The influence of milk quality and composition on goat milk suitability for cheese production
Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies, Faculty of Food Technology, Department of Food Technology, Riga Street 22, LV-3004, Jelgava, Latvia
The goat milk production sector is growing in Latvia, therefore detailed studies are required to examine goat milk suitability for cheese production. There is still not enough information about the chemical composition and quality of goat milk, and its connection with milk renneting properties. The objective of this study was to analyse the impact of milk composition and quality on goat milk renneting properties. Fat, protein, lactose, urea content, somatic cell count and freezing point were measured by infrared spectroscopy. The curd firmness was analysed by Texture Analyser TA.HD.plus (Stable Micro Systems, UK). In total, 34 samples, including bulk milk samples (n = 3) were analysed. The analysed breeds included the Latvian Native (n = 9), Saanen (n = 14) and milking crosses (closer to Anglo Nubian) (n = 8). The samples were arranged according to the lactation, somatic cell count and breeds. Obtained fat content varied from 1.72 to 4.67%, and the protein content – from 2.93 to 4.57% in individual goat milk samples. The highest fat to protein ratio was established in the Saanen breed goat milk (0.96), but the lowest – in milking crosses’ milk (0.80). The highest somatic cell count was determined in the second lactation goat milk (1421 thous mL-1) and in milking crosses’ goat milk (1027 thous mL-1). The somatic cell count influences curd firmness in cheese, and the highest fat to protein ratio was established in the first group samples with lower somatic cell count.