The production process and the ripening of cheese cause chemical and physical variability on a macroscopic level. This spatial variability was examined by measuring fundamental material parameters at different locations in Gouda-type cheese blocks. The verification and quantification of this variability is needed for future research on improving the processing of cheese.
Uniaxial compression tests were used to determine Young’s moduli and fracture stresses and strains. Prony series expansions were deduced from stress-relaxation tests. Also the dry matter, protein and fat content and pH of the cheese were determined. Young’s modulus and the residual Prony coefficients were significantly higher near the crust compared to the center. The fracture stress and strain were inversely proportional to young’s modulus and thus lower near the crust. The spatial variability of the fundamental parameters could mainly be explained by the dry matter variability.
Food rheology; Cheese; Heterogeneity; Fundamental parameters