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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Dairy and Functional Foods Research

2012 Annual Report

4. Accomplishments
1. Streamlining the manufacture of fresh Hispanic-style cheese. Queso Fresco (QF) is the most popular of the Hispanic-style cheeses made in the U.S. last year, yet it has a high incidence of food safety recalls. One potential point of post-pasteurization bacterial contamination is the time-consuming milling step that is traditionally included to ensure that the QF crumbles easily. ARS researchers at Wyndmoor, Pennsylvania completed a study of their modified cheesemaking protocol for QF and showed that the milling step could be omitted from the manufacture of QF with minimal impact on the quality traits. Cheesemakers and consumers will benefit by omitting this time-consuming milling step as it removes a potential point of contamination and reduces the cost of QF manufacture.

Review Publications
Guo, L., Van Hekken, D.L., Tomasula, P.M., Tunick, M.H., Huo, G. 2012. Effect of salt on microbiology and proteolysis of Queso Fresco cheese during storage. Milchwissenschaft. 67(1):74-77.

Olson, D.W., Van Hekken, D.L., Tunick, M.H., Tomasula, P.M., Molina-Corral, F., Gardea, A. 2011. Mexican Queso Chihuahua: functional properties of aging cheese. Journal of Dairy Science. 94(9):4292-4299.

Paul, M., Nunez, A., Van Hekken, D.L. 2012. The effect of milling on proteins in model Queso Fresco cheeses. Advances in Bioscience and Biotechnology. 3:1-6.

Tunick, M.H. 2011. Choosing techniques for analysis of food components and additives. In: Otles, S., editor. Methods of Analysis of Food Components and Additives. Second Edition. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press-Taylor & Francis Group. p. 1-14.

Tunick, M.H., Van Hekken, D.L., Iandola, S.K., Tomasula, P.M. 2012. Characterization of Queso Fresco during storage at 4 and 10 deg C. Journal of Food Research. 1:308-391.

Van Hekken, D.L. 2012. Quality aspects of raw milk cheeses. Food Technology. 66:67-78.

Tunick, M.H. 2011. Cheese flavors: chemical origin and detection. In: Foster, R.D., editor. Cheese: Types, Nutrition and Consumption. Hauppage, NY: Nova Publishers. p. 207-220.

Last Modified: 2/23/2016
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