Dairy company Arla has begun to offer other producers a licensing package for its patented lactose-free dairy production technology. Previously the technology was only available to other companies in the Arla group in Scandinavia and the UK.
Arla says the filtration method it uses is unique. It separates lactose from milk by mechanical means without having to change the chemical composition. Lactase the enzyme that processes lactose in the digestive tract is then added to the remaining lactose, pre-digesting it to break it down into two monosaccharide components: glucose and galactose. This gives the lactose-free milk the same sweetness as regular milk, according to Arla.
Lactose-free represents an untapped market with 15% of consumers in European countries thought to be lactose intolerant and up to 90% believed to be so in some African and Asian countries. Companies that agree a licence will also have access to Arla's expertise in developing, producing and marketing lactose-free milk and yogurt.
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