BS in Dairy Science
Dairy Science Department
The objective of this experiment was to determine whether converting from raw milk cheese production to pasteurized milk cheese production would have a positive or negative business impact for Valley Ford Cheese Company, based on consumer acceptance. The project began by making two batches of Estero Gold cheese, one with raw milk and one with pasteurized milk. The raw milk cheese was produced at Valley Ford Cheese Company, with the milk provided from its usual source, Mountain View Jersey Dairy, composed of 100% Jersey cows. The pasteurized cheese was produced at the Cal Poly Creamery, with the milk provided from the Cal Poly Dairy. The two cheeses were then aged for 6 months in a controlled environment of 50 degrees Fahrenheit and 88% humidity. Upon completion of the required aging period, sensory was conducted with 48 random college students. It was important to recognize that none of the participants had prior experience in the area of cheese evaluation. The participants were asked to complete the two sensory tests. 1) The preference test provided two random samples (one pasteurized cheese and one raw cheese) to determine which one they preferred. 2) The Triangle test asked the participants sample three cheeses, two being the same and one different, and determine the odd sample. The results of the study found that 41 out of 48 participants successfully determined the odd sample in the triangle test, and 34 out of 46 preferred the pasteurized milk sample over the raw milk sample. The resulting data indicated a significant preference in pasteurized milk cheese over raw milk cheese and a difference in taste as indicated by the triangle test. In conclusion, on the basis of purely sensory attributes, Valley Ford Cheese Company would not suffer a business setback by the conversion of raw milk cheese production to pasteurized milk cheese production and should consider this change.