The ingredients arm of Arla Foods has launched a new licence package that gives other companies access to its patented technology and expertise related to the manufacture of lactose-free dairy products.
According to Henrik Anderson, Arla Foods Ingredients CEO said: “This is an opportunity for dairy manufacturers to give lactose-intolerant consumers the dairy nutrition they need from lactose-free products with a far more appealing taste than traditional dairy alternatives based on soya or rice milk.”
Included in the package is filtration technology that Arla Foods claims is able to separate half the lactose out of milk by mechanical means without disrupting its composition.
The licence also covers an enzyme that splits the remaining lactose content into glucose and galactose.
“What the enzyme does is predigest the lactose in the milk so it no longer provokes an uncomfortable reaction,” said Hans Henrik Holst, innovation manager at Arla Foods Ingredients.
“By splitting the lactose into two monosaccharide components, the final product gains the same sweetness as standard milk.”
Using its own technology, Arla Foods has developed the Lactofree range of products – the brand leader in the UK. The company claims that premium lactose-free dairy offers “huge” market potential with 15 per cent of consumers in the UK, Germany and Finland, for example, believed to be lactose intolerant.