Whey, derived from cheese and casein production, is one of the most suitable by-products for food production. Almost without exception, whey-processing technologies result in a waste by-product - usually lactose and mineral-rich permeate in large volumes. Science and technology advances, particularly over the past 10 years, have led to a greater understanding of lactose behavior, simple and efficient approaches to its hydrolysis or its isolation at commercial-scale, and improved overall cost-effectiveness in the processing of whey solids. No whey utilization strategy will succeed without suitable attention being paid to lactose, as this component represents >75% of whey solids (Smithers, 2008).
The project partners, R&D company the Center of Food and Fermentation Technologies (Estonia) together with Smiltenes Piens (Latvia) as the third-largest cheese producer in Latvia together developed the production technology of syrup from the lactose solution separated from the whey. As a result, the glucose-galactose syrup is improved so that it can now be applied for the production of various baked and confectionery goods and replace sugar, as well, it can be used to prepare ice-cream and for soft drinks production.
Project materials and product