Production and characterization of infant milk formula powders: A review

A.K.M. Masum, Jayani Chandrapala, Thom Huppertz, Benu Adhikari*, Bogdan Zisu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Infant milk formula (IMF) products intend to simulate the composition of human milk and meet the nutritional requirements of infants until they become familiar with complementary foods. In addition to meeting nutritional requirements, IMF powders should be stable and rehydrate well up to their use-by date. These requirements can be met by developing balanced formulations and optimizing the parameters used during processing, handling, and storage. Ingredients such as lactoferrin, milk fat globule membrane, probiotics, and prebiotics are often incorporated in some IMF powders. Stability of IMF powders is essential, and it is often compromised by handling and storage at suboptimal temperature and/or relative humidity. Uncontrollable moisture uptake by IMF powders triggers many undesirable phenomena including lowering of glass transition temperature, crystallization of lactose, formation of free fat, undesirable modification of surface composition and morphology, and reduced solubility. Sound understanding of product-process interactions is needed for judicious selection of ingredients and optimization of formulation, processing (e.g., homogenization, evaporation, drying) and storage parameters to produce nutritionally superior IMF powders and ensuring their longer shelf life. In this work, we have systematically reviewed the published works on physicochemical properties of IMF powders and how they are affected by the characteristics of ingredients and parameters used during processing and storage.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1492-1512
JournalDrying Technology
Issue number11
Early online date20 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • formulation
  • Infant milk formula
  • lactose crystallization
  • powder properties
  • processing
  • storage


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