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Enthalpy Project: 60% energy savings in milk powder production

Chocolate, ice cream and infant formula are everyday consumables. Milk powder is an essential ingredient in these products. The production process from fresh milk to powdered milk is quite complex and energy consuming. From 1 November 2013, TNO takes the lead in a 3 year €6 million European project called “Enthalpy” (Enabling the drying process to save energy and water, realising process efficiency in the dairy chain). The project will look to reduce energy usage in dairy powder production process by 60%. This reduction will be achieved by combining innovative technologies advanced by a number of Enthalpy partners located within Europe.
152 million tons of milk produced every year in the dairy sector account to 15% of the agricultural output in Europe (2011, Source: http://ec.europa.eu/agriculture/milk/). By introducing innovations and further developing technologies the Enthalpy project aims to reduce energy by 60% and water consumption by 15%. Such reductions will have a significant impact on production processes and energy consumption levels in the dairy industry and exceed the target set by the European Commission to reduce energy consumption in such processes by 20% and by the year 2020.
the Enthalpy scientists coming from eight EU member states will examine four key areas along the production chain and ensure simultaneous savings of resources. They will consider:
1) more efficient pre-treatment of milk,
2) elimination of fine particles during spray drying,
3) recovery of heat and water present in the used drying air,
4) more effective cleaning processes.