Uses of microorganisms in food industry
- Microorganisms posses several characteristics, which make them most ideal organisms for industrial processes.
- They possess a broad variety of enzymes making an array of chemical conversions possible.
- They have a relatively high metabolic activity which allows conversions to take place rapidly.
- They possess a large surface area for quick absorption of nutrients and release of end products.
- Moreover, they have a high rate of multiplication, as 20-minute generation time for E.coli under ideal conditions.
- In an industrial process, a microorganism in fact represents a mini-chemical factory.
- The efficiency of this factory depends upon the liberation of large amount of a single product that may be efficiently isolated and purified.
- The microbe should be easily cultivated and maintained and should have genetic stability with infrequent mutations. Its value enhances if it grow on inexpensive, readily available substrate that may be the by-product of other industrial processes.
- For example, a large amount of whey is produced in cheese production. If there are other microbes which could convert the whey components to lactic acid, this will to an overall profit of cheese industry.
- Many species of microbes, relatively few possess the genetic information needed to produce economically useful products.
Some microbial species used for production of commercial products are as:-
|Ethanol (from glucose)
Ethanol (from glucose)
Acetone and butanol
5′ inosinic acid and 5′- guanylic acid
Pectinases and Protease
Amphotericin B, kanamycins, neomycin, Streptomycin, tetracyclines and others
Insulin, human growth hormone, somatostatin,interferon (via RDT)