Blue cheese production
STAFF RESPONSIBILITIESCheese Maker - Manufacture of cheese, hygiene and health and safety in the department.
Cheese Assistant - Assists cheese maker in his/her role.
DOCUMENTS requiredWork Instructions
Cheesemaking log / record sheet
Pasteuriser operating instructions
Vat operating instructions
Piercing Machine operating instructions
Laboratory methods manual.
DAY ONE1. In winter and colder weather turn on heaters to allow room to heat up to around a temp. of (28°C)
2. Make up fresh hypochlorite final rinse solution
3. Ensure all equipment is clean and free from foreign bodies.
NB: Before handling product, or any equipment, wash your hands and wash them at regular intervals. Ensure that any equipment that comes into contact with product has been rinsed in the mild hypochlorite solution.
5. Ensure valves and sections are closed on vats.
6. Pasteurise the milk as per pasteuriser operating instructions.
NB: All production checks to be recorded on cheesemaking process record.
Take 3 raw milk samples, one for titratable acidity, one for chemical analysis and bacteria and one for somatic cell test.
13. Add the rennet solution by pouring the mixture over the length of the vat, and stirring gently.
14. Leave to coagulate.
15. Test milk for coagulation- by making a slice in the gel with a knife and placing the blade in to form a "T" . Then lift so the original cut opens up. If the sides are smooth and shiny, coagulation is complete. If this is not the case, then the milk should be left for a longer period of time at the cheesemakers discretion. If no coagulation has taken place, there may be a problem with the raw materials, which should be investigated immediately.
16. Cut the curd using the cutting strings or blades,
17. Check the acidity of the whey (Lab 10/19). Check the temperature (°C) .
18. After ten minutes gently stir the curd to separate the curd particles, this is then repeated two hours after the curd was originally cut. Check the acidity (Lab 10/19). Check the temperature (°C).
19. Remove the whey from the vat ,
21. Place the curd channel in front of the vat.
22. Place the draining table below the curd channel with moulds in sets , with a riser positioned over each mould.
23. Slowly let the curd out of the first section. The curd is guided into a riser and moulds.
24. Continue the process until all the curd is in the moulds. Take a sample of the curd for microbial analysis.
26. Leave the moulds to stand for thirty minutes, then turn each mould, by now the curd should be at least half way down the top mould.
27. At intervals specified on the production sheet, the cheese should be turned. At each turn the acidity should be checked.
DAY TWO29. Ensure adequate brine solution is made up
31. Place the cheese in the brine.
32. After a set time remove from the brine and dry salt.
33. Place the salted cheese on a rack .
34. Racks are moved to the maturation store where cheese is held at a set relative humidity. Each set of racks is given a batch code label with the production date in permanent ink. Cheese must be turned daily. The date of turning must be recorded on the mould turning record sheet.
DAY No.35. The Blue Cheese is passed through the piercing machine which is operated as per piercing machine operating instructions.
WEEK No.36. Cheese is wrapped in foil and pierced. Continue to turn every day. A sample is taken for moisture analysis.
37. Cheese is graded and removed to the cold store for storage until packaging into mild or remains in the maturation store for a further period to mature.
38. A sample from each batch must be taken for microbiological sampling.
39. At maturity the cheese must be moved to cold store.
Store temperature is recorded on a chart daily
All process checks must be recorded on the appropriate log sheet.
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