MINDS @ UW-Madison

Center for Dairy Research Annual Report 1989-1990

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Quinones, Sarah Hundt; Olson, Norman F.; Wendorff, Bill; Johnson, Mark
Center for Dairy Research, University of Wisconsin-Madison
dairy product safety; milkfat research; cheese technology; dairy research
As you will see from this report, in the past year the Center for Dairy Research attained several substantial goals in both our research program and our information and technology transfer activities. Our desire for interdisciplinary research has become a reality with cooperative and complementary projects between scientists within departments, across departmental and college boundaries, and with other U.S. universities and international research organizations. The research reports herein reflect the efforts of researchers in the Center for Dairy Research, Walter V. Price Cheese Research Institute, and the Departments of Food Science, Food Microbiology and Toxicology, Chemical Engineering, Dairy Science, Nutritional Sciences, Agricultural Economics, and Meat and Animal Science, and of researchers at Purdue University, and the University of Nebraska, plus visiting scientists at CDR. Milk component utilization, cheese technology, product and process development, and dairy food safety and quality continue to be areas of emphasis in the Center. Milkfat research encompasses control of milk composition, the fractionation and modification of milkfat, basic research to facilitate use of milkfat as a food ingredient, plus demand analysis to project milkfat usage in the future. Fractionation procedures, unique methods of milkfat modification by interesterification, and characterization of milkfat fractions show promise for enhancing milkfat utilization. Research on whey is more limited in scope, but studies on production of polysaccharides from lactose and isolation of minor whey proteins have prompted interest by industry. Major thrusts of our cheese research program include expanding the market for cheese and improving the flavor and quality of cheese. Basic research to improve the characteristics of low-fat and low-sodium cheeses continues our efforts to increase the range of high-quality cheeses available to the consumer. A multi-project program on enhancing and controlling cheese flavor includes research on characterization of enzymes of potential flavor-producing bacteria, technologies such as spray-drying to provide functional cultures to industry, and evaluation of these cultures in cheese. The Centers program includes an emphasis on maintaining the safety of dairy products. Projects underway investigate methods for the detection of pathogens in dairy products and the effects of environmental conditions on survival of those pathogens. Methods for detecting only virulent strains of Listeria monocytogenes and a rapid assay for a pathogenic Escherichia coli strain are being developed. Impacts of processing technologies on pathogen survival should be directly applicable to the cheese industry. Subpasteurization heat treatments greatly reduced the survival of several pathogens in Cheddar cheese, and the curd-cooking process had similar effects in Pannesan cheese. The Worldwide Information and Technology Exchange Program is a catalyst to our research program and a conduit for information and technology transfer. Our scientist exchange program has contributed directly to research output but, equally as important, has facilitated longer-tenn collaboration with domestic and international laboratories. A mentor program was established to provide input to CDR from experienced dairy researchers. It will be expanded because of its positive impact on our overall research program and on individual researchers. Dairy technology is always evolving which presents challenges and opportunities that CDR is addressing. Our success results from the combined and cooperative efforts of the researchers, the CDR Administrative Program, and WlTEP.
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