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Texture Analysis of different Cheese Types

Cheese constitutes the largest proportion of overall volumes of production in the dairy sector. Its basic constituents are protein, fat, and moisture which comprise more than 80% mass and directly affected the textural and functional properties of cheese. The fat and moisture content of the cheese needs to be at a specific limit while manufacturing specific variants of cheese including low fat and full-fat cheese. Additionally, cheese texture can get influenced by different processing conditions heating temperature, salting, stretching, and ripening, which cause variations in its chemical composition. Storage temperature is another factor that can affect cheese quality. Manufacturers employ texture analysers for the development of low-fat cheese where the manufacturers wishes to mimic the texture profile of its full-fat counterparts.

A texture analyser simulates various possible interactions with cheese such as compression, extrusion, shear, tension, penetration, bend and break. These interactions represent the different ways with which a consumer can interact with a cheese, such as chewing, biting, squeezing, slicing, or grating. A cheese sample is placed on the analyser test bench and arm of the texture analyzer contains the loadcell, to which a probe or fixture is attached. The arm then in either an up or down direction at a defined rate of speed in order to compress or extend the cheese sample. Texture analysis of various kinds of cheese including cheddar, cream cheese, mozzarella, etc can be done by fitting the appropriate probe on to the load cell. Depending on the type of cheese to test, an appropriate probe/fixture is selected.