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Role of microorganisms in fermented fish products  [1994]

Sumague, Ma.J.V. Mabesa, R.C. (Philippines Univ., Los Banos, College, Laguna (Philippines). Inst. of Food Science and Technology)

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Traditionally fermented food products are important in the Filipino diet. The most popular fermented products in the Philippines are: bagoong (fish paste and shrimp paste), patis (fish sauce), burong isda (fermented fish-rice mixture) and balao-balao (fermented shrimp-rice mixture). Microorganisms have played a role in the production of these products. The sources of raw materials and methods of preparation vary, thereby affecting the number and type of microorganisms present in the mixture. Bagoong and patis production are hastened by adding proteolytic enzymes of Aspergillus oryzae. Likewise, proteolytic enzymes of A. niger also hastened patis making. Bacteria belonging to genus Bacillus, Micrococcus and Staphylococcus were identified in fermenting patis. Among the isolates studied Bacillus stereothermophilus gave the greatest extent of proteolysis. Burong isda and balao-balao are formed by the sequential type of fermentation by lactic acid bacteria. Increase in lactic acid and the lowering of pH were the changes brought about by the growth of the said organisms. Some lactic acid bacteria were found to hydrolyze starch such as Lactobacillus plantarum and L. coryneformis subsp. Coryneformis. Inoculation using pure cultures and commercial starters proved to hasten the process to 3-4 days instead of 7 days