Butterfat or milkfat is the fatty portion of milk. Milk and cream are often sold according to the amount of butterfat they contain.
Composition [ edit ]
fatty acids of butterfat are typically composed as follows (by mass fraction): [1 ] [2 ]
Butterfat is a
(a fat) derived from fatty acids such as myristic, palmitic, and oleic acids.
Fatty acids vs triglycerides [ edit ]
As shown above, the composition of fats in milk is usually discussed in terms of the fatty acids. Fatty acids do not occur as such in milk (and rarely in any food). Instead, they are incorporated into compounds called
triglycerides. [2 ]
U.S. Standards [ edit ]
U.S., there are federal standards for butterfat content of [3 ] dairy products. [4 ] [5 ] [6 ] Commercial products generally contain the minimum legal amount of fat. [7 ]
skim milk contains less than 0.5% fat, typically 0.1%
lowfat milk contains between 0.5–2% fat; 1% and 2% varieties are widely marketed
whole milk contains at least 3.25% fat
curd and nonfat cottage cheese contain less than 0.5% fat cottage cheese contains at least 4% fat
lowfat cottage cheese contains 0.5–2% fat
Cheddar cheese contains at least 50% fat relative to the total solids
Swiss cheese contains at least 43% fat relative to the total solids Frozen
ice cream contains at least 10% fat lowfat ice cream, also called
ice milk, contains no more than 2.6% fat
frozen custard, like ice cream, contains at least 10% fat, but it also must contain at least 1.4% egg yolk solids
sherbet contains 1–2% fat
Butter (including whipped butter) contains at least 80% fat
See also [ edit ]
References [ edit ]
^ National Research Council, 1976, , Printing and Publishing Office, National Academy of Science, Washington, D.C., online edition Fat Content and Composition of Animal Products ISBN 0-309-02440-4; p. 203
^ a b The quote values vary by 1-3% according to the source: Rolf Jost "Milk and Dairy Products" Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry, Wiley-VCH, Weinheim, 2002. doi: 10.1002/14356007.a16_589.pub3
^ United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Marketing Service
^ USDA Commercial Item Description: Milks, Fluid (2001).
^ USDA Specifications for Cream Cheese, Cream Cheese with other Foods, and Related Products (1994).
^ United States Department of Agriculture Standard for Ice Cream (1977).
^ USDA Commercial Item Description: Cream, Eggnog, Half-and-half, and Sour Cream (2002).