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Use of whey cream in butter production



Whey cream, a by-product from cheese making, has a composition similar to that of sweet cream except for a slightly different fatty acid profile. Small amounts of whey cream are sometimes used by industry in the production of butter. The level of usage of whey cream in butter is limited to approximately 10%. At levels above 10% there is an unfavourable impact on flavour. Normally, the usage level of whey cream is approximately 1-2%. Flavoured butters may contain higher amounts of whey cream than regular butter because the addition of flavour or seasonings will adjust for any flavour imparted to the butter by the whey cream.

Regulatory requirements:

The standard for butter in the Food and Drug Regulations (FDR) states:

B.08.056 [S]. Butter

Division 8 of the FDR also has a definition for milk product. Specifically for butter or whey butter:

B.08.001.1 In this Division, "milk product" means

The standard for cream in the FDR is:

B.08.075 [S]. Cream

B.01.008(1)(b) of the FDR requires all prepackaged products which consist of more than one ingredient to include a list of ingredients including, subject to section B.01.009, components, if any.

B.01.010(3)(b) of the FDR: except when one of the ingredients or components is shown separately in the list of ingredients by its common name, all of the ingredients or components present in a food may be shown collectively in the list of ingredients by the common name

The FDR defines whey butter as:

B.08.057 [S]. Whey Butter shall be butter made from whey cream.

It must meet the minimum 80% milk fat content for butter but the milk fat is derived entirely from whey cream. Butter, as per the standard above (B.08.056. [S]), may contain multiple sources of milk fat as long as it meets the minimum 80% milk fat requirement.

The Safe Food for Canadians Regulations, Canadian Standards of Identity, Volume 1 - Dairy Products

37. Butter with (naming the seasoning or flavour) or (naming the seasoning or flavour) Butter is butter to which a seasoning or a flavour other than that of butter, or both, has been added. It must contain at least 80% milk fat.

38. Butter with (naming the fruit, vegetable or relish) is butter to which any fruit, vegetable or relish, or any combination of them, has been added. It may contain less than 80% milk fat if the percentage of milk fat is reduced by the amount of the product added, but the resulting milk fat content must be at least 75%.


(This page was amended from a record of decision signed February 15, 2006, by the Agency.)

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