According to market reports the Whey protein and lactose markets will witness a robust expansion by 2027. Whey protein and lactose are important food supplements that are commonly concentrated and preserved as powder.
Whey is a by-product of cheese and casein production. It is rich in food protein and valuable nutrients and is, therefore, a valuable ingredient in infant formula, sports and medical nutrition, soups, bakery products, salad dressings and beverages, as well as food and animal feed. From a mere by-product, whey has become a key strategic resource in the dairy market.
This is typically done using Ultrafiltration (UF), Reverse osmosis (RO) or diafiltration. In whey processing, whey protein is separated by UF as a retentate and lactose as the permeate. Then, both products are concentrated by evaporation. The common end products are Whey Powder (WP), Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC), Lactose, Demineralized Whey Powder (DWP) and permeate powder
To manage this new demand the dairy industry needs options to make whey processing more efficient, reduce waste loss and standardize the final product quality.
In-line whey protein and lactose concentration measurement in evaporation
Westech's Vaisala K-PATENTS® Sanitary refractometer is an ideal solution for comprehensive process control by:
- Controlling the correct feed product concentration
- Controlling and adjusting concentration levels after the ultrafiltration, and at the evaporator inlet
- Measures the dry matter concentration evaporator outlet to optimize and save energy consumption
- Ensures the correct feed product concentration is arriving at the spray dryer or crystallizer
- Monitors the lactose solution supersaturation in order to determine the exact seeding point
- Eliminates rework and product waste by automizing lactose seeding
- Increasing throughput by controlling permeate and retentate solids content
- ensure high product quality by feeding correct product concentration to the spray dryer