Trends in Research Related to the Influence of “Water Activity” on Microorganisms in Food

  • J. A. Troller
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 302)


The use of humectants and drying to make foods safe and stable has been one of the underlying principles of food preservation for centuries. With the more recent discovery that the ratio of water vapor pressure to that of pure water (aw) is a useful parameter when related to microbial growth and other stabilizing factors in foods, a valuable means of predicting stability factors based on water limitation has become available. Microorganisms have been categorized with respect to their capacity to grow and produce metabolites in various conditions of limited aw. In addition, the metabolic basis for microbial inhibition has now been determined and schemes for its genetic control have been uncovered. The implications that these discoveries have in a wide variety of applications are far-reaching.


Water Activity Water Relation Bacillus Cereus Compatible Solute High Osmolality 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. A. Troller
    • 1
  1. 1.The Procter & Gamble CompanyWinton Hill Technical CenterCincinnatiUSA

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