Food Technologies: Fermentation

M.J.R. Nout

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Fermentation refers to the use of microorganisms to achieve desirable food properties in the fermented food or beverage. Although the word ‘fermentation’ indicates ‘anaerobic metabolism,’ it is also used in a broader sense to indicate all anaerobic and aerobic microbiological and biochemical modifications that result in desirable quality modifications of food and beverage ingredients. The fermentation itself is a part of the manufacturing process, consisting of several operations that affect the microbial activity. The diversity of food fermentations not only includes typical anaerobic events, such as the lactic acid fermentation, alcoholic fermentation, and brine maturations, but also aerobic processes, such as alkaline fermentation and fungal fermentation. During these fermentations, several antimicrobial metabolites (organic acids, alcohols, and bacteriocins) may be formed that could enhance the food safety by inhibiting or killing foodborne pathogens. However, hazardous metabolites (biogenic amines and ethyl carbamate) may accumulate and certain pathogenic microorganisms may survive or grow in fermented foods.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Food Safety, Volume 3: Foods, Materials, Technologies and Risks
EditorsS. Holt, R. Phadnis
PublisherAcademic Press
ISBN (Print)9780123786128
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Acidification
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Alkaline-fermented foods
  • Ammonia
  • Antimicrobial
  • Back slopping
  • Biogenic amines
  • Brine maturation
  • Carbon dioxide
  • Competition
  • Diacetyl
  • Ethyl carbamate
  • Fermentation
  • Food preservation
  • Food technology
  • Fungal-fermented foods
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Starter culture


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