Lactose is the sugar found in milk and whey. Its hydrolysis to glucose and galactose in milk would solve the problem of milk-intolerant people and in whey it would avoid environmental pollution and offer an interesting possibility of by-product utilization. The prepared sweet syrup has many potential applications in the food industry. Hydrolysis of lactose can be carried out by heating at low pH (acid hydrolysis) or by enzymatic catalysis with the enzyme (lactase or ..beta..-D-galactosidase) either free in solution or immobilized by one of the several enzyme immobilization methods which are abundant in the literature. Selection of the proper method depends on many factors: the nature of substrate, use of the final product, need for sanitary conditions, and, of course, capital and processing costs. 157 references.