Small cheesemakers seeking to maximise their earnings should band together to fund central plants to process whey (the by-product of cheesemaking).
This is the view of Terry Pothecary, technical sales executive at whey processing equipment supplier Carlisle Processing Systems.
There is money to be had from the 6% of protein rich solids present in the whey liquid. Properly treated, the solids extracted from whey can be used in place of skimmed milk powder and in other applications.
The problem is, says Pothecary, it takes a lot of liquid to produce a small amount of whey protein concentrate. Anything less than 10,000 litres a day is unlikely to make for a successful enterprise, he says. He believes small businesses should look at joint ventures. "We are getting more and more interest from groups of cheesemakers that are getting together to build a central process plant. This way it is cost-effective," he says.
Carlisle Processing Systems has the technology and know-how to help. It has just supplied the filtration, concentration and drying technology for one of the world's largest milk powder drying systems for Fonterra in New Zealand.
Contact: Carlisle Processing Systems, Tel: 01935 818800