NFOK14026U Dairy Microbiology

Volume 2015/2016
MSc Programme in Food Science and Technology
MSc Programme in Animal Derived Foods

The cource will contain lectures on:

  • Raw milk microflora.
  • Sweet dairy products microflora.
  • Pathogenic and spoilage microflora.
  • Primary (Lactic acid bacteria) and secondary (Yeasts, moulds, propionibacterium, red smear microflora, LAB ripening cultures) starter cultures microflora.
  • Bacteriophage and bacteriophage resistance.
  • Role of starter culture physiology on growth and end products (aroma formation, proteolysis, glycolysis, amino acid catabolism)
  • Non-starter lactic acid bacteria, adjunct cultures and their role in cheese ripening.

Laboratory excersises will include:

  • Raw milk microflora
  • Charaterization of microflora in fermented dairy products using culture and culture independent techniques.
  • Detection and propagation of bacteriophages from dairy products.
  • Influence of starter culture propagation conditions on starter composition and activity.

An excursion to a starter culture company will be included.



Learning Outcome

The aim of the course is to give the students a thorough knowledge of raw milk microflora, and microflora in sweet milk products as well as on microflora in starter cultures. Focus will be on primary and secondary starter cultures for dairy products, including the adventious microflora associated with cheese.

Through lectures and laboratory exercies the course will also give the students additional knowledge on microbiological analysis on organisms relevant for dairy products. Knowledge of the most important spoilage and patogens in dairy products has also been obtained.
After completing the course the student should be able to:


  • Describe the composition of starter cultures and their use in dairy products.
  • Describe the secondary, adjunct and adventious microflora found in cheese and their biochemical role in cheese ripening.
  • Comprehend role of physiology of starter, secondary starter, adjunct cultures and non-starter bacteria in fermented dairy products.
  • Comprehend principles for starter production.
  • Display knowledge on culture dependent and culture independent techniqes for quantification of microorganisms from dairy products.


  • Apply principles for species and strain identification of dairy organisms.
  • Analyse dairy product for relevant microorganisms using classical and molecular biology based methods and evaluate the putative source of them.
  • Compare literature information with own obtained data.


  • Able to find, use and evaluate dairy microbiology literature in relation dairy fermentation processes.
  • Cooperate with fellow students about literature and practical laboratory work.
  • Communicate and evaluate own data in relation to literature in writing and orally.

S. Salminen, A. von Wright, & A. Ouwehand. Lactic Acid Bacteria, Microbiological and functional aspects. 3. ed. Marcel Dekker 2004 (selected chapters)

Reviews and Original litterature

Overhead and notes

Laboratory manuals

Qualifications corresponding to LLEA10295 Microbiology of Fermented Food and Beverages
Lectures and practicals are throughout the available period. One excursion.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Colloquia
  • 5
  • Exam
  • 1
  • Excursions
  • 6
  • Guidance
  • 10
  • Lectures
  • 28
  • Practical exercises
  • 75
  • Preparation
  • 81
  • Total
  • 206
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 20 min
Individual oral examination without time for preparation, general knowledge within starter and non-starter cultures and adventitious microflora (including patogens and spoilage microorganisms) will be tested.
Exam registration requirements
Practical reports accepted
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Exam period
More than one internal examiner
Same as ordinary
Practical reports must be submitted no later than 2 weeks before signing up for reexamination closes. All reports must be approved before reexamination
Criteria for exam assesment

Fullfilment of learning outcomes