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THE SHIFT OF YOGURT ACID WHEY FROM WASTE PRODUCT TO VALUABLE INGREDIENT ACROSS VALUE ADDED FOOD PRODUCT CATEGORIES

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Abstract

Introduction: Consumers are increasingly aware of the significance of the food choices they make, from a nutritional, environmental and social standpoint. The ingredient list, nutrition label, price of the items and other claims on food packaging are all important aspects of food choices that can be influenced by the use novel ingredients. Yogurt Acid Whey (YAW) is produced in surplus as a by-product of the booming Greek-style yogurt industry. Its chemical composition hinders its processability and its high biological oxygen demand (BOD) make its disposal in large quantities threatening to the environment. It is an abundant and cost-effective resource available near value added product manufacturers. Compared to other by-products of the dairy industry integrated within the food system (buttermilk, skim milk, etc.), YAW nutrients are neither re-introduced for humans as a dairy product, nor as processed ingredients for the manufacture of other food products. Focused efforts are therefore warranted for the improvement of the management of the increasing volumes of YAW compared to buttermilk (causing no economic loss or environmental damage at current and expected production volumes). Methods and results part 1: The YAW pilot-product formulated in the first part of this study (a dairy-based dip containing >60% YAW) performed as well as successful commercial samples in sensory studies, implying that YAW is a suitable ingredient to be used by manufacturers in significant proportions in commercial formulations. Additionally, the “Salsa con queso dipping sauce” made with YAW had a similar or better nutritional profile than the commercial controls. Concluding on the viability of using YAW ¬¬¬¬as a majority ingredient in sauces dressings and dips. A Ranch dressing formula was developed using buttermilk, which was then replaced with YAW at varied concentrations to assess the boundaries of its utilization and corresponding effects on nutrition and shelf-life, both of which were positive. We demonstrate that 15-17 ºBrix YAW leads to on-par consumer acceptability with buttermilk Ranch dressing. Yogurt Acid Whey was therefore shown to be a suitable ingredient in the sauces, dressings and dips category, provided selection of appropriate host products and minor processing adaptations. Methods and results part 2: The suitability of acid whey uptake as a main ingredient in sauces and dip products advocates for further assessing the suitability of acid whey uptake in other product categories. The second part of this study aimed to extend its scope of application to understand the benefits and challenges of using YAW as an ingredient in the baked goods category. Baked products seem to be suitable as they often call for liquids (milk, buttermilk or water) that may be readily replaced by YAW. Using Pancakes (dairy-based, chemically leavened, sweet, high water content batter, surface baked) and Pizza crust (water-based, fermented /yeast leavened, savory, low water content dough, oven baked) as model products, we showed favorable use of YAW with a by-weight replacement of water, with shelf life benefits, cost reduction and minor flavor challenges. Significance: The work performed in the context of this thesis leads to the conclusion that YAW in its minimally processed form is a suitable ingredient as major component in the formulation of products in several value-added food products categories. Formulating products using YAW is an ecological, industrially feasible and commercially viable initiative to support the sustainable growth of the Greek-style yogurt production.

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2019-05-30

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Food science; product development; sensory science; Acid Whey; Greek yogurt; sustainability

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Committee Chair

Padilla-Zakour, Olga I.

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Dando, Robin

Degree Discipline

Food Science and Technology

Degree Name

M.S., Food Science and Technology

Degree Level

Master of Science

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Government Document

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dissertation or thesis

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