Powdered milk is a substance many of us have been in contact with during our lives, either consuming it as an infant or feeding it to children. Spray drying, drum drying or freeze drying are current methods to convert liquid milk into powdered milk, achieving a much longer shelf life than that of the liquid, without need for refrigeration.

Powdered milk is frequently used in the manufacture of infant formula, confectionery such as chocolate and caramel candy, and in various other sweets. It is also a common item in United Nations food aid supplies and shelters and is widely used in developing countries because of the reduced weight and bulk. It contains all 21 standard amino acids (the building blocks of proteins) and a large number of soluble vitamins and minerals. These minerals are represented by a number of chemical elements. Major elements like sodium, magnesium, phosphorus, chlorine, potassium and calcium are normally present in the low percentage range, while trace elements like manganese, iron, zinc and copper can be present in the mg/kg range.

Control and standardization of the elemental content are essential for product quality and consistency. They enable correction and prevention of nutritional deficiencies in the original milk and facilitate means to restore nutrient loss during processing. Checking the production process is essential to ensure milk powder is safe food in all respects.

To match the increasing demand and related production throughput for milk powders, manufacturers can rely on Malvern Panalytical’s Epsilon 1 X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectrometer for the fast and easy analysis of milk powder.

This Epsilon 1 includes a built-in computer, user software and a sample preparation starting kit. The system is designed with a touch screen to provide ultimate ease of use and delivers milk powder analysis in four simple steps with minimal sample preparation. Results are accurate and highly reproducible, yet very cost effective. Epsilon 1 is fully compliant with international food industry standards, and an additional Enhanced Data Security software package can be purchased for FDA CFR 21 Part 11 compliance.


Potassium facilitates many reactions including protein synthesis, signal transmission in nerves and contraction of muscles.
Calcium is the principal constituent of bones and teeth and is involved in muscle contraction and relaxation, nerve function, blood clotting and blood pressure regulation.
Iron is essential for blood hemoglobin formation, it is part of muscle myoglobin and plays an essential role in energy utilization.
Zinc is essential for normal fetal development, vitamin A transport and wound healing. It is part of many enzymes, is present in insulin and is involved in sperm production.


In the food industry, it is vital to have highly accurate, reliable results. Epsilon 1 brings the power of XRF to milk testing, in a compact and ready-to-use format. The simple process ensures that non-specialists in XRF may use the Epsilon 1 with ease.“

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