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J Dairy Sci. 2010 Jul;93(7):3136-45. doi: 10.3168/jds.2009-2898.

Natural populations of lactic acid bacteria isolated from vegetable residues and silage fermentation.

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National Institute of Livestock and Grassland Science, Nasushiobara, Tochigi 329-2793, Japan.


Natural populations of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) and silage fermentation of vegetable residues were studied. Fifty-two strains of LAB isolated from cabbage, Chinese cabbage, and lettuce residues were identified and characterized. The LAB strains were gram-positive and catalase-negative bacteria, which were divided into 6 groups (A to F) according to morphological and biochemical characteristics. The strains in group A were rods that did not produce gas from glucose and formed the d and l isomers of lactate. Groups B and C were homofermentative cocci that formed l-lactic acid. Groups D, E, and F were heterofermentative cocci that formed d-lactic acid. Based on 16S rDNA gene sequence analysis, group A to F strains were identified as Lactobacillus plantarum, Lactococcus piscium, Lactococcus lactis, Leuconostoc citreum, Weissella soli and Leuconostoc gelidum, respectively. The prevalent LAB, predominantly homofermentative lactobacilli, consisted of Lactobacillus plantarum (34.6%), Weissella soli (19.2%), Leuconostoc gelidum (15.4%), Leuconostoc citreum (13.5%), Lactococcus lactis (9.6%), and Lactococcus piscium (7.7%). Lactobacillus plantarum was the dominant member of the LAB population in 3 types of vegetable residues. These vegetable residues contained a high level of crude protein (20.2 to 28.4% of dry matter). These silages prepared by using a small-scale fermentation system were well preserved, with low pH and a relatively high content of lactate. This study suggests that the vegetable residues contain abundant LAB species and nutrients, and that they could be well preserved by making silage, which is a potentially good vegetable protein source for livestock diets.

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