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Fortification of cheese with vitamin D₃ using dairy protein emulsions as delivery systems

Tippetts, M., Martini, S., Brothersen, C., McMahon, D.J.
Journal of dairy science 2012 v.95 no.9 pp. 4768-4774
Cheddar cheese, calcium caseinate, cheesemaking, cholecalciferol, dried skim milk, emulsifiers, emulsions, fortified foods, manufacturing, milk curds, oils, skim milk, sodium caseinate, whey protein
Vitamin D is an essential vitamin that is synthesized when the body is exposed to sunlight or after the consumption of fortified foods and supplements. The purpose of this research was to increase the retention of vitamin D₃ in Cheddar cheese by incorporating it as part of an oil-in-water emulsion using a milk protein emulsifier to obtain a fortification level of 280 IU/serving. Four oil-in-water vitamin D emulsions were made using sodium caseinate, calcium caseinate, nonfat dry milk (NDM), or whey protein. These emulsions were used to fortify milk, and the retention of vitamin D₃ in cheese curd in a model cheesemaking system was calculated. A nonemulsified vitamin D₃ oil was used as a control to fortify milk. Significantly more vitamin D₃ was retained in the curd when using the emulsified vitamin D₃ than the nonemulsified vitamin D₃ oil (control). No significant differences were observed in the retention of vitamin D₃ when emulsions were formulated with different emulsifiers. Mean vitamin D₃ retention in the model system cheese curd was 96% when the emulsions were added to either whole or skim milk compared with using the nonemulsified oil, which gave mean retentions of only 71% and 64% when added to whole and skim milk, respectively. A similar improvement in retention was achieved when cheese was made from whole and reduced-fat milk using standard manufacturing procedures on a small scale. When sufficient vitamin D₃ was added to produce cheese containing a target level of approximately 280 IU per 28-g serving, retention was greater when the vitamin D₃ was emulsified with NDM than when using nonemulsified vitamin D₃ oil. Only 58±3% of the nonemulsified vitamin D₃ oil was retained in full-fat Cheddar cheese, whereas 78±8% and 74±1% were retained when using the vitamin D₃ emulsion in full-fat and reduced-fat Cheddar cheese, respectively.