Modified atmospheric conditions controlling fungal growth on cheese

Per Væggemose Nielsen

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearch


    Effective control of fungal growth on cheese under storage conditions is of great concern for the dairy industry. Therefore we designed a research project together with the Danish dairy industry on modelling fungal growth on cheese as affected by the combined effect of storage conditions (O2 and CO2 level, relative humidity and temperature) and the composition of the cheese. All fungal species commonly found on cheese, starter cultures as well as contaminants, were examined.The most important factors influencing fungal growth are temperature, water activity of the medium and the carbon dioxide concentration in the incubation atmosphere. Change in oxygen level from 3 to 25% and pH from 4 to 8 has no significant effect on growth of the fungi. The fungi can be separated into different physiological groups depending on the sensitivity to the tested factors. Fungi associated to the same ecosystem or ecological niche response similarly to the tested factors.Fungi capable of growing under microaerophilic conditions (Penicillium roqueforti and Geotrichum candidum) are both almost unaffected by elevated carbon dioxide level, but strongly affected by reduced water activity. Thus they has a competitive advantage over other fungi in moist conditions with high carbon dioxide levels, such as inside a roquefort cheese or in gas tight grain storage. The key to success in food packaging is to recognise the food ecosystem, as it enables us to identify which micro
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publication10th IAPRI World Conference on Packaging 'Packaging Beyond 2000'
    Place of PublicationMelbourne
    PublisherCentre for Packaging, Transportation and Storage, Victoria University of Technology, PO Box 14428, MVMM Melbourne, Vic 8001, Australia
    Publication date1997
    Publication statusPublished - 1997
    Event10th IAPRI World Conference on Packaging: Packaging beyond 2000 - Melbourne, Australia
    Duration: 24 Mar 199727 Mar 1997
    Conference number: 10


    Conference10th IAPRI World Conference on Packaging

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