Whey offers protein fortification

by Donna Berry
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Higher-protein whey ingredients — 80%-protein whey protein concentrate (WPC80) and whey protein isolate (WPI), which has a minimum of 90% protein — are most often used for protein fortification.

“Typical applications would include tortillas, pizza crust, bread and cookies,” said Sharon Gerdes, senior account manager, US Dairy Export Council, Arlington, VA. “And protein levels can be increased by 2 to 3 g per serving. A baker must remember that when making a protein content claim on a product, such as ‘good source’ or ‘excellent source,’ the packaging must list not only the total grams of protein but also the percent Daily Value for protein.”

Gwen Bargetzi, director of marketing, Hilmar Ingredients, Hilmar, CA, concurred on the use of whey proteins for fortification. “Whey proteins are ideal for general fortification because they are considered complete, high-quality proteins,” she said. “They can be used alone or can lend a helping hand to lesser quality proteins such as wheat or soy.”

Bread provides a good example of how whey protein complements wheat protein, which is deficient in the essential amino acid lysine. Whey proteins also contribute to browning and add a pleasant dairy note to breads.

“Along with improved nutrition, adding whey proteins to a bakery formulation can lower the carbohydrate and fat contents, two nutrients consumers tend to prefer less of,” Ms. Bargetzi added. “In low-fat or fat-free cakes, whey proteins can be effective in addressing issues such as tough texture and reduced volumes.”

Whey ingredients can go into bakery formulations as dry materials. “It is not necessary to pre-hydrate whey ingredients,” Ms. Gerdes said. “Dry dairy ingredients are typically added along with other dry ingredients in a formula. For certain applications, such as cakes and cookies, whey ingredients can be incorporated in the creaming stage.”
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