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IJERPH Webinar | The Use of Starter Cultures to Improve Food Safety

2 Jun 2022, 15:30 (CEST)

Food Consumption, Food Safety, Chemical Additives, Starter Cultures, Food Products
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Welcome from the Chairs

4th IJERPH Webinar

The Use of Starter Cultures to Improve Food Safety

An increasing world population makes it necessary to improve food quality and safety, while ensuring food security. Moreover, the modern consumer, more informed and more demanding, avoids foods with too many chemical additives, preferring foods without added additives or low on these. Therefore, one of the current challenges of food industry is to produce safe and enough reducing or eliminating preservatives. Starters are natural, indigenous, microbial cultures that are added to fermented foods, alone or combined, in order to improve food safety, sometimes enabling the reduced use of added preservatives.

The goal of this webinar is to foster a discussion on the use of starter cultures able to increase safety in fermented foods, such as meat, fish, dairy, vegetables, and fruits, among others.

Date: 2 June 2022

Time: 3:30 pm CEST | 9:30 am EDT | 9:30 pm CST Asia

Webinar ID: 828 3234 3468

Webinar Secretariat:


MED-Mediterranean Institute for Agriculture, Environment and Development, Universidade de Évora, Portugal

Marta Laranjo holds a Ph.D. in Biology and is a senior researcher at MED - Mediterranean Institute for Agriculture, Environment and Development (Food Science and Technology Group), Universidade de Évora, Portugal. She is also the executive director of the UNIMED Subnetwork on Food and Water. An expert on microbiology and molecular biology, her main interests include food microbiology, with a special emphasis on starter cultures and the dynamics of food microbiota. She has published several book chapters and numerous research papers in international peer-reviewed journals. She is also a frequent reviewer for several journals in the areas of microbiology and molecular biology. Dr. Laranjo has supervised several Ph.D., Master, and undergraduate students.

Invited Speakers

CIISA – Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Animal Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Lisbon, Portugal,
Associate Laboratory for Animal and Veterinary Sciences (AL4AnimalS), Portugal

My previous and current scientific activities have been mainly developed in the interface between Food and Clinical Microbiology. In July 2009 I assumed a Ciencia2008 position at Faculty of Veterinarian Medicine (FMV) and established my own Microbiology research lab, working with bacteria found in food and assessing for their pathogenicity potential, by comparison with human and veterinarian clinical isolates.Regarding microbial pathogenesis, the majority of the studies being performed worldwide are centered on clinical isolates. The innovative nature of my research is its main subject “food isolates” and how the so-called safe strains became pathogenic, if given the right conditions. Bacteria, although considered among the most simple living organisms, are in fact rather complex. In order to characterize and understand the underlying pathogenicity mechanisms that enable the switch between safety and pathogenicity and integrative approach directed towards gene and protein expression. Using OMICs platforms is the best way to achieve a wider image of the organism under study. Following this idea I aim to use whole-transcriptome and differential proteome profiling to study pathogenicity. The natural evolution of scientific knowledge led me to the optimization of metagenomic analysis to the microbial characterization of Portuguese Traditional cheeses with Protected Designation of Origin. Over the years the establishment of several national and international collaborations with distinct institutions enriched my scientific and personal accomplishments that I intend to maintain and expand.

Food Quality and Microbiology group (CAMIALI), School of Agricultural Engineering, University of Extremadura, Spain

Born in 1986; Degree in Biology, 2009, University of Extremadura, Spain; PhD in Biology, 2017, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain; Researcher at University of Extremadura, Spain; INURA- University Institute for Agricultural Resources Research and School of Agricultural Engineering of the University of Extremadura (Food Quality and Microbiology group, CAMIALI); h-index=7; 15 full research papers in international peer-review journals

Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique (INRA), Paris, France

Christophe Chassard holds a PhD in microbial ecology and nutrition (2005) and a post graduate degree in business administration (2014) in France. After two postdoctoral positions in gut microbiology (France and UK) , he joined ETH Zurich and the Laboratory of Food Biotechnology (Switzerland) to lead the Gut Health program of the group for 7 years. In 2015, he has been appointed as INRAE Researcher Director to lead a research group of Food Biotechnology, mainly working on cheese in the field microbiology, technology and human nutrition. He's especially interested in fermented foods and in developing new microbial solutions for the food and the health industries.

Webinar Content

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Time in CEST

Dr. Marta Laranjo

Chair Introduction

3:30 - 3:40 pm

Dr. Teresa Semedo-Lemsaddek

Dairy Foods: Current Applications and Future Trends

3:40 - 3:55 pm

Dr. María Vázquez Hernández

Healthy Fermented Beverages: The Rise of Kombucha

3:55 - 4:10 pm

Dr. Christophe Chassard

Lactic Starter Dose Shapes S. aureus and STEC O26:H11 Growth, and Bacterial Community Patterns in Raw Milk Uncooked Pressed Cheeses

4:10 - 4:25 pm

Q&A Session

4:25 - 4:40 pm

Closing of Webinar
Dr. Marta Laranjo

4:40 - 4:45 pm

Relevant SI

The Use of Starter Cultures to Improve Food Safety
Guest Editor: Dr. Miguel Elias
Assistant Guest Editors: Dr. Maria João Fraqueza, Dr. Marta Laranjo & Dr. Luís Patarata
Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2021)

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