Valorization of cheese whey using microbial fermentations.

Affiliation

Department of Life Sciences, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Via G. Amendola, 2, Pad. Besta, 42122, Reggio Emilia, Italy. [Email]

Abstract

Cheese whey (CW), the liquid resulting from the precipitation and removal of milk casein during cheese-making, and the second cheese whey (SCW) derived from the production of cottage and ricotta cheeses are the main byproducts of dairy industry. The major constituent of CW and SCW is lactose, contributing to the high BOD and COD content. Because of this, CW and SCW are high-polluting agents and their disposal is still a problem for the dairy sector. CW and SCW, however, also consist of lipids, proteins, and minerals, making them useful for production of various compounds. In this paper, microbial processes useful to promote the bioremediation of CW and SCW are discussed, and an overview on the main whey-derived products is provided. Special focus was paid to the production of health-promoting whey drinks, vinegar, and biopolymers, which may be exploited as value-added products in different segments of food and pharmaceutical industries.

Keywords

Bacterial cellulose,Cheese whey,Poly-hydroxyalkanoates,Vinegar,Whey drink,

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