Factors Controlling Histamine Production in Swiss Cheese Inoculated with Lactobacillus buchneri

Susan S. Sumner, Frances Roche, Steve L. Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


Swiss cheese was made from raw milk inoculated with various concentrations of a histamine-producing strain of Lactobacillus buchneri. Histamine production in these cheeses was proportional to the initial number of L. buchneri present in the raw milk. The highest inoculum level tested was 105 L. buchneri/ml. This cheese contained 80 mg of histamine/100 g of cheese after 90 d of storage. Only 15 mg of histamine/100 g of cheese were detected after 90 d at the lowest inoculum level, 102 L. buchneri/ml. No histamine was detected in any of the Swiss cheese samples until after the brining stage. Perceptible growth of L. buchneri also did not occur until after the warm room treatment. Therefore, control of histamine formation in Swiss cheese requires control of the number of histamine-producing bacteria in the raw milk. A 5.5% NaCl concentration in DeMan, Rogosa, Sharpe (MRS) broth inhibited the production of histamine by L. buchneri, but the concentrations of NaCl typically found in Swiss cheese were not inhibitory. The histamine-producing isolate of L. buchneri survived heating at 49 to 80°C for 10 min, suggesting that this organism would easily survive the normal heating process applied to raw milk used prior to making Swiss cheese.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3050-3058
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1990
Externally publishedYes


  • Lactobacillus buchneri
  • Swiss cheese
  • histamine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics


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