Probiotics as potential alternative biocontrol agents in the agriculture and food industries: A review.
- Citation data:
Food research international (Ottawa, Ont.), ISSN: 1873-7145, Vol: 100, Issue: Pt 1, Page: 63-73
- Publication Year:
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences
Pathogenic microorganisms are a potential threat to the agriculture and food industries. Food contamination can be happened in the production levels at any point in the chain by pathogenic microorganisms. Conventional methods, such as those involving antibiotics, disinfectants, and physical methods, are commonly used as microbial control strategies. Owing to the limitations of these methods, such as emergence of resistance, low effectiveness, high cost, and detrimental effects on food, health, and the environment, many countries have adopted laws and regulations restricting their use. To overcome these problems, an environmentally friendly, cost-effective alternative approach is urgently needed. Probiotics are live microorganisms that offer health benefits to the host, when consumed in adequate amounts, by providing pathogen protective action and nutritional benefits. From a food microbiological point of view, to use probiotics in animals, there is a reduction of zoonotic pathogens in the gastro-intestinal tract (GIT) among animals which prevent the transmission of these pathogens through food. Therefore, probiotics have been proposed as an alternative antimicrobial means to protect against pathogenic microorganisms for better healthcare and food safety. In this review, we discuss probiotics, their selection criteria, mechanisms of action, and their prospects as alternative biocontrol agents, with special emphasis on the agriculture (livestock and aquaculture sectors), and food industries.