FINLAND – ColloidTek Company, a Finland-based technology company, has developed a liquid fingerprint technology that will address the common problem of valuable dairy products being washed out together with waste in dairy processing plants.

The rising cost of milk production and the increased global pressure to reduce carbon dioxide emissions are making the European dairy sector players become even more vigilant to reduce milk losses.

Players in the sector have been complaining of high production costs as well as low returns. In a span of two years, the cost of raw milk has increased by 64% in Europe and significantly more in other regions.

To reduce milk losses is crucial as in Europe alone there exist about 12,000 milk processing sites that collectively handle about 161 million tonnes of milk as of 2021.

The collective milk loss from this region alone has the capacity to have dire negative impacts on the sustainability goals of the world as a whole.

So as to minimize these losses, which can occur between any of the milk processing procedures, it is essential to know when exactly during any of the procedures is a leak likely to occur.

If flow rate timings or other sensors and process parameters are not set correctly, valuable liquid products could be washed out together with waste.

Arresting milk wastage at source

Usually, product losses in the milk processing procedures are noticed when there is an excess of organic material in the effluent.

ColloidTek has come up with a technology that will supervise all draining points in milk machines in real-time and monitor all liquids in the pipes to show exactly where leakage may originate from.

This will offer an easy way to optimise production and cut product losses.

According to Mikko Tielinen, Head of Sales at ColloidTek, as several types of traditional sensors are needed to detect different types of liquids, such as whey, cream and cleaning chemicals, the optimisation systems become complicated and expensive to manage.

He says that the current solutions have proved inefficient to address the problem.

“As our technology can supervise all the draining points in real-time, it can keep track of the liquids in the pipes and show exactly where the leakage is,” Tielinen said.

“This makes it possible to address the problem at the point of origin, saving huge amounts of milk and money.”

In addition to directly improving the profitability of a dairy plant, reducing milk waste also lowers the cost of wastewater treatment and helps dairy facilities to achieve their environmental goals.

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