Isolation and Identification of Yeasts Associated with Intermediate Moisture Meats

Heinke Wolter, Elizna Laing and Bennie C. Viljoen*

Department of Microbiology and Biochemistry, P.O. Box 339, University of the Orange Free State, Bloemfontein, 9300, South Africa

Article history:

Received November 10, 1999
Accepted January 21, 2000

Key words:

isolation, identification, yeast, intermediate moisture meats


Biltong, cabanossi, dry sausage, salami are typical intermediate moisture meats produced and consumed to a large extent in South Africa. A study was undertaken with the objective of isolating and identifying the dominant yeasts associated with these meat products. Microbiological analyses were performed by the enumeration of all relevant microbial organisms on selective agar, and the isolation and identification of all visually distinct yeast colonies by means of conventional methods. A total of 11 different yeast species, representing nine genera, were present in the samples analysed. Although a broad spectrum of yeasts were found in the meats, Debaryomyces hansenii was the most abundant yeast isolated. Other species encountered, were Cryptococcus laurentii, Cryptococcus hungaricus, Torulaspora delbrueckii, Rhodotorula mucilaginosa, Sporobolomyces roseus, Debaryomyces vanriji, Trichosporon beigelii, Yarrowia lipolytica, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Candida zeylanoides. The chemical and physical composition of these intermediate moisture meat products were also established. Representative samples of biltong, cabanossi, dry sausage and salami were evaluated and the water activity, pH, moisture fraction (%) and salt fraction (%) were measured.   

*Corresponding author:
                                               ++27 (0)51 4012 621
                                               ++27 (0)51 4443 219

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