Methods of Standardizing
There are three methods of standardizing milk, namely:
- Addition of concentrated non-fat milk solids (i.e., skim milk powder or condensed skim).
- Addition of skim milk.
- Removal of cream.
These methods are based on the assumption that the milk has a high fat content relative to the protein content. This is normally the case, so that cows' milk usually has excess fat over that required to produce a legal cheese. The exceptions are high fat cheese such as cream cheese or double cream blue cheese.
It is not always economical to standardize milk. The cheese maker must compare the costs of standardizing with the extra yield of cheese or cream. Many cheese makers simplistically assume that all they have to do is standardize milk to meet the official composition standards. But the objective of standardization is to maximize the total return from all milk components while meeting regulations and without compromising quality. If the value of butter fat is low relative to protein, it is more economical to sell the fat as cheese rather than as cream provided that the extra fat can be retained in the cheese without compromising quality.