The Nuts and Bolts
We frequently meet with our inspectors for conversations about the changes we need to make on the creamery. They help us improve the creamery so it’s up to code and follows all of the rules and regulations of New York State. We have a great relationship with them and they are good people to work with! We are required to be licensed to receive a shipment of milk and to test it for antibiotic residue, and our inspectors helped us prepare to take the exams. We test every load of milk that we receive before we start making a batch of cheese. To test the milk, we take a sample from the top of the truck’s tank and check it out in our lab using a SNAP beta-lactam test to test our milk samples for any antibiotic residues. The machine that we use to do this can detect even 2 parts per billion! We also check to be sure that there is no debris or hair in the milk and that it is less than 45̊. If the milk is abnormal in any way, then we reject the load.We do all this to ensure that we create cheese that is safe for consumption. We’re looking out for you!
The heart and soul of our operation is the C.van’t Riet pasteurizer which came all the way from Holland. Our pasteurizer vat can hold 158 gallons of milk at one time and has an insulated jacket that fills with water to heat and cool the milk. Our 173 gallon milk bulk tank also came from Holland. We also have a very large ice accumulator which we pump water from and into the jacket of the pasteurizer. This machine will help us to be more time efficient so after pasteurization the milk can be cooled quickly.
It’s important to keep our equipment super clean! To do this, we have a DeLaval CIP system. CIP just stands for cleaning-in-place, because we do not have to take every thing apart to get it clean. We always clean our milk pipeline before and after we receive milk. The CIP makes it easy to clean the milk and whey pipes because all we have to do is push a button and the whole system will clean itself!
After we make a batch of cheese we will have a lot of extra whey. The handy CIP then whisks the whey away from the pasteurizer and out into a tote in the truck bay, where a local farmer picks it up. Whey is very nutritious and is high in protein and will help his animals grow faster. It’s even organic!