Milk Products: Cheese, Yoghurt, Milk, Butter

Milk Products

Analysis of baby foods, cheese and further milk products

In Switzerland, the testing of these products is regulated by the Swiss Food Law (Lebensmittelgesetz, LMG), the Swiss Ordinance on Foreign Substances and Ingredients in Food Products (Fremd- und Inhaltsstoffverordnung, FIV) and the Ordinance on Additives (Zusatzstoffverordnung). Products intended for export into the EU must comply with the corresponding national regulations of the target market. 

Are you looking for an accredited Swiss contract laboratory to investigate your products? We can offer an extremely comprehensive range of analyses regarding the investigation of milk products, with particular emphasis on baby foods and cheeses. Thanks to our collaboration with a network of accredited and specialised UFAG partner laboratories, it is also possible to analyse the rarely offered parameters that are, as a result of country specific legislation, becoming increasingly necessary when exporting milk products to non-European countries.

Take advantage of the UFAG customer service in which, after the sample has been sent off, you will receive the test report including all parameters from the same source and you have just ONE contact person for ALL of your enquiries. UFAG LABORATORIEN will co-ordinate the various investigations for you and we will ensure you receive the test reports promptly. Attached is a selection of the diverse analysis parameters which we at UFAG LABORATORIEN can currently offer you in the area of milk products.

Are you looking for an analysis method that you cannot find in our specifications? Our portfolio of analyses methods is under continual consideration and is expanded to include current requests.

 

We will be happy to advise you.

Read on here for more information or contact us.


Quality-relevant factors

The focus of quality testing in the laboratory is dependent on the product and target groups. The legal requirements here are varied. However, they are all there to protect the consumer and society. The following analyses are of particular importance here:

Analysis of baby foods

All vitamins and all minerals

Extraction of vitamins
Extraction of vitamins

Vitamins and minerals are essential for the development of a baby. Serious consequences for the health of the baby can appear in the event of overdoses or insufficient dosing. 

Examples of illnesses caused by vitamin deficiencies are rickets (with a deficiency of vitamin D) or scurvy (with a deficiency of vitamin C). But overdoses of vitamins, particularly of fat-soluble vitamins can lead to illnesses (Hypervitaminosis) as these vitamins are stored in the body.

Therefore, whether the dosages in processed baby foods conform to the specifications is monitored.

Peroxide value and hexanal

These are parameters which can be used for assessment regarding the fat degradation (rancidity) in milk products after production and during storage. For determination of the peroxide value, the fat must be isolated from the baby food beforehand, whereby special extraction techniques must be used (method according to Pont-Wheeler or Harland). The peroxide value enables the quantification of the primary and still odourless fat oxidation products while hexanal is used an an indicator for the odour-intensive end products.

Amino acids

Proteins consist of a variety of amino acids. The so-called essential amino acids, that can not be produced themselves in the human body, are particularly important. Some of the essential amino acids are: Isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine, and for infants, additionally arginine and histidine. Particular emphasis should be placed here on all of the 10 amino acids essential for babies.

Investigation for pesticides in baby foods

Analysing pesticides in baby food using the gas chromatograph
Analysing pesticides in baby food using the gas chromatograph

As a result of their low body weight, babies are particularly sensitive to pollutants and contaminants such as pesticides. Therefore, in both the Swiss and the EU legislation, many pesticides and their metabolites are regulated with a particularly low content limit of less than 0.01 mg/kg (e.g. fipronil, fentin, fensulfothion, Demeton-S-methyl, ethoprophos, cadusafos etc.). This requires separate sensitive analysis techniques which we at UFAG LABORATORIEN can offer in the form of the “Multi-method for baby food pesticides”.

Melamine and cyanuric acid

Evidence of falsifications with melamine to increase the content of protein. Cyanuric acid is a degradation product of melamine that can occur in acids.

Prebiotic dietary fibres

The addition of prebiotic dietary fibres (e.g. galacto-oligosaccharides and inulin) to baby foods promotes the natural increase in the number of bifidobacteria in the intestinal flora of bottle-fed infants. They ensure good digestion and support an intact immune defence. Galacto-oligosaccharides and inulin each require separate analysis methods because they are not detected together in the Swiss Book of Foodstuffs method for total dietary fibre.

Lactoferrin

Lactoferrin is a strongly anti-viral and anti-bacterial protein that promotes the resistance of babies to pathogenic agents.

Nucleotides

Nucleotides are important for improving the functioning of the immune systems and support the cognitive development of babies.

Allergens

Allergens such as milk protein (both casein and beta-lactoglobulin) in hypoallergenic special baby foods.

Analysis of Cheese

Authenticity testing and determination of falsifications

The identification of imitation cheeses can for example be carried out by analysing the distribution of fatty acids, determination of the proportion of cow milk in buffalo mozzarella using SDS-PAGE, or the detection of cow milk in goat’s cheese by monitoring the content of beta carotene.

