The application of milk ultrafiltration technology for cheese manufacture presents several advantages. However, it also influences proteolysis and, consequently, cheese ripening. The effects of five different processing methods for Prato cheese were evaluated with respect to the time evolution of the extent and depth of proteolysis indexes (EPI and DPI). The following treatments (T) for cheese production were studied: T1 - without ultrafiltration (standard); T2, T3, T4 and T5 - using milk concentrated by ultrafiltration (UFCM) and respectively: T2 - without pre-fermentation of the UFCM; T3 - pre-fermentation of 10% of the UFCM; T4 - pre-fermentation of 20% of the UFCM, and T5 - pre-fermentation of 20% of the UFCM plus indirect heating. Treatments affected the EPI and DPI of the cheeses (T1 lower values for EPI and DPI and T4 higher values for EPI and DPI). The time influenced the extent and depth of proteolysis indexes.
milk; membrane technology; ripening