Anhydrous Milkfat

The food product resulting from the removal of practically all of the moisture and the solids-not-fat from pasteurized cream or butter. It contains not less than 99.8 percent fat and not more than 0.1 percent moisture and, when produced from butter, not more than 0.1 percent other butter constituents, of which the salt shall be not more than 0.05 percent.

Butter

The food product which is made exclusively from milk or cream or both, with or without common salt, containing not less than 80 percent by weight, of milkfat.

Butteroil

The food product resulting from the removal of practically all of the moisture and solids-not-fat from butter. It contains not less than 99.6 percent fat, and not more than 0.3 percent moisture; and not more than 0.1 percent other butter constituents, of which the salt shall be not more than 0.05 percent.

Butter Starter

Typically lactic acid starter culture(s) produced when lactic fermenting bacteria are added to skim milk. The mixture is ripened and subsequently added to cream before churning, for flavor development in the manufacture of cultured butter.

Cholesterol

A sterol with a multi-ringed (steroid) structure. The amount of cholesterol per gram of butter is 2 mg.

Churning

Physical process (batch or continuous) by which liquid cream is "worked" to coalesce the butterfat globules, with the concurrent expulsion of buttermilk.

Color

Color in butter comes primarily from the presence of carotene and xanthophyll which are natural compounds present in the feed of cows.

Cultured Butter

Fresh cream butter to which lactic acid cultures have been added for the development of a particular flavor. Most popular in European countries.

Diacetyl

Primary flavor component in butter starter cultures produced by lactic acid bacteria.

Enzyme Inactivation

Raw milk enzymes are destroyed by traditional pasteurization procedures. Heat inactivation of alkaline phosphatase (AP) is used to determine the efficiency of the pasteurization process in cream to ensure quality and safety. AP is not found in butter.

Fatty Acids

Butter contains a wide variety of fatty acids that contribute to its functional advantages and characteristics. The presence of short-chain fatty acids contributes to butter's quality as a softer fat. Butter is also very low in trans fatty acids.

Lactones

Integral components of butter flavor derived from hydroxy alkanoic acids which spontaneously lactonize to form lactones.

Lecithin

A phospholipid naturally present in butter which functions as an emulsifier.

"Light Butter"

Butter that contains 50 percent reduction in fat compared to regular butter.

Methyl Ketones

An essential component of butter flavor formed by hydrolysis and decarboxylation of B-keto acid esters.

Pasteurization

The cream for butter making shall be pasteurized at a temperature of not less than 165°F and held continuously in a vat at such temperature for not less than 30 minutes; or pasteurized by HTST method at a minimum temperature of not less than 185°F for not less than 15 seconds; or it shall be pasteurized by any other equivalent temperature and holding time which will assure adequate pasteurization. Additional heat treatment above the minimum pasteurization requirement is advisable to insure improved keeping-quality characteristics.

Reduced Fat Butter

Butter that has a 25% reduction in fat compared to regular butter.

Solid Fat Index (SFI)

Measures the solidity of fat, i.e., ratio of fat in crystalline form to liquid, at various specified temperatures. Butter has a sharp SFI curve resulting in quick flavor release.

Starter Distillate

Concentrated flavor distillate from lactic acid cultures and other bacterial cultures which may be optionally used in the production of cultured butter.

USDA Standards for Grades of Butter

Butter is classified primarily on flavor characteristics and is then rated according to body, color and salt. A final grade is assigned based on the combination of all four attributes. Grades include AA, A and B.

Whipped Butter

Butter which has had air or other acceptable gases whipped into it, resulting in a product with greater volume, reduced density and improved spreadability at colder temperatures.