Antibacterial activity of different formulations of cheese and whey produced with kefir grains

<div><p>ABSTRACT The development of different products that confer health benefits on the population is a challenge for those who work with food. The aim of this study was to elaborate two formulations of kefir cheese (C1 and C2) and whey (W1, W2), and to evaluate their in situ antibacterial activity against microorganisms of interest in food. Pasteurized milk, powdered milk and kefir grains were used in preparing the products and their percentage composition was determined. C1, C2, W1 and W2 were contaminated with five different logarithmic fractions (A = 8log to E = 4log CFU/ml) of Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 25923) and Escherichia coli (ATCC 11229), with antibacterial activity assessed over 0, 24, 48 and 72 hours of exposure. The results demonstrated the antibacterial activity of kefir cheese and whey, especially after 24 hours. Escherichia coli was the most sensitive of the bacteria, with maximum antibacterial activity seen in the cheese at population densities D and E, and in the whey at densities B, C, D and E after 48 and 72 h, showing that the in situ antibacterial activity of foods produced with kefir grains tends to be lower when compared with studies in vitro. The greater the nutrient content of the food, the lower the antibacterial activity seen, probably due to the protective action that the nutrients confer on the microorganisms against bacteriocins and the metabolites from fermentation.</p></div>