Quantification of Contaminants and Pollutants

Analytical testing of a number of different types of cheese
Analytical testing of a number of different types of cheese

Testing for compliance with the statutory limit values and the evaluation of parameters in accordance with the Swiss Foreign Substances and Ingredients Ordinance as well as with the corresponding EU legislation can be carried out (e.g. dioxins and dioxin like PCBs, Ballschmiter PCBs, pesticides, bacterial toxins such as staphylococcus enterotoxins and emetic and diarrheal Bacillus cereus toxins).

Detection of additives

Testing of the use of additives and compliance with the regulations of the Swiss Ordinance on Additives can be monitored: Preservatives (e.g. nisin, natamycine/pimaricin, lysozyme, sorbic acid, propionic acid), additives to prevent late blowing (potassium nitrate and sodium nitrate) etc.

Multi-methods biogenic amines

Biogenic amines contribute to the formation of aromas in cheeses and also serve as evidence of quality defects. In an inexpensive multi-method using HPLC, the following parameters can be verified: Histamine, cadaverine, putrescine, spermidine, spermine, tyramine, agmatine, phenylethylamine and tryptamine).

Free radical carboxylic acids

This analysis is performed to find the cause of quality defects in cheeses. The sensorily perceived attribute of “rancidness” can be be classified using this method as either lipolysis or contamination with butyric acid.

Analysis of All Types of Milk Products: Yoghurt, Milk Powder, Milk Drinks etc.

Lactose in lactose-free products

Foodstuffs such as ice cream are also milk products and should be tested.
Foodstuffs such as ice cream are also milk products and should be tested.

For the detection of lactose in lactose-free milk products, an extremely sensitive ion chromatographic method with amperometric detection (IC-PAD) can be used. Because the individual ingredients of the sample must be separated to do this, the galactose that occur in lactose degradation do not influence the measurement, in contrast to the enzymatic method.


The limit of determination for the IC-PAD method is a maximum of 10 mg/100g and is, as a result, a minimum of a factor of 10 underneath the content limit for lactose in lactose-free products according to the Ordinance of the Swiss Federal Department of Home Affairs (EDI) on Special Foodstuffs.

Quaternary ammonium compounds (QACs)

QACs get into foodstuffs mostly from residues and transportation from disinfectants used for the cleaning of facilities. One possible example of this is freshly cleaned conveyor belts on which milk products such as cheese are sometimes transported. QACs could already be contained in the milk and get into the end product by this method. Quaternary ammonium compounds are used particularly for teat disinfection and due to their tendency to adhere to surfaces, are often transmitted from these surfaces into milk. Using a HPLC-MS/MS multi-method, the contents of benzalkonium chlorides BAC-10, BAC-12, BAC-14 and BAC-16 as well as didecyldimethylammonium chloride (DDAC-10) can be analysed and legally assessed.

2-Cyanoguanidine (DCD)

DCD is a biodegradable chemical used in pastures to reduce the nitrate concentration of the soils and in the recent past has been detected in milk powder from New Zealand. Using a HPLC-MS/MS method, this compound can be detected at sensitive levels as a contamination in milk products. There are no current legal regulations at the moment.

Hydrocarbons

Hydrocarbons can get into milk products from contaminated fat or from migration from foodstuff packaging. The principle of minimisation applies here, i.e. process improvements should be implemented to strive towards the lowest possible and technologically unavoidable content. In the Swiss legislature, there is a tolerance value of (10 mg/kg) only for thick-skinned fruits.

Caseinomacropeptide

Caseinomacropeptide serves the purpose of identifying the use of rennet whey in milk proteins and can be detected using HPLC/UV analyses.

Casein and whey protein composition

Using a combination of wet chemical and molecular-biological methods as well as HPLC investigations, the content of casein and whey proteins in milk products can be determined (e.g.: native alpha-Lactalbumin and beta-Lactoglobulin, bovine serum albumin, bovine total immunoglobulin G etc.)

Measurement of enzyme activities

E.g. alkaline phosphatase, lipase, peroxidase, protease and lipoxygenase



Reasons for outsourcing

  • Simple access to a great wealth of experience
  • Cost controlling: No follow-up costs for equipment, obtaining qualifications or training courses
  • Being free from routine work and the opportunity to focus on core tasks
  • Capacity peaks can be overcome
  • Independent results from an accredited contract laboratory
  • Receive the test report with all parameters from one source
  • Having ONE contact person for ALL questions.
  • We will co-ordinate the various investigations for you and ensure that you receive the test reports promptly.

Do you require additional information?

Please read the unabridged version in our technical article (see the right-hand column) or ask for advice from our customer services.


Our services in detail:

Milk products: Milk, cheese, butter, quark
Milk products: Milk, cheese, butter, quark

contact person

sales for foodstuffs

Jörg Freudenberger State Certified Graduate Food Chemist

Tel. +41 58 434 42 00 Fax +41 58 434 42 01 service@ufag-laboratorien.ch

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