• Lactic acid bacteria;
  • malting;
  • brewing;
  • biological acidification;
  • Fusarium;
  • mycotoxins


Several metabolic properties of lactic acid bacteria (LAB) serve special functions, which directly or indirectly have impact on processes such as improved quality and safety and flavour development in the malting and brewing industry. LAB are widely distributed in nature and in spontaneous fermentations, often they are found to be the dominating microflora resulting in both the inhibition of spoilage bacteria and organisms. This review describes the applications of LAB in malting and brewing. Mycotoxins are naturally occurring toxic secondary metabolites of fungi that may be present in cereals. Several of these mycotoxins have been associated with human and animal diseases and are known to survive the brewing process. LAB have been shown to restrict the growth of the most important toxigenic fungi thereby reducing the formation of these harmful toxins. The occurrence of mycotoxins in cereals is discussed and their effect in beer is reviewed. The main features of this review are: (I) LAB starter cultures in malting and brewing (II) production of acid malt; (III) biological acidification of mash and wort in brewing; (IV) bacteriocins produced by LAB in brewing; (V) LAB and anti-fungal activity; (VI) mycotoxins in cereals.