Spray dryer solutions for milk lactoferrin processing

Thursday, 14 January, 2021 | Supplied by: GEA Australia


Lactoferrin is an essential functional ingredient used by global food manufacturers for infant formula and other nutritional products. 

Commercial production of lactoferrin involves the precisely controlled extraction and purification of the protein from raw materials such as skim milk, cheese whey and ‘native’ whey — whey produced directly from skim milk via membrane filtration. The lactoferrin molecule is heat sensitive and its functionality is significantly reduced if the protein is denatured. Therefore, careful pasteurisation of the raw material is essential and is carried out in combination with milk processing using bacteria removal separators (BRS) or microfiltration.

Morinaga Milk Group is claimed to be the largest producer of lactoferrin globally and one of the first to produce lactoferrin commercially. The company aims to increase the sale of its own lactoferrin-related products by more than doubling production capacity to approximately 170 tons of lactoferrin per year at its MILEI factory in Leutkirch, Germany.

MILEI, the German daughter company of Japan’s Morinaga Milk Group, has selected GEA spray dryer solutions for the newly extended Leutkirch production plant.

The GEA technology can extract and turn several milk fractions into high-value products that boost the nutritional value of many different foods and supplements. GEA designs plants and process steps that help to maximise powder yield, hygiene and plant operability. GEA expertise covers multiple steps in the process, including the use of CEE high-efficiency cyclones for dust separation.

Specialists at the GEA Test Centre in Denmark worked with MILEI to configure the key drying steps and provided samples for activity studies, which helped determine the optimum spray drying conditions for producing a lactoferrin powder with the desired characteristics.

GEA lactoferrin powder test facilities.

From here, MILEI will produce lactoferrin, whey protein concentrate, lactose and other dairy ingredients, primarily for European and Asian markets with the help of GEA technology.

The new lactoferrin production line is planned to be operational in 2021.

Online: www.gea.com
Phone: 03 8877 9999
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