Coca-Cola has been granted a patent for a method of preparing dairy compositions using ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, and forward osmosis. The method involves filtering milk to produce permeate and retentate fractions, further filtering the permeate fraction, subjecting it to forward osmosis to produce a mineral concentrate, and combining the retentate fraction with the mineral concentrate to form the dairy composition. The mineral concentrate contains a specific range of minerals and solids. GlobalData’s report on Coca-Cola gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s company profile on Coca-Cola, artificial sweetners was a key innovation area identified from patents. Coca-Cola's grant share as of September 2023 was 52%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.

Method for preparing dairy compositions using filtration and osmosis

Source: United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Credit: The Coca-Cola Co

A recently granted patent (Publication Number: US11771103B2) describes a method for making a dairy composition using a multi-step filtration process. The method involves ultrafiltering a milk product to produce two fractions: an ultrafiltration (UF) permeate fraction and an UF retentate fraction. The UF permeate fraction is then nanofiltered to produce a nanofiltration (NF) permeate fraction and an NF retentate fraction. The NF permeate fraction is subjected to a forward osmosis step to produce a mineral concentrate. Finally, the UF retentate fraction and the mineral concentrate are combined to form the dairy composition.

The mineral concentrate in the dairy composition contains approximately 1.5 to 9 wt. % minerals and 1 to 30 wt. % solids. The method can also include separating raw milk into the milk product and a fat-rich fraction, with the milk product being skim milk. Water can be added during the combining step to form the dairy composition.

Additional steps in the method include treating the UF retentate fraction and/or the mineral concentrate with lactase enzyme, heat treating the dairy composition through ultra-high temperature (UHT) sterilization or pasteurization, and adding various ingredients such as sugar/sweetener, flavorant, preservative, stabilizer, emulsifier, prebiotic substance, special probiotic bacteria, vitamin, mineral, omega 3 fatty acid, phyto-sterol, antioxidant, or colorant.

The forward osmosis step can be conducted at a pressure of up to 30 psig and a temperature range of 5 to 15°C. The concentration factor of the forward osmosis step should be at least 3 and less than or equal to 100 based on wt. % minerals. The forward osmosis draw solution can include sodium, potassium, chloride, sucrose, glucose, galactose, lactose, fructose, maltose, potassium lactate, or milk minerals.

Overall, this patented method provides a detailed process for producing a dairy composition with specific mineral and solid content, utilizing a combination of ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, and forward osmosis techniques. The method allows for customization of the composition by adding various ingredients and can be applied to skim milk or a fat-rich fraction.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData Patent Analytics tracks bibliographic data, legal events data, point in time patent ownerships, and backward and forward citations from global patenting offices. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.