Microbial cultures for industrial food applications

A.Y. 2019/2020
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course aims to provide students with the knowledge related to the production and characterization of microbial cultures at industrial level. The course also aims to provide students with knowledge of EU and US regulations that define regulatory constraints and guidelines for the use of microorganisms in the food chain.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course the students will be able to manage the microbial cultures used in food both from a technical and regulatory point of view.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
Second semester
Course syllabus
Definition of microbial cultures; historical notes on their use since ancient times; microbial culture declaration (EU Reg. 1169/2011 and updates). Regulation and safety criteria for microbial cultures, role of the institutions involved in the risk assessment of microbial cultures (EU Commission, EFSA, FEEDAP, BOHAZ, IDF, EFFCA); USA: FDA and GRAS; EU: EFSA and QPS list; the Nagoya protocol; the Cartagena protocol on Biosafety. "Desired" properties (inhibition of pathogens, degradation of toxic compounds, improvement of the digestibility of the food, enrichment of the food with vitamins, amino acids, fatty acids and proteins) and "unwanted" (production of toxic metabolites, virulence factors, antibiotic resistance) of microbial cultures. Focus on antibiotic resistance in the food chain and EFSA documents with guidelines for determining antibiotic sensitivity. Genotypic methods for the evaluation of microbial cultures: Whole Genome Sequencing (WGS). Stability of microbial cultures (what is stability and how to control it, examples: Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG and Lactobacillus paracasei F19). How the production conditions of microbial cultures can influence their biomass yield, their activity in the industrial fermentative process and their stability. Description of the main microbial cultures that have a technological and / or beneficial role in fermented products: protection crops. Some examples of microbial cultures and their applications in the food industry (such as conservation, for the creation of new products, for the modification of some properties of the food and for the production of antimicrobials, vitamins and vaccines).
The teaching will also take advantage of seminars conducted by industry experts.
Prerequisites for admission
Teaching methods
Lectures and seminars by experts in the microbial biomass production sector for the food industry.
Teaching Resources
Copy of the slides used in class; lecture notes; bibliographic material provided by the teacher.
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam is oral and covers all the topics addressed in the classroom
AGR/16 - AGRICULTURAL MICROBIOLOGY - University credits: 4
Lessons: 32 hours
Professor: Arioli Stefania