Microbes in the Kitchen

A bowl with Sauerkraut. For its production, cabbage is cut and salted,
and ripes under exclusion of air. Lactic acid-producing bacteria develop
spontaneously. They generate the typical flavour and stabilize the product
Most people are fearing microorganisms - particularly in their food. However, microbial activities do not always spoil food. In many cases, the microbes produce the typical flavour and help to conserve food by the production of acid or - in the case of beverages - alcohol. Many microbiological processes have been developed over thousands of years, although people did not know about the existence of microorganisms.

Besides the alcoholic fermentation by yeast, lactic acid fermetations are used in many processes. Furthermore, the microbial production of vinegar from alcohol and cheese production by means of propionibacteria are important. Acids prevent - particularly together with salt - growth of any pathogenic bacteria.

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