Video: Adding the Whey

Second part of the video about the production of Parmigiano Reggiano, with Master Dairyman Cristian Pederzoli.

The video was made in July 2009, on location at the beautiful Castellazzo Dairy.
After the video, you’ll find a full transcript of the interview.


In the following transcript, Cristian Pederzoli, Master Dairyman at the Castellazzo Dairy, is indicated by the letters ‘CP’.
The interviewer, Andrea Bezzecchi, is indicated by the letter ‘I’.

CP: OK, so what is Whey exactly? Whey is a fermented starter culture derived from the Whey processing from the previous day. Um.. It’s composed of microorganisms that help to produce the cheese: it adds an increment of acidity and consequently contributes to the structure of the cheese…and it also helps with.. the fermentation process which helps it to mature.
This is one of the incubators we use. As everything’s done in as natural a way as possible, what can we to help it along? We control only one thing - the temperature. We keep the Whey at a constant temperature - the optimal temperature for the microorganisms to reproduce. They eat practically all of the sugars remaining at this stage and divide every forty minutes or so, and it all goes on in a completely natural way. We can’t interfere with natural fermentation; what I mean is, we don’t add anything to hurry the fermentation process along. All we do is just control the temperature for them, to make sure they have an optimal environment for as long as possible.
And here we add the Whey, which…has to be done very, very slowly because theres a difference in pH that’s quite…quite large, as a consequence of which you must pour it in very slowly, so as not to….well, so as not to injure it, because at this stage, the milk contains living organisms, so its alive,eh!
I: And what will this weigh, more or less?
CP: About 30 Kg.



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