Now, a tastier loaf of bread

Researchers have found a way to replace artificial preservatives in a bread to make it tastier.

After analyzing strains of mould fermented in sourdough bread, Michael Ganzle, professor and Canada Research Chair in the University of Alberta Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science and fellow researchers were able to isolate natural compounds, which may help keep bread fresh without changing its flavour.

Ganzle said that the preservatives that are added to store-bought bread are safe to eat and extend shelf life, but alter the flavour and give off a distinctive odour.

The study is the first of its kind to link the compounds—hydroxy fatty acids— to antifungal activity and to show that the compounds are formed in the production of fermented foods.

Ganzle said that the team was able to put known compounds into quite a new and exciting context.

The findings also have the potential to replace or complement fungicides that are used in treating crop seeds like barley, wheat and canola, and in protecting crops.

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