Microflora and acidification properties of yogurt and yogurt-related products fermented with commercially available starter cultures
Yogurts and yogurt-related milk products were produced using 44 commercially available starter cultures from 8 suppliers. The yogurt starters consisted of the classical yogurt microflora and the yogurt-related cultures containing Lactobacillus acidophilus and/or Bifidobacterium spp. instead of or in addition to the yogurt bacteria. The counts of lactobacilli in the fresh yogurts varied between 5.5 x 10 7 and 6.5 x 10 8 CFU/ml, and the counts of streptococci varied from 3.5 x 10 7 to 1.2 x 10 9 CFU/ml. About 80% of the yogurts had higher counts of cocci than rods. During storage of the products for 2 weeks at 6 o C the stability of the microflora differed markedly among the cultures. In the fresh yogurt-related products the L. acidophilus counts ranged from 4.0 x 10 5 to 2.6 x 10 8 CFU/ml; bifidobacteria were found at levels between 4.0 x 10 6 and 2.6 x 10 8 CFU/ml. In most products reduced viable counts of these bacteria were observed after 2 weeks. Titratable acidity increased on average by 22.3% in the yogurts, and by 14.9% in the yogurt-related products during storage. In most products a higher amount of L(+)- than D(-)-lactic acid was found.
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