Quarg is a fresh cultured cheese with a mild to lightly acid taste. It is soft, paste-like, and often has a smooth structure, but can also be rather grainy. Similar cheese types are Pate Fraiche, Petit Suisse, Mascarpone, Baker's Cheese and Soft Cheese.
The process usually contains the following steps:
The cheese milk is treated using traditional separation and pasteurisation methods. When this has taken place, the milk is cooled to culturing temperature and culture added and, in some cases, rennet. When the pH is 4.4-4.6, the product is ready for further treatment.
After the culturing, a heating process is applied. In some cases the product is also homogenised, depending on the consistency/structure desired in the final product. Finally, the product is cooled to the temperature required for protein concentration.
The cultured milk is ultrafiltrated to the desired dry matter level, which is 13-45% with 0.1-70% fat in dry matter depending on the cheese type desired. Since a high viscosity is obtained rather quickly in the cultured products, Plate & Frame plants are always used and, frequently, positive pumps are used in the final stage.
The post-treatment of the retentate is similar to that performed during traditional production. The product is cooled and possibly various flavours, fruits, vegetables, stabilisers, or salt added before the product is packed.
Advantages of ultrafiltration
- A high yield (up to 20% extra compared to the traditional method, depending on the type of product)
- Uniform and high quality products
- The process is insensitive to small changes of parameters
- Increased product shelf-life
- Easy-to-change process parameters in order to obtain various structures
- Possible to produce everything from Cream Cheese to Quarg in the same plant
SPX FLOW delivers complete fresh-cultured cheese lines from the reception of milk to product packaging. In addition, complete process know-how is delivered with the plant.
Process Diagram and Benefits
- SPX FLOW's global experience as a supplier of processing technology and equipment for cheese products is a key factor in our ability to deliver cost-effective solutions tailored to individual customer requirements.
- SPX FLOW offers an enormous range of resources to the dairy industry in process engineering, equipment manufacturing, project management - for both large and small projects - and world-class development facilities
- When usingour ultrafiltration systems, increased yields, reduced labour requirements and longer shelf-life are possible, compared to traditional processes.
- SPX FLOW's range of product recovery and waste reduction processes are designed to reduce effluent costs and minimise loss of valuable product. These processes include:
- Flotation plant for pre-treatment of dairy effluent
- Special clean-in-place (CIP) software programs to minimise drainage and water usage
- Membrane concentration systems for recovery of product/water mixes for recycling or sale
- Optimisation of plant layout at the design stage - i.e. built-in waste reduction
- Automation software and instrumentation for accurate monitoring and control