Measure Milk – What’s Inside?

Every year around 470 million tons of cow milk are produced in the most important countries of origin. If you poured all of this milk into a cube, it would require an edge length of 769.38 meters to hold this amount. Anton Paar doesn’t do this but our instruments do play a central role in milk processing.

It is not easy to determine the different physical parameters of milk. Milk is a food with a highly complex structure that consists of various different components. Its composition depends on many factors, such as the animal’s breed, age and health, as well as seasonal differences in the feed. Cow milk, for example, is about 87 percent water, about four percent fat and nine percent fat-free dry mass. The two latter components combined are also called “dry substance”. The fat-free dry mass consists of proteins, lactose, minerals and vitamins.

DMA helps measure milk

When quality control operatives measure milk, its complex composition makes this a much harder task than with other liquids. The density of milk changes over time. Many milk producers therefore prefer frequent checks using Anton Paar’s density meters (DMA) instead of a lactometer, as the density meters are easier to operate, more accurate and reliable.

Analysis of milk components

As soon as the raw milk arrives, fresh from the farm, a density meter is used to determine whether water has been added to increase the milk’s volume. Later, during quality control and before filling, the lactose content is checked using a polarimeter, and a refractometer is used to measure the milk’s dry substance. To analyze trace elements in the dairy products, samples are prepared using a microwave digestion system like Multiwave GO.

In this way, products from Anton Paar help manufacturers of dairy products and food companies perform reliable and accurate quality control – liter by liter, day by day.

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