NIR system can measure incoming milk fat and protein, then automatically adjust tank sources to the optimal fat content. Installing 3-A certified immersion probes from tec5USA allows rapid measurement time and maintain the highest standards for CIP and SIP needed in the dairy industry.

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tec5USA’s Distance Measurement Head

A chemometric calibration model for protein, fat, and moisture was developed using semi-soft cheese samples measured with tec5USA’s Distance Measurement Head. Spectra from 950-2150 nm were taken from approximately 100 cheese samples. The cheese blocks were measured as is without any sample preparation to mimic online sample presentation. Spectral residual augmented classical least squares was used to develop the calibration. This calibration model results are shown in Table 1 with accurate predictions and correlations for protein, fat, and moisture. The cost per measurement using online NIR is more cost effective (less than a penny per measurement) and faster (milliseconds to seconds) compared to laboratory wet chemistry methods.

In conclusion, this shows the tec5USA Distance Measurement Head uses NIR spectroscopy to quantify protein fat, and moisture in cheese with high accuracy. The data can be used for real-time process adjustments to optimize product quality, reduce laboratory labor, improve yields by reducing rework, and maintain product within specifications. tec5USA’s true process software is designed to connect with industrial process control interfaces and improve cost savings. Contact us to discuss online NIR spectroscopy for your process.

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    Frequently Asked Questions at tec5USA

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    Raman spectroscopy is a technique which is used for several markets. These industries include Oil and Gas, Pharmacology, Biotechnology, Petrochemistry and many others. Due to the high selectivity of Raman spectroscopy, it is a powerful tool for many applications including, hydrocarbon analysis, bioreactor protein monitoring, crystallization monitoring, API concentration, polymer identification, surfactant analysis, natural gas components and several others....

    Typical applications include white light interference for thin film analysis, UV absorption of proteins for quantitative analysis, colorimetry, impurity detection in water, cleaning validation for API manufacturing, polymerization inhibitor monitoring, electroplating bath monitoring....

    NIR spectroscopy is utilized across a variety of industries for qualitative and quantitative product analysis. Typical industries include Chemistry, Pharmacology, Food Feed & Beverage, Agriculture, and others. NIR spectroscopy is well suited for species containing C-H, N-H & O-H bonds, making it a wide-range technology for a variety of applications such as moisture, fat, oil, alcohol, APIs, polymers, etc....

    Spectroscopy is the study of the interaction of light with matter. Light covers a broad range of the electromagnetic spectrum from high energy ultra violet (UV) photons to the near infrared (NIR), with the visible spectrum that we can see being in between. These different portions of the spectrum are important because they interact with matter in different ways. In the UV, these photons have high energy and therefore can induce electronic transitions, while the NIR photons can cause molecules to vibrate at unique frequencies. The way that we measure where compounds absorb light is by taking a spectrum, which is a graph showing the transmission of light as a function of the wavelength. All compounds have a unique absorption spectrum which can be used to identify the chemical composition of samples....

    The spectroscopic methodology is determined by which parameters are important to monitor during a process. For example, if you want to monitor protein concentration in a bioreactor, in which the biosynthesis takes place in an aqueous medium, then you likely would want to use Raman spectroscopy for the application, as water does not contribute to the Raman signal. Alternatively, if moisture content is important, water has very strong absorption in the NIR due to several vibrational and combination modes that can be monitored; water is transparent in the UV and visible spectral region. Understanding which chemical is important as there could be various factors that influence the choice of methodology....


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