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Artisanal goat cheese: a new product of functional and economic interest

Grant number: 19/23896-6
Support Opportunities:Regular Research Grants
Duration: January 01, 2021 - December 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Food Science and Technology - Food Technology
Convênio/Acordo: CONFAP - National Council of State Research Support Foundations
Principal Investigator:Adriane Elisabete Antunes de Moraes
Grantee:Adriane Elisabete Antunes de Moraes
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Aplicadas (FCA). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Limeira , SP, Brazil
Associated researchers:Adriane Elisabete Antunes de Moraes ; Antonio Silvio do Egito Vasconcelos ; Evandro Leite de Souza ; Karina Maria Olbrich dos Santos ; Marcelo Antonio Morgano ; Maria Elieidy Gomes de Oliveira ; Maria Elisa Caetano Silva Abreu ; Mônica Correia Gonçalves ; Monica Tejo Cavalcanti


In the last few years, the production of goat milk has significantly increased in Brazil, both in São Paulo as the northeastern region. However, considerable challenges are still met by goat milk manufacturers for harnessing and valuing the product due to the lack of processing companies, and scant interest and acknowledgment of the economic potential of goat milk and its byproducts by the dairy industry. Integrated actions related to research and technological innovation to ensure the expansion of businesses for processing and valuing goat milk have shown great relevance for regional and national economies. Products such as cheese can be obtained from goat milk through simple and affordable processes, making it an accessible alternative for small producers and for increasing the consumption and aggregating the economic value of goat milk-derived foods. When it comes to artisan goat cheese, efforts to identify the microbiota, to characterize the technological properties and to monitor the compounds formed during the cheese ripening have been conducted worldwide. Potential benefits include the vehiculation of lactic bacteria that can contribute to the modulation of gut microbiota and, especially for matured cheeses, of bioactive compounds produced by microorganisms during ripening, such as peptides, fatty acids, and exopolysaccharides. Furthermore, it can lead to the generational growth of desirable sensorial characteristics associated with the production of volatile compounds responsible for the smell. However, there is lacking knowledge around this subject when it comes to artisanal cheese, produced in the Brazilian northeast. Existing research addressing these topics are still at initial phases, and they require the inclusion of broader studies that focus on the raw material milk, the cheese itself and interfering factors. Thus, this project aims to establish a strategy for integrated actions in research for artisanal cheese production, obtained from goat milk. To meet its goals, this proposal adopts the following objectives: to develop artisanal goat milk evaluating its technological, nutritional and sensorial characteristics, as well as its functional potential; to evaluate the efficacy of autochthonous microorganisms, potential probiotics, for the production of ripened cheese; to characterize the technological, physic, physicochemical, chemical, aromatic, microbiological and sensorial variables of the product during storage, focusing on proteomic and metagenomic studies; to identify the best products for regional and/or national commercialization promoting innovation; to create the labels for the products that present potential for commercialization (generating the label and all nutritional information); to incentivize an articulation among institutions belonging to different segments of the production chain, aiming to optimize efforts for knowledge production and sharing. Within this context, the microbiota and the profile of present metabolites will be defined, as well as the ripening time needed to ensure food security. By applying detailed knowledge, this research project will significantly contribute to consolidating a safe, high-quality product with a unique identity and good potential for market introduction. It is important to point out that these strategies aim to promote the actions of the triple propeller (tríplice hélice), in which the government, the productive sector of the economy and university work closely to facilitate communication between participants. Besides, the project aims to establish academic and scientific cooperation and exchange among researchers from the proponent institutions, UFPB and ITAL, as well as social actors involved in this project for sharing experiences during the planning and execution of research involved in the production chain of goat milk and its derived products. (AU)

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