Meghan Keck

Doctor of Philosophy, (Food Engineering)
Study Completed: 2019
College of Sciences


Thesis Title
Mathematical Modeling of Salt Diffusion in Dry-Salted Cheese

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Control of salt uptake into cheese curds is vital to the production of safe, functional, and consistent cheese products. Development of mathematical models describing the mechanisms affecting salt uptake are necessary to control curd properties, optimise salt uptake, and reduce final product inconsistency in commercial cheesemaking plants. Ms Keck developed novel image analysis techniques to assess whey expulsion behaviour in model renneted skim milk gels in-situ under different brining conditions. She combined whey expulsion results with salt uptake data to develop mechanistically-derived mathematical models of the simultaneous whey expulsion and salt uptake under brining conditions. Ms Keck adapted her mathematical models to simulate salt uptake and whey expulsion under dry salting conditions to improve salting consistency in industrial cheddar production.

Professor Tony Paterson
Dr Jeremy McLeod
Professor John Bronlund
Dr Jason Hindmarsh