Chr. Hansen makes breakthrough in dairy bioprotection


A new discovery is an important and game-changing chapter in Chr. Hansen’s bioprotection history

For the first time, the main mechanism of lactic acid bacteria with bioprotective effect against yeasts and molds in dairy products has been revealed: It’s all about competition for a specific nutrient (manganese).

While the popularity of food cultures that can help improve quality and shelf life has increased non-stop over the past years, scientists at Denmark based Chr. Hansen are the first to reveal the mechanism that can explain the main part of the inhibitory effect against yeast and mold spoilage organisms.

“What we have discovered and proved is the ability of our good bacteria in the FreshQ® cultures to absorb a nutrient in fermented milk that yeast and mold need to grow. This nutrient is called manganese. Through a ‘transporter’ in the bacterial strains the nutrient is removed from the food matrix, preventing the unwanted contaminants to feed on it,” says Rute Neves, director in Bacterial Physiology, Research & Development, Chr. Hansen and affiliated professor at DTU (Technical University of Denmark), Bioengineering.

Starting in-house, the Chr. Hansen scientists identified in the strains the transporter that absorbs manganese in a specific dairy food matrix. In cooperation with North Carolina State University in the US, the mechanism was proven at genetic level.

According to Peter Thoeysen, director in Dairy Bioprotection, Chr. Hansen, this discovery is an important and game-changing chapter in Chr. Hansen’s bioprotection history. The study also confirms that FreshQ® food cultures help protect dairy products from spoilage caused by yeasts and molds in a natural way.


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