Using HYBRID Trac System for Fast and Accurate Analysis of Wet and Dry Dairy Products

Manufacturing organizations often face a challenge to streamline costs while producing high quality products, and in the production of dairy products there is no exception. As a result, a fast and precise solution is needed to adjust product composition. This article describes the application of CEM’s HYBRID Trac system to the wide range of products that are tested on a daily basis.

Testing of Wet and Dry Products


Figure 1. HYBRID Trac

The new HYBRID Trac system (Figure 1) designed by CEM is an advanced solution that can be used to test both wet and dry products for moisture, solids and butterfat. In addition to the surface, the whole sample is examined, providing improved precision in comparison with other rapid methods.

In a milk powder facility, the incoming milk is separated, processed, dried, and then finally retrieved as milk powder, among other products. Although this process sounds simple, it can be quite complicated, because throughout the process each product must be tested, assessed and adjusted prior to moving to the next step. In order to ensure a high quality product, testing must be done quickly and accurately to determine what adjustments, if any, are required.

Process Involved in Dairy Production

Usually, testing can be performed through wet chemistry techniques or other parts of equipment that are designed to be more fast and precise. However, the same system cannot be used to tests incoming fluid milk and the final dried product. Here, specialized instruments are needed to deal with wet and dry products.

At present, the facility receives the incoming milk and the butterfat and solid content is ascertained by means of a test for wet samples. The milk is then shifted to a holding tank, combined with other milk samples, and finally cooled. This combined milk can even be tested for overall butterfat and solids content before separating it into skimmed milk and cream. The separated milk is again mixed and adjusted to produce the desired product i.e. skim milk powder, whole milk powder, buttermilk powder, powdered infant formula, etc. Then, by means of a test for wet samples, the butterfat and solids content is ascertained prior to drying. After the drying process is over, a test for dry samples is utilized to measure the butterfat and solids content. Any changes to increase solubility are carried out and the final product is retested before it is shipped.

HYBRID Trac System

Now, all these complex tests can be carried out using a single system. The HYBRID Trac is designed to test the butterfat and solids content of separated cream, fluid milk, final dried powder and other liquid products in just 2 minutes. Since the HYBRID Trac is capable of measuring the entire sample, the results are very precise and can easily be utilized to modify the process. Precise results ensure that the best quality product is produced in a cost-effective way. For instance, changes can be made quickly to dry the sample further or to decrease or increase the amount of butterfat in the sample. Maintaining a tighter specification range directly results in huge cost savings. The tables below show the percentage of solids and butterfat.

Table 1. Incoming Milk

Reference: 11.79% Solids, 3.02% Butterfat
Sample Solids Butterfat
1 11.77 2.99
2 11.78 2.98
3 11.80 2.97
4 11.81 2.98
5 11.77 2.96
6 11.79 3.01
7 11.79 3.01
8 11.78 3.01
9 11.78 2.99
10 11.79 3.01
Average 11.79 2.99
Stdev 0.013 0.019
Error 0.00 0.03

Table 2. Powdered Milk

Reference: 2.81% Moisture, 27.66% Butterfat
Sample Moisture Butterfat
1 2.82 27.66
2 2.80 27.66
3 2.81 27.63
4 2.81 27.68
5 2.81 27.71
6 2.79 27.69
7 2.80 27.70
8 2.83 27.69
9 2.80 27.72
10 2.81 2.66
Average 2.81 27.68
Stdev 0.011 0.027
Error 0.00 0.02

Table 3. Heavy Cream

Reference: 45.57% Solids, 39.93% Butterfat
Sample Solids Butterfat
1 45.59 39.83
2 45.61 39.95
3 45.53 40.01
4 45.63 39.92
5 45.56 39.83
6 45.61 39.86
7 45.59 40.01
8 45.66 40.00
9 45.56 39.85
10 45.65 40.00
Average 45.60 39.93
Stdev 0.041 0.078
Error 0.03 0.00

The HYBRID Trac system integrates the proven technology of the SMART Trac II with the developments brought about with the FAST Trac to design a system that is capable of testing both wet and dry products.


The HYBRID Trac’s combination of speed, accuracy and flexibility are better than other commercially available testing systems. Products such as incoming milk, milk powder, separated cream/skimmed milk, etc. are tested quickly and precisely using this unique and innovative system.

This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by CEM Corporation.

For more information on this source, please visit CEM Corporation.


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