Microbial fermented tea - a potential source of natural food preservatives

H.Z. Mo, Yang Yang Zhu, Z.M. Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

130 Citations (Scopus)


Antimicrobial activities of microbial fermented tea are much less known than its health beneficial properties. These antimicrobial activities are generated in natural microbial fermentation process with tea leaves as substrates. The antimicrobial components produced during the fermentation process have shown inhibitory effects against several food-borne and pathogenic bacteria. With the trend of increasing use of natural and biological preservatives in food products, natural antimicrobial agents from microbial fermented tea may offer an innovative and interesting measure for such applications. However, a breakthrough in this field can only be realised after several critical aspects are clarified and further studied. Only then, the application of these potential, novel and natural antimicrobial substances from microbial fermented tea can be industrialized. The present review describes some unique microbial fermentation of tea and the antimicrobial activities formed during the fermentation process. Moreover, future needs in research and development of these antimicrobial compounds from microbial fermentation of tea are discussed for potential industrial applications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)124-130
JournalTrends in Food Science and Technology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • pu-erh tea
  • solid-state fermentation
  • antimicrobial activity
  • kombucha fermentation
  • fungus metabolites
  • oxidative damage
  • polyphenols
  • catechins
  • extracts
  • beverage


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