GEA builds one of the largest automated mozzarella cheese production  plants in India

Technology group GEA, pioneer in dairy and food processing technology, has recently concluded an order for one of the largest automated cheese plants in India. The customer, Milky Mist Dairy Foods Private Limited, is one of the leading private dairies in Southern India. Headquartered in Erode, Tamil Nadu, Milky Mist has a diverse portfolio of value-added milk products including cheese, paneer, yoghurt, flavored yoghurt and ghee. This is the second order in a row from Milky Mist to GEA in India; the first one being a complete greenfield project for processing 0.6 million liter of milk and 40 tons of whey powder per day was successfully completed by GEA in April 2018.

GEA supplied a fully automatic, complete mozzarella/pizza cheese line along with CIP (cleaning in place) system to produce cheese at two metric tons per hour (2mt/hr). The state-of-the-art equipment and innovative technologies from cheese vats, maturation system, stretching molding machine to brining vats enhance product quality, yield and energy efficiency in the Milky Mist plant.

Unlike conventional hot water stretching systems, with GEA’s patented continuous steam stretching of curd, the milk does not lose any fat and proteins in whey – resulting in enhanced yield, better fibrous structure for longer stretchabilty and reduced energy consumption by up to 30%. The plant features another patented technology by GEA: The whey drainage and maturation tunnel system for continuous maturation of curd in controlled acidity development, which is first of its kind in India. GEA’s patented anti-sticking surface treatment on machine parts, “Vulcan”, ensures that there are no Teflon particles in the final product – a very important feature in the safe production of high-quality cheese. Furthermore, the plant uses micro filtration for continuous decontamination of the brine bath.

“GEA has already executed another project for us. We appreciate their innovative approach to a specialized product like mozzarella cheese. As we wish to take our products international, we are convinced that we need to adopt technologies which will not only ensure high quality and hygiene standards but also maintain environmental sustainability”, said Mr T. Sathish Kumar, Managing Director of Milky Mist.

“We are offering an environmentally friendly technology for very high quality mozzarella cheese. It is a pleasure to work with clients who want to introduce such high standards which will enable the industry to grow sustainably”, added Suket Gohil, Managing Director of GEA India.

Demand for cheese in India is likely to grow by more than 20% (2015-2020, CAGR – Compound Annual Growth Rate). With changes in food habits and increased demands for fast food and takeaways, India is witnessing more and more inclusion of cheese in daily meals. Given this, the demand for different varieties of cheeses especially pizza and mozzarella cheese is expected to grow.

The plant equipment has been supplied by GEA in Italy. The local GEA experts have more than 40 years of experience in mozzarella cheese production technology. With its expertise to meet every production target, GEA can supply, install and commission complete production plants for soft/fresh, semi-hard and hard cheeses, as well as pasta filata cheese like mozzarella, pizza cheese and ricotta etc.

The Milky Mist plant is one of the largest operational and fully automated pizza cheese lines in India.

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