Milk Is White, Why is Butter Yellow?

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    Oct 15, 2016 1:30 AM GMT
    butter-photo-tmagArticle.jpg

    NYT: Cows that eat grass and flowers store the yellow pigment beta carotene, found naturally in those plants, in their fat.

    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/10/14/since-milk-is-white-why-is-butter-yellow/?
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    Oct 15, 2016 1:53 AM GMT
    The difference in color is primarily due to the higher fat content of butter. Cows that eat grass and flowers store the yellow pigment beta carotene, found naturally in those plants, in their fat. The pigment gets carried over into the fat in their milk. Milk consists mostly of water, with just over 3 percent fat in whole milk; cream is usually about 30 to 40 percent fat; and butter contains at least 80 percent fat.

    The fat globules suspended in milk or cream are surrounded by a thin membrane that, in essence, ends up hiding the beta carotene pigment. This structure reflects light in such a way that the milk looks white.

    Making butter requires churning cream, and during that agitation process “you break the membrane apart, and the fat globules cluster together,” said Elaine Khosrova, the former editor of the publication culture, about cheese making, and author of the new book “Butter: A Rich History.” “That’s the goal of butter making: to break that membrane.” In doing so, you expose the beta carotene, she said. When you separate out the buttermilk after churning, what remains is mostly butterfat, which is the most yellow of all.

    You may notice, however, that butter from sheep’s milk, goat’s milk or water buffalo’s milk is white. Those animals don’t store beta carotene the way cows do. Instead, they convert it to vitamin A, which is colorless.


    http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/10/14/since-milk-is-white-why-is-butter-yellow/?_r=0
  • mybud

    Posts: 11837

    Oct 15, 2016 2:33 AM GMT
    The addition of salt changes it structure turning it yellow.
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    Oct 15, 2016 4:19 AM GMT
    Art's explanation sounds more plausible.
  • ANTiSociaLiNJ...

    Posts: 1171

    Oct 16, 2016 2:33 AM GMT
    I just learned that butter that is whiter in appearance comes from cows fed corn. And cows that are fed a grass diet result in producing milk richer in omega-3's and beta-carotene. Here's a photo of the visible differences:

    Wht-ylw-butter-1web.jpg

    The butter on the left is from the Kerrigold brand of dairy products produced from hormone-free, grass fed cows.
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    Oct 16, 2016 2:36 AM GMT
    Wow Anti! That's great research.
  • ANTiSociaLiNJ...

    Posts: 1171

    Oct 16, 2016 2:54 AM GMT
    woodsmen saidWow Anti! That's great research.


    Are you being sarcastic toward me? icon_lol.gif

    I remember as a teenager wondering why butter was yellower than milk. And I recall looking at the ingredient list of butter and learned that they added annato for coloring. They add a lot more annato to cheeses like Colby Jack to get that yellow-orange appearance.

    https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/annatto-makes-cheese-butter-yellow-shaji-viswanathan
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    Oct 16, 2016 4:10 AM GMT
    ANTiSociaLiNJUSTICeWarior said
    woodsmen saidWow Anti! That's great research.


    Are you being sarcastic toward me? icon_lol.gif

    I remember as a teenager wondering why butter was yellower than milk. And I recall looking at the ingredient list of butter and learned that they added annato for coloring. They add a lot more annato to cheeses like Colby Jack to get that yellow-orange appearance.

    https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/annatto-makes-cheese-butter-yellow-shaji-viswanathan


    No. Absolutely not sarcastic!
  • BradWriderX

    Posts: 4

    Oct 20, 2016 8:16 PM GMT
    it has to do with the other shit they put in it
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    Oct 21, 2016 1:24 PM GMT
    If too yellow or too white the color is adjusted to always be around yellow rgb(255,255,0).
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    Nov 04, 2016 3:10 AM GMT
    Should see how yellow the milk is right after the cows given birth.
  • rdberg1957

    Posts: 662

    Nov 04, 2016 6:16 AM GMT
    take a look at sweet butter (unsalted). Much whiter.
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    Nov 05, 2016 5:42 AM GMT
    Butter is 80% fat. "Whole" homogenized milk is 3.25% fat. Milk is also a colloidal suspension that scatters room light.
    Most of the cheap butter in supermarkets, like the cheap cheese, probably has yellow dye added to it (from carrots.) The good stuff is white.
    When we used to have butter made from the milk of our cows in our pasture, it was usually mostly white. Except for a couple of weeks in the spring when it went more yellow. It would usually have a kind of weedy onion-like smell at that time, too. So did the milk. Ew.

    The first milk that a cow gives after calving is also yellow, and is called "colostrum." Usually, you let the calf have that.