Coffee yoghurt anyone? University partners with dairy to produce unique product

A staff member explains how coffee flavoured yoghurt is made at the Mukurweini Wakulima Dairy in Nyeri on December 4, 2020. The yoghurt launched in November by Agriculture CS Peter Munya, is expected to boost farmers’ profits.

Photo credit: Joseph Kanyi | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Growing competition and consumer awareness on healthy and safe products have led to increased research and innovations on foods with high quality that meets consumers expectations in terms of nutritional and flavour properties
  • Regular consumption of yoghurt enhances the immune system and protects the body from a variety of infections, including yeast infections.
  • It is rich in calcium, vitamins B6 and B12, riboflavin, potassium, and magnesium. The amounts depend on the type.

You have probably had vanilla yoghurt, strawberry, and probably chocolate-flavoured yoghurt, but have you had coffee-flavoured yoghurt?

As dairy and coffee farmers countrywide grapple with low prices for their products, Mukurweini Wakulima Dairy Nyeri County, and Dedan Kimathi University of Technology’s Institute of Food Bioresources Technology, IFBT, have partnered to produce this unique yogurt in an effort to increase farmers’ profits, while producing a nutritious food.

The yoghurt was launched in November by Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya. As the county records a spike in non-communicable diseases, there has been increased demand for natural, healthy and nutritious food products, among them yogurt - Dr Paul Sang, a food scientist based at the institute, said that yoghurt is among the highly nutritious and easily digestible dairy products rich in protein, minerals and vitamins, and has been proven to contribute to gut health besides boosting the immune system. 

“Growing competition and consumer awareness on healthy and safe products have led to increased research and innovations on foods with high quality that meets consumers expectations in terms of nutritional and flavour properties,” he says.

Usefulness of partnerships

The director of IFBT, Eddy Owaga, explains that the process used to extract the coffee not only enhances the flavour of the yoghurt, but also amplifies its anti-oxidative and antimicrobial properties.

The process involves using modified extraction technologies, which produce a unique coffee aroma and a sweet, long pleasant aftertaste.

The extracts are mainly from premium grades AA, AB and PB, which contributes to the optimal taste of the yogurt. The yoghurt has no synthetic additives. 

Wakulima Dairy's CEO, Peter Kamau, said that the innovation is a clear demonstration of the usefulness of partnerships between universities and industries to resolve local challenges, saying that the dairy had signed a license agreement with the university towards industrial-scale production and marketing of the yogurt in supermarkets across the country and beyond.

imugo@ke.nationmedia.com

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Benefits of yoghurt

  1. It promotes and aids digestion.
  2. Some contain active, living bacteria known as probiotics. These can help keep the intestines healthy.
  3. It is rich in calcium, vitamins B6 and B12, riboflavin, potassium, and magnesium. The amounts depend on the type.
  4. Regular consumption enhances the immune system and protects the body from a variety of infections, including yeast infections.

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