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How to prevent a Whey Protein Concentrate formulation from clumping?


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#1 set_asura

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 01:54 PM

Hello everyone, 

My apologies if this topic is in the wrong place, please feel free to move it if it is. I am hoping I can seek this kind of help on this forum.

I am in the midst of developing a protein shake formulation and have been encountering real problems making a Whey Protein Concentrate formulation not clump. I am only using three ingredients; WPC powder, a thickener gum and an artificial flavouring. Any ideas on why this might be and how I can get around it? It is less prominent in a blend with Whey Protein Isolate included, but I am resolved to make it work with just WPC.

For various reasons I cannot state ingredient percentages or even the exact 'products' I'm using, but I can say that it is a standard WPC80 variant. If there are any ideas regarding what I can do to overcome this problem it would be greatly appreciated. The gum decreases the froth but does not seem to eradicate the small lumps of WPC that seem to turn to a super smooth consistency (which housing dry powder within, dependant on the size of the clump) when it contacts the water or is left in the water for extended periods of time (such as 30 seconds, but it really can be any amount of time, though it's worse the longer it is idle in the water without being mixed). 

Things we have tried so far to fix the issue:

Two different WPC sources. Both clumped.
Varying amounts of gum. We want to keep the protein content high so we cannot add any more without a decrease in the protein content which hurts the nutritional profile versus competitors.

Things we want to try if the feedback concurs:

A larger mixing trial for the formulation. So far we have been working off 60g batches with a rather crude mixing method (i.e.: shaking it around in a container). My question here would be "Will a larger mixing trial actually likely result in the formulation suddenly mixing perfectly and not clumping?" to which my gut response is "no". I want to be wrong! Can someone please tell me if they think otherwise or agree with me?
We would like to try Fonterra WPC. However, they are a little tricky to get WPC from for product trials. Does anyone think that Fonterra whey would make any considerable difference to the clumping?
Decrease the amount of gum. If people think that gum is the most likely culprit for the clumping.

Any and all feedback will be much appreciated. I just want to get past this hurdle.



#2 SQFconsultant

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 02:53 PM

Look up this product and take a look at the ingredients - Nutiva MCT Powder Chocolate flavored -- this a product that easily clumps, but I think they added Tapioca Maltodextrin to it for free flowing.  And due to the fiber contained in the product it has 0 net carbs and the Malto only accounts for a small fraction of the content.,


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#3 bmart

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 07:29 PM

I don't know how well it will work in a whey protein formula but you can try using an anti-caking agent. This is typical in flours and dried milks to help with flow-ability. Maybe if you inhibit the clumps from forming in the powder that one follow through once you wet it. The wikipedia page has some examples of typical anti-caking products https://en.wikipedia...nticaking_agent

 

Proteins can be pretty difficult to wet. You may want to think about adding a wetting agent like lecithin to improve the overall wettability of the powder. Alternatively, you can try to find anagglomerated WPC too.



#4 Hank Major

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 07:32 PM

Is this a dry mix for people to add water to, or are you adding the water?



#5 Gerard H.

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 07:56 PM

Dear Set,

Glenn is close with or has the solution. You need to bring a carrier in to avoid that the water molecules keep the whey powder together.

It's a similar solution as used for coffee milk powder.

Kind regards,

Gerard Heerkens



#6 sqflady

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Posted 22 May 2019 - 12:36 PM

I have worked in a facility that produces WPC.  Most WPC intended to mix with water is sprayed with a fine spray of lecithin just prior to packaging.  We used a sunflower lecithin to avoid allergens.  You could try adding lecithin powder to your mix and see if that helps, if not, you will want to purchase whey that has been sprayed with a liquid lecithin.  



#7 set_asura

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Posted 22 May 2019 - 02:25 PM

Is this a dry mix for people to add water to, or are you adding the water?

Dry mix for people to add water to.
 

I have worked in a facility that produces WPC.  Most WPC intended to mix with water is sprayed with a fine spray of lecithin just prior to packaging.  We used a sunflower lecithin to avoid allergens.  You could try adding lecithin powder to your mix and see if that helps, if not, you will want to purchase whey that has been sprayed with a liquid lecithin.  

Thanks! I think this is likely the cause. Similar to what others said but the mention of the sunflower lecithin is very helpful. I will investigate this next!

Thank you to everyone who replied! Much appreciated.



#8 Sakura

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 03:32 PM

Dear Set, When does the lumps happen? It happens after mixing WPC or after heat treatment? How is pH of your product after mixing and pH of water before mixing? It may depend on the temperature or/and of water and what kind of WPC can be used. It also depend on heat treatment temperature and homogenize if your product is passed in it. Did you only make small scale in lab or production trial? and how many % protein  of your product?   

 

As I know, there are many manufacturer in all the world to product WPC as Fonterra, Glabia Nutrional, Ingredia, Hilmar.. .They are produced many kind of WPC as Optisol, WPC550,... which is suitable for protein shake formulation. You should to contact directly to them. 

Thanks,
Best Regards.





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