Dairy Chemist

Analyze the chemical components of milk.
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Quick Stats

Salary Range
$39,000 – $116,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Dairy Chemists do?

A cow says moo, and a Dairy Chemist is there to figure out why the moo matters. Belonging to the broader category of Chemists, a Dairy Chemist uses scientific research and methods to analyze dairy products. The moo-juice, or milk, is impacted by a variety of factors, and the Dairy Chemist determines what each one does.

As a Dairy Chemist, you evaluate organic and inorganic materials and their impact on the physical properties of milk. Since milk is used to make cheese, sour cream, butter, and other dairy products, when the milk changes, those products change, too. Working primarily in food research facilities or dairy farms, you’re tasked with using your skills to improve a product: milk.

Courses in biology, chemistry, zoology, veterinary science, and other related courses provide the background to work with other Chemists, Food Chemists, and Dairy Consultants. English and communication classes are also essential as you prepare reports based on your findings. Oral presentations are part of your duties as well, making public speaking and presentation skills necessary.

For example, you want to know how the flavor of milk changes when the cow ingests honeysuckle plants. Given the natural (organic) properties of the honeysuckle vine, you theorize that the milk will be sweeter than when the cow is fed grass. You develop an experiment that follows two cows for three months; one is given a diet based on honeysuckle vine, and the other is given only grass.

After tracking the sugar content in the milk of both bovines for the three-month period, you have your answer. But you’re not done yet. The information you gathered becomes the basis for your report to Supervisors and peers in the research community.

Should I be a Dairy Chemist?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Logical Thinker: You take a step-by-step approach to analyze information and solve problems.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • How to become a Dairy Chemist

    Most Dairy Chemists have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aea9cl&chl=|certificate+%286%25%29||bachelor%27s+%2877%25%29|master%27s+%283%25%29|doctorate+%2814%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,77
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