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Source: Bulletin of IDF No. 301, 1995.

ture of butter. This happens in churning of cream, and, as a result, milkfat is concentrated in the product. Butter contains 80% milkfat (typically 80-81%), 17% moisture, 1% carbohydrates and protein, and 1.2-1.5% sodium chloride (with no salt, the milkfat increases to 82-83%). The pH of sweet cream butter (unfermented) is about 6.4-6.5. Many countries allow sodium chloride and lactic cultures as the only nonmilk additives in butter (Milner, 1995). Some countries allow neutralization of cream and addition of natural coloring agents to adjust for seasonal variation in colorant in the cream (e.g., annato, carotene, and turmeric).

There are two kinds of butter: sweet cream, which may or may not be salted, and ripened-cream butter. In ripened cream butter, citrate in cream is fermented by certain lactic acid bacteria to produce acetoin and diacetyl; the latter imparts a characteristic flavor to the product. Ripened-cream butters are more popular in Europe, whereas unripened or sweet-cream butter is preferred in the United States, Ireland, England, Australia, and New Zealand (Adams and Moss, 1995).

When whey produced during cheese making is passed through a separator, the result is whey cream. Whey cream is processed into butter, usually as a blend with sweet cream. Butter from a <20% whey cream and sweet cream blend may be indistinguishable from that made from 100% sweet cream. Butter is also manufactured from neutralized or nonneutralized whey cream, usually as a blend with sweet cream.

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