Enhancing Dairy Delights: Innovations in Curd Processing and Cold Storage Techniques

Enhancing Dairy Delights: Innovations in Curd Processing and Cold Storage Techniques


June 30, 2024

In India, curd is an important part of the diet and is made and consumed in almost every household. However, with an increase in consumption, the dairy industry has started curd processing at a larger scale. With advanced technology, industrial equipment, and improved cold storage techniques, businesses now expect quality, consistency, and process efficiency.
Let us delve into more details on curd processing which is gaining much interest across the industry.

Why Curd Is the King of Dairy Products

Curd or yogurt is a fermented dairy product that is power-packed with nutrients and is considered one of the healthiest foods for human consumption across the globe. It is made by adding specific strains of good bacteria like Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus to milk. During the fermentation process, these bacteria convert the lactose in milk to lactic acid that thickens and curdles the milk, converting it into curd.

Numerous Health Benefits

Curd has many proven health benefits. According to research, it helps with digestion because of its good bacteria (yes, it’s a natural probiotic!), strengthens bones due to its high calcium and protein,  may boost your immune system, and may support heart health by lowering cholesterol and blood pressure.

Steps of the Industrial Curd-Making Process

Here is a quick overview of some of the basic steps involved in the industrial curd-making process.

1. Milk collection and quality control

Raw milk is collected from dairy farms, milk unions, and individual suppliers and goes through quality control checks to ensure it meets safety and quality standards. It must be devoid of antibiotics and should have a minimum protein level of 3.6%.

2. Milk standardization

The milk collected from various sources is then standardized to achieve a consistent fat content which ensures the optimum composition of fat and solid non fat (SNF) for better quality curd.

3. Milk homogenization

Homogenization of milk is usually done at a pressure of 150/50 bar using homogenizer equipment to break down and to ensure uniform distribution of fat globules throughout the milk.

4. Pasteurization

Milk is then pasteurized to eliminate harmful bacteria and pathogens while maintaining the good bacteria required for fermentation.  Pasteurization involves heating homogenized milk at a specific temperature range of 90 to 95 ℃  for a duration of 5 to 6 minutes and then subsequently cooling it down to a temperature of 40–42  ℃.

5. Inoculation with starter culture

Inoculation is the process of adding a starting culture of lactic acid bacteria at a required dose and mixing it thoroughly in the milk. This culture metabolizes the lactose in the milk through fermentation and converts it into lactic acid which is responsible for coagulation of the milk and forming curd.

6. Filling and sealing

Inoculated milk is then transferred to different types of packages and sealed to prevent contamination.

7. Incubation and fermentation

The milk packets are then transferred to an incubation room with controlled temperatures for a specific duration. Usually, a temperature range of 42 (∓ 2 ℃) for 4 to 6 hours to facilitate fermentation. During fermentation, the lactic acid bacteria metabolize lactose in the milk to produce lactic acid, which causes the milk proteins to coagulate and form curd. Once the pH level of curd has reached to roughly 4.7, it indicates that the curd has solidified.

8. Blast cooling

After reaching the required pH level, the next step is to immediately cool the curd to a temperature below 4 ℃ to halt the ongoing acidification process. To ensure the best results, it is advisable to reduce the temperature from 42 ℃ to 3 ℃ within a duration of 4 to 6 hours. The curd blast chillers are specifically designed for rapidly chilling the curd and are fitted with high-velocity air-guided systems that evenly distribute the air, aiding in uniform chilling.


The curd is then packaged into various containers as per requirements. The containers are made of food-grade materials that ensure the freshness, quality, consistency, and shelf life of curd.


Packaged curd is stored in refrigerated warehouses or cold rooms before being distributed to retail stores and consumers. Over the past few years, the dairy industry has seen a lot of innovations in curd processing, storage, and packaging techniques aiming at improving the quality, consistency, and shelf life of curd.

Some Notable Innovations and Advancements in Curd Processing and Cold Storage Techniques

  • Curd incubators and chillers: Curd Incubators are designed to maintain a temperature of +43 ℃ in a 2-hour batch process scientifically facilitating the setting of curd. Curd chillers are designed to pull down the temperature from 43 ℃ to 10 ℃ in 2 hours and further cooling in 2 hours to 4 ℃.
  • Controlled fermentation process: Technological advancements in the fermentation control system equip the makers to create optimum conditions for curd formation by controlling factors such as temperature, humidity, and pH level, ensuring product quality.
  • Innovation in cold storage technologies: Energy-efficient refrigeration systems, advanced monitoring devices, and improved insulation in the cold storage industry have significantly improved the processing and storage facilities for milk and milk products, ensuring their better shelf life, freshness, and quality.
  • Dealing with alternative milk sources: Milk can be obtained from multiple sources such as soy, almond, coconut, and oats. As the demand for plant-based milk and milk products is constantly growing, technological innovations in processing techniques have enabled curd production from these multiple sources.
  • Microbial cultures: Advancements in microbiology have led to the development of a specialised microbial culture that can enhance the texture, flavour, and nutritional properties of curd.
  • Packaging: Packaging is crucial when dealing with food preservation. Technological advancements have led to the development of packaging material that is food-safe, extends the shelf life, and maintains the freshness and quality of food.
Innovations in technology have contributed to the advancement of curd processing, storage, and distribution. With the ever-growing demand for regular and plant-based curd, these innovations will find extensive applications at much larger facilities ensuring better quality curd. This will enable the curd producers to meet the customer demand with ease and efficiency.

Final Words

In conclusion, advancements in curd processing and cold storage techniques have transformed the dairy industry. These innovations ensure better quality, consistency, and efficiency, meeting the growing demand for traditional and plant-based curd products. If your business wants to benefit from these technologies and improve production, get in touch with us today.
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