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Beneficial Uses

Page history last edited by Jessica 12 years, 6 months ago

 


Leuconostoc mesenteroides and Other Lactic Acid Bacteria are Important for Several Reasons 

 


 

Food

Lactic acid is widely used in the food industry.  It is important, for fermentation and/or flavor, in manufacturing many products including sauerkraut, pickles, cheese, yogurt and soft drinks.  Leuconostoc mesenteroides are known especially for the production of sauerkraut and pickles, although they are involved in the making of other items. Before moving on, please watch this informative video that explains the fermentation process.

 


 

Sauerkraut:

 

     Leuconostoc mesenteroides is important at the very beginning of the production of sauerkraut, a type of food made from shredded cabbage. 

 

Sauerkraut Production Steps

 

Source: Barbosa-Cánovas, Gustavo V., and Juan J. Fernández-Molina. "Handling and Preservation of Fruits and Vegetables by Combined Methods for Rural Areas."FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS. United Nations.   13 Dec. 2008 <http://www.fao.org/docrep/005/Y4358E/y4358e04.htm>.

               

·         The figure shows sauerkraut making steps.

·         One of the critical steps is the addition of salt.   The salt draws water from the cabbage.  This allows Leuconostoc mesenteroides to begin fermentation. 

·         Leuconostoc mesenteroides is described as a heterofermenter, because it produces many products during fermentation.  These products include lactic acid, carbon dioxide, acetate and ethanol.

·         Leuconostoc mesenteroides continues its fermentation until the acidity in the cabbage and salt mix increases to a level that causes the Leuconostoc mesenteroides to die.

·         Other lactic acid bacteria continue fermenting the sauerkraut once the Leuconostoc mesenteroides die.  They are Lactobacillus plantarum, L. Cumeris and Lactobacillus pentoaccticus.


 

 

  • Pickling:

     

     

    • Leuconostoc mesenteroides is used in pickling cucumbers and other vegetables. 
    • It operates in pickling similar to how it operates in fermentation. 
    • In this case, instead of dry salt, the salt is dissolved in water forming brine.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source:   Source: Barbosa-Cánovas, Gustavo V., and Juan J. Fernández-Molina. "Handling and Preservation of Fruits and Vegetables by Combined Methods for Rural Areas."FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS. United Nations.   13 Dec. 2008 <http://www.fao.://www.fao.org/ org/docrep/005/Y4358E/y4358e04.htm>.http docrep/005/Y4358E/y4358e04.htm

 

 

Dairy and Sour Dough Bread: 

 

Leuconostoc mesenteroides is used in starter cultures to begin fermentation in the production of sourdough bread and certain dairy products.  Cultures are necessary because Leuconostoc mesenteroides is not found naturally in these products.

 

 

 

 

Biochemical and Pharmaceutical Industries

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Leuconostoc mesenteroides form dextrans (polysaccharide of glucose) and levans (polymers of fructose).  Dextrans and levans are used in the biochemical and pharmaceutical industries.  Products in which they are used include cosmetics, substitutes for anticoagulants, and blood plasma extenders

 

Protein separators: Leuconostoc mesenteroides is used in industry in the development of products that separate protein.

 

Comments (1)

